Saturday, 12 January 2019

The Ambler family of Moreland's contribution to the war

Widow Lizzie Ambler did not have it easy. Her husband died in his 40s, leaving her with four young children to raise. She managed, but it was a struggle as you can tell from this newspaper article in the Herald.

Herald, 12 May 1897

After her husband's death on their rural block at Kardella, near Korumburra in South Gippsland, Lizzie Ambler settled in Coburg and for many years the family lived at 'Blenheim',168 Moreland Road, Coburg West, on the border with Brunswick, in an area more commonly known as Moreland.

The family attended St Augustine's Church, then on the corner of Davies Street and Moreland Road.

Image taken from One foundation: a parish journey in Moreland by Peter Sherlock. The brick church was built in the early 1920s after the previous wooden building burnt down.

The girls were confirmed at St Augustine's in 1908.

Image taken from Peter Sherlock's One foundation: a parish journey in Moreland, page 28

Lizzie married George William Mateer in 1920 at St Augustine’s Church. She died in 1985 aged 91.

Rose married Leopold Beever in 1924. She died in 1976 aged 84.

Milanie trained as a nurse at the Children's Hospital and served as Staff Nurse Milanie Treleavan Ambler in Salonika during World War One. She did not marry, worked as a nurse all her life and died in 1970 aged 81. 

Adelaide, SA. June 1917. Group portrait of Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) sisters from Qld, NSW, Vic, Tas, and SA, bound for Salonica, Greece on the RMS Mooltan. Includes Milanie Treleaven Ambler of West Coburg, Vic (112). Image courtesy AWM. Image A01240.

Their only brother Llewellyn (Lew), a builder by trade, was one of a number of members of the Coburg Cycling Club who enlisted in World War One.

A send off was held for Lew and his mates at the Club. Mr Johnston (Andrew Johnston, club stalwart) gave ‘a fine speech’ and mentioned that so far 30 members of the Club had enlisted.

Brunswick and Coburg Leader, 3 September 1915

Andrew Johnston’s son Donald was one of the 30 who had enlisted. By the time his father Andrew made his speech farewelling Lew Ambler, ‘hero of 100 battles on the track’, Percy Power (Cycling Club secretary) and Richard Lawless, Don was dead, killed in action at Krithia on 8 May 1915.

Lew Ambler’s pals from Coburg Cycling Club, Richard (Dick) Lawless and Percival (Percy) Power placed In Memoriam notices in the newspapers for years after his death. They joined up at around the same time and the local paper (Brunswick and Coburg Leader, 24 Sep 1915) commented 'and so the three will share the fortunes of war together.’ This was the case until Ambler’s death in June 1918 , but he was never forgotten by his friends. 

No comments:

Post a Comment