Lees, James

Born Calcutta, India 1892. He lived at 8 Lee Smith Street, Hull (HDM 28/02/1916). Served as Able seaman, on the ‘Dido’. Drowned on 26/02/1916, aged 24. Recent research by CWGC, has shown that Able Seaman, Lees is buried here. The Commission is in the process of producing a special memorial headstone to commemorate him as it is not possible to mark his actual grave.Please note that this casualty was previously commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial; his name will be removed when the appropriate panel is next replaced.
Dido SS was a British Merchant steamer of 4,769grt. On the 26th February 1916 when on route from Hull for India, she hit a mine when 4 miles NNE from Spurn Light Vessel, North Sea. 28 lives were lost, including Master. Owned by Wilson Line, Hull.
While lying at anchor at 6.15 a.m. during gale force winds and heavy snow squalls, a violent explosion occurred on the port side of the vessel. The chief officer and two crew attempted to lower a boat to inspect the damage but this broke adrift as it reached the water. In the heavy weather the three men were unable to row back to the ship which the soon lost sight of in the squall.Fortunately the boat was soon picked up by the Belgian s.s. MARTHA on her way to the DIDO in an attempted to pick up those of her crew who were now in the water, due to the extreme cold and exhaustion they were unable to seize the ropes and life belts thrown to them. The MARTHA also attempted to lower a lifeboat but were unable due to the heavy sea. The Belgian steamer stood by t he DIDO until she sank at 7.20 a.m. then proceeded to Hull. The ship’s papers sank with with the vessel along with a stowaway passenger.
ALTOFT, JOHN WILLIAM (25), Second Mate, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Son of James William and Ada Altoft, of 3, Albert Avenue, Wellsted St., Hull, Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
BOSTED, H (49), Able Seaman, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Born in Norway, Memorial: Hull Western Cemetery
BURKHALTER, ERNEST (29), Steward, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Born in Switzerland, Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
BYRNE, MICHAEL (60), Able Seaman, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Born at Dundalk, Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
COBBY, HAROLD (22), Fourth Engineer Officer, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Son of Albert and Annie Isabella Cobby, of 17, Plane St., Hull. Born at Hull, Memorial: Hull Western Cemetery
DANN, DUDLEY ST. AUBYN (20), Engineer’s Steward, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Son of Alfred and Ellen Maria Dann, of 4, Saplin St., Manningham, Bradford. Born at Lincoln, Memorial: Bradford (Scholemoor) Cemetery
GOLD, S (19), Assistant Steward, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, (served as GILBERT), Son of Jacob and Sarah Gold, of 9, Philip St., Back Church Lane, Whitechapel, London. Born in London, Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
HABBERSHAW, THOMAS ELTON (23), Seaman, S.S. Dido, Mercantile Marine, †26/02/1916, Son of Louise F. Habbershaw, of 20, Chesnut Avenue, Queen’s Rd., Hull, Memorial: Hull Northern Cem

First name:
Able Seaman
Date Died
Place died:
Hull (Hedon Road) Cemetery, East Yorkshire, UK
Place Buried