Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

As soon as he left school Arthur Harold Jones (known to his family as Harold) joined the Royal Navy as a Boy Artificer which was perhaps expected of a boy who had grown up surrounded by shipwrights and their connection to the sea.
The shipwright trade was not only a factor in Harold's choice of career it was also fundamental to the reason he was born in Portsmouth. His father, John Diamond (or Dyamond) Jones had been born in Deptford, Kent and was raised there in a boatbuilding environment where three of the five boys in his generation of the Jones family were shipwrights whilst the other two were boilermaker and brass finisher. It's not clear why John should have chosen to leave one dockyard area and move to another but around 1888 he took his growing family to Portsmouth. That family consisted of his wife Elizabeth (nee Semple) whom he had married in 1880 and their first three children, Elizabeth, John Albert and Edgar.

In 1891, the first census after their move to Portsmouth recorded the Jones family living at 20 Grafton Street with two more children, Alfred and Eliza whilst in 1901 the address had changed to 90 Grafton Street and another two children, Arthur Harold and Hilda had arrived.
In 1905 Arthur Harold became a pupil of the Secondary School on Victoria Road North where he stayed for three years after which he succeeded in gaining admission to H.M.S. Fisgard as a Boy Artificer which is where he was recorded in the 1911 census. His parents, meanwhile, had moved to 56 Garfield Road (formerly Flying Bull Lane).
Completing satisfactorily the prescribed course of training, Arthur Harold became an Engine Room Artificer, and in 1916 was serving on H.M.S. Black Prince. With this armoured cruiser he went into the Battle of Jutland on Wednesday, May 31st. Just after 6 p.m. this vessel, as one of the First Cruiser Squadron engaged in driving in the enemy light cruisers, got, on account of mist, into a position between the German and British Battle Fleets. As a consequence, the Black Prince received damage which led later to her destruction. Arthur Harold Jones, who was 23 years of age, was among those who perished with the loss of the ship.
Further Information
The photograph above is taken from a memorial booklet published by Southern Grammar School from which extracts also appear above.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) website lists Engine Room Artificer Arthur Harold Jones, (M/551), Royal Navy, HMS Black Prince, date of death, 31/05/1916. Lost at sea. Remembered on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial (Panel 15).
Arthur Jones is also remembered on the Southern Grammar School WW1 Memorial and on the Cenotaph. He is not listed in the 'National Roll of the Great War'.
Tim Backhouse
November 2014
With additional information from Gill Allmond