Hugh Leopold Phillips was born in Wales in 1866. He joined the Merchant Navy with his youngest brother Thomas, and slowly moved up through the ranks of Second and First Mate, until he became Ship’s Master. This role involved the navigation of the vessel.
Hugh was living in Glamorgan in 1891, as a boarder. It is possible this is where he met his wife, Naomi Jane, who was born in this area. The couple married in 1895 and had one daughter, Marjorie, born in 1895. By 1911, Hugh and his family were living at 6 Clifton Terrace in Dovercourt, Essex.
Hugh was on board Mercantile Marines ship ‘Irene’ on 9th November 1915, when there was a mine explosion. Hugh drowned, and his body was not recovered. His name appears on the Tower Hill Memorial. Hugh’s probate records show that his widow, Naomi, was by this time living at 4 Margaretting Road, South Wanstead.
Research by Redbridge Museum
Commonwealth War Graves Commission