Bridget Trenerry

Date of birth: 1853
Place of birth: Dublin, Eire
Service No.: Not known
Rank: Stewardess
Regiment / Division: Merchant Service, HMHS Asturias
Died: I24th March 1917 aged 65 years
Death location: At sea in the Bristol Channel

Life before the War
Bridget was born in Dublin, Ireland, the daughter of John and Mary Murphy.

In 1871 Bridget married Edmund Trenerry, a customs officer from Truro.  They had three children – JCM? b.1873, Henry b.1878 and Francis b. 1882.

The 1881 census shows them living at 151 Trennick Row, Truro.  By the census of 1891 the family had moved to St Mary’s in Southampton.  The 1901 census shows Edmund, Bridget and Henry living in Portswood.  Bridget’s husband Edmund died in 1904 aged 64.  Sometime after his death Bridget moved to 56 Cromwell Road, Fitzhugh (Shirley), Southampton where she is recorded on the 1911 census and this is also the address recorded on the 1920 roll of honour.

War Service
The National Roll of the Great War states that Bridget volunteered for war service at the outbreak of hostilities in 1914 aged 61.  She was posted as a Stewardess on board the HMHS Asturias where she assisted in the conveying of the wounded from France and the Mediterranean back to hospitals in England.

HMHS Asturias

HMHS Asturias

On the 21st March 1917 The Asturias had put ashore 1000 wounded at Avonmouth and was returning to Southampton.  Just before midnight, as the ship approached Start Point, she was torpedoed by German U-boat UC-66.  There were approximately 300 crew on board including many nurses.  Of these, Bridget (aged 65) and 32 others were killed or reported missing and a further 37 injured.  Many of the crew came from Southampton and a number have recently been discovered buried at Southampton Old Cemetery.  The ship was extensively damaged and was initially beached near Salcombe.  It was later salvaged and taken to Portsmouth where it was used as an ammunition hulk for the rest of the war before being rebuilt as a cruise liner and re-named “Arcadian”.

Bridget is commemorated on the Southampton Cenotaph and the Tower Hill Memorial.

Bridget was entitled to the General Service Medal and the Mercantile Marine War Medal.

Researcher: Helen Wallbridge
Published.: 15th July 2014
Updated: Insert dates here

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