John Borne

Born in Falmouth on 5th August 1877, John was 1 of 6 children of Robert and Fanny Borne who lived in Old PO Yard, Falmouth (1881), Manaccan, Helston (1891) where his father was the Inn keeper of the Shipwright Arms.  His father was a Police Constable in 1871, Superintendent in 1881 and 1901 but listed in the 1891 census as an innkeeper.

John Borne outside parents’ house in Helford

He married  Margaret Ellen Hill of Modbury, the daughter of Samuel Hill, an agricultural labourer, in Jan 1911 and lived in Plymouth before moving to Modbury. He had two children, Muriel and Robert.  His wife was the sister of Charles and Sidney Hill who died at Jutland in 1916.

Margaret Borne with children, Muriel and Robert

On 26th April 1898 he joined the RN and  was recorded as 5ft 5ins with fair hair and blue eyes.  In the 1911 census he was listed  as a Leading Stoker and married, living in 70 Grenville Road, St Judes, Plymouth. 

On 6th November 1912 he was initiated, then passed and raised into the Union of Malta Masonic Lodge while resident in Malta. He served on the cruisers HMS Arrogant, Fearless and Crescent as well as shore bases HMS Vivid ( the forerunner of HMS Devonport).

Petty Officer Borne with daughter, Muriel

On 16th February 1918 he moved to HMS Dolphin, the RN Submarine School at Gosport, Hants.   (The reason for the ship and the naval establishment having the same name is that prior to 1959, the Naval Discipline Act only applied to Officers and Men of the Royal Navy who were borne or listed in the muster books of one of HM ships of War. Thus all personnel were allocated to a nominal depot ship, even when not actually serving on a proper seagoing warship. This was usually between Drafts or while undergoing Training or promotion/ advancement courses. The shore establishment usually took the name of the original ship. Whenever the nominal depot ship changed, then she also took the name of the previous ship.)

He subsequently lived at 31 Galpin Street but died on 21st January 1919 at HMS Haslar, the Royal Navy hospital aged 42. He is believed to have died from heart problems caused by sustained periods of being submerged. He is buried in the churchyard of St. George’s Church, Modbury and is the only submariner on the war memorial.  His wife Margaret died in 21 November 1962 having lost her husband and 2 brothers in the Great War. His grandson lives in Ringmore.

Born:5th August 1877
Where Born:Falmouth
Address:31 Galpin St, Modbury
Marital Status:Married
Next of Kin:1 of 6 children of Robert and Fanny Borne; husband of Margaret Ellen Borne of Modbury (d. 21 Nov 62)
Remarks:5ft 5 in with blue eyes, fair hair
Service:Royal Navy
Service Number:288252
RankPetty Officer Stoker 1st Class
UnitHM Submarines - HMS Dolphin
Died On:24th January 1919
Where:RN Hospital, Haslar
Where Buried:St Georges Church, Modbury