Canon George Francis Helm MC, Canon Emeritus of Gloucester since 1951 died suddenly in a Stafford nursing home on Thursday. He was 76.
Helm, who was a son of Dr George Frederick Helm, was educted at All Hallows Honiton, Bradfield where he was a foundation scholar and Exeter College, Oxford later going to Wells Theological College. He was an early link between the Church and the Territorial Army, for he became a chaplain to the forces in 1911 and served with gallantry with the BEF, winning a Military Cross.
Subsequently he was senior TA Chaplain, Southern Command, honary Chaplain to the King between 1938 and 1942 and Deputy Assistant Chaplain-General from 1940 to 1942.Much of his life was spent in the West of England, fore heas at various times vicar of All Saints, Gloucester, vicar of Stroud and rector and, for two seperate periods, rural dean of Dursley. He was a Proctor in Convocation from 1932 to 1950. A good shot, he was captain of the University VII at Oxford. His wife, who died in 1954, was Margaretta Beaufoy, elder daughter of Temple Cooke, sometime Recorder of Southhampton.
A George Francis Helm Shown in 1901 census as living at Bradfield College, nr Reading aged 18 scholar born marazion cornwall. 1891 census shows a George Francis Helm (aged 8 born Marazion) living at The Greenfield, Green Lane Marazion with his father George F Helm (53 born Worthing Sussex) Opthalmic Surgeon with his wife Catherine (53 born Stratton, Cornwall) and sister (19 born Forest Hill, Kent). This information triangulates with the Times report of the marraige in 1911.
Times December 23 1907
G F Helm ordained as priest at Gloucester
Times Friday 25 August 1911
On 23rd inst, at St Gabriel's, Warwick Square by the Rev Collingwood Bruce assisted by the Rev W Basset and the Rev L Puxley, the Rev George Francis Helm only son of the late Dr. G F Helm FRCS to Margaretta Beaufoy eldest daughter of Temple Cooke esq JP of Edmondscote, Frimley.
Aug. 16th 1914 - Battalion left for Hockliffe, Bedfordshire and was billetted in stables and barns. Signallers dropped their kits at Church Farm. Rev. G.F. Helm joined the Battalion as Padre, complete with straw hat. Jolly good chap.
July 2nd 1916 - The Battalion bivouacked on the fringe of Mailly Maillet. Prior to moving off in the evening to attack Thiepval, Rev. Helm conducted Holy Communion Service on some rising ground just beyond the camp. Under the cover of night the Battalion marched to a point within a mile of their rendezvous. A very liberal rum issue took place. I went off with another Signaller to find Brigade HQ in order to secure a few reels of telephone wire. We passed a Field Ambulance on the way, and the road was lined for some distance with rows of stretcher-cases. Here and there one noticed a motionless form swathed in blankets. It was a grim, sad sight. Gas alarm given! German gas drifting slowly towards us. Put on respirators. On rejoining the Battalion we learned that the attack was postponed.
Sept. 7th 1917 - Battalion moved still further back to Alenbon in the Liques area. At Alenbon the Battalion went into training. I was made Assistant-Editor of the 5th Gloster's Gazette. Lieut. G. Hawkins was now the Editor vice Rev. G.F. Helm.
January 3 1918 notification of Military Cross published in times
Letter Times 10 September 1925
Is not this verse very fitting?Forget not us, O land for which we fell
May it go well with England, still go well!
Keep her bright banners without spot or stain,
Lest we should dream that we have died in vain
Rev GF Helm, All Saints Vicarage, Gloucester
Stroud Journal Feb 1928 - Report of sermon delivered at memorial service for Earl Haig
1928 (Reported Stroud Journal 2 Nov 1928)
Delivered sermon which focussed on the inaction of Stroud UDC on housing, library and sports facilities, describing some 12 “back to back” houses as rookeries. Text of sermon produced with information about G F Helm.
Broadcast Programmes Times 29 June 1929
3.30:- Combined Church Parage of the Bristol Territorial Units, with address by the Rev G F Helm, Senior Chaplain, Southern Command Territorial, Army, relayed from the Cathederal, Bristol
To the Editor of the Times
Sir - One is indeed alarmed at the bare suggestion of the Bishop of Durham that Armistice Day should cease to be honoured as it has been in the past. The mere fact that in the very heart of our Empire the whole vast business of the Empire ceases for those two minutes, that in every far off archipelago, wherever the British flag flies, men and women observe that solemn silence, is ample proof of our determination as an Empire to pay some little tribute to the the million dead who gave their life blood so generously. Any attempt to interfere with this sacred observance is bound to create bad feeling, as to millions those two minutes are precious words.
I am, &c
G F Helm
The Vicarage, Stroud Gloucesteshire
April 19 1937 Times church appointments records appointment as Cannon of Gloucester Cathederal
Times July 12 1938
Times Wed 27 1950
Short letter about monastic map of Britain which showed only 2 including village of Iken which was bombed in the war. Map apparently given to Hitler by Mussolini.
Times May 1951 Church Appointments stating resigned the rectory of Dursley joined staff of St Peters Bournemouth
Times March 25 1951
Obituary for Mrs Margarett Beaufoy Helm
Mrs Margaretta Beaufoy Helm wife of Canon GF Helm MC and a former president of the Mothers' Union in the diocese of Gloucester died at Bournemouth yesterday. The elder daughter of the late Temple Cooke, sometime Recorder of Southampton, her marriage took place in 1911
When did Helm come to Stroud?
What other parishes did he serve in?
Why did he get awarded the MC?