Sydney Newton Dyson (1893–1957)

Lance Corporal

Royal Engineers 54937 & 250409 118 Railway Coy

Photo courtesy Ruth Smith

Sydney Dyson

Ruth Smith]
Sydney Newton Dyson was born at Crich in 1893. He was the younger of the two children of Heyworth Dyson and Rosamond Ann Newton, with an older sister. Sydney’s father was the headmaster of the British School at Crich for many years. Though Sydney’s sister followed her father into the teaching profession, Sydney became an engineer, having studied part-time at Derby Technical College whilst serving an apprenticeship with the Midland Railway.
Sydney’s army service records have survived, which confirm that he attested for service at London in October 1914 and was attached to the Royal Engineers with the rank of Sapper. He served as a skilled engine erector and fitter with the Railway Construction Companies of the Royal Engineers. He spent some time with the 110th Company, though the majority of his service was spent with the 118th Company. Sydney arrived in France as part of the British Expeditionary Force on 4 February 1915. In February 1918 he was promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal. Sydney returned to England in March 1919 and was demobilised from military service on 1 April 1919. He was awarded the Victory Medal and British War Medal.
After his discharge from the army, Sydney returned to Crich and took up a position as an engineer with Rolls-Royce at Derby in 1919. He married Ellen Whittaker in 1928. They had one daughter. The family lived for a period at Shelton Lock at Derby, though moved to live at East Kilbride in Scotland in 1955 when Sydney took up a position as chief aero-engine designer at the Rolls-Royce factory there.
Sydney Newton Dyson passed away at East Kilbride on 14 July 1957, aged sixty-four years.

Medal Index Record
Awarded Victory, British War and 15 Star Medals.
Entered France 4 Feb 1915.

Army Service Record
Sydney attested in London 30 October 1914 aged 21 years and 4 months. He was an engine fitter, born in Crich. His record shows him to be placed as a sapper in the Royal Engineers. Next of kin were given as Heyworth Dyson, father, and Rosemund, mother. He gave Baptist as his religion
4/2/15 To France
2/12/15 Rejoined unit from hospital (11th Rly Coy)
1/1/16 Joined unit from 110th Rly Coy
16/2/18 Appointed L/Cptl
1/4/19 Demobbed 1 April 1919 with a home address of The Bower, Crich.

Newspaper report

The Courier, 8 March 1919
Sapper S.N. Dyson, one of the first Crich soldiers to cross to France, returned home on Tuesday having received his discharge.

Walter Hallam Diary
Walter Hallam's addresses and notes from his diary:
1914 Diary: Sapper Syd Dyson 54937, 110 Railway Company, Royal Engineers, Longmoor, Hants
Met Syd Dyson 28 Nov 1914 at Ambergate Station coming home from furlough
30 Dec 1914 walk with Syd Dyson


1901: The Yews, Crich

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Heyworth Dyson Head 41 Certified schoolmaster Calderbrook, Lancs
Rosamund A Dyson wife 38   Derby
Isabel M Dyson daughter 11   Crich
Sydney N Dyson son 7   Crich
May Dyson cousin 17   Todmorden, Yorks
Mary E Allin boarder 27 Schoolmistress Pinxton

RG13 piece 3231 folio 17 page 25

1911: The Yews, Crich

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Heyworth Dyson Head 51 Headteacher elementary school Littleboro, Lancs
Rosamund Ann Dyson wife 49   Derby
Isabel Maud Dyson daughter 21 Assistant teacher elementary school Crich
Sydney Newton Dyson son 17 Privileged Apprentice, Loco Depo Crich
Mary Elizabeth Allin boarder 37 Assistant teacher elementary school Pinxton

RG14PN20983 RG78PN1251 RD436 SD4 ED12 SN91

1918 Voters List, Crich
Sydney Newton Dyson, the Bower; absent on military service

1939 Register: West Avenue, Shardlow
Sydney N Dyson b.30 June 1893; aero engine designer
Ellen Dyson b.22 December 1889
Isabela M Dyson b.28 January 1890; teacher retired
one closed record