George Hodgen

Date of birth: 1876
Place of birth: Wigan, Lancashire
Regiment / Division: Mercantile Marine Reserve
Vessel: HMS Sarnia
Rank / Service No: Asst. Engineer
Died: 12th September 1918, aged 42 years
Commemorated: Plymouth Naval Memorial


George was the sixth of 9 siblings born to John and Susannah Hodgen (nee Ormesher), who married in Standish, Lancashire on 21 September 1862.


Both parents were born in 1840, either in Wigan or very near. All of their children were born in the same area.

John died on 28 November 1896 and Susannah passed away only 2 years later, on 20 May 1898. She left £248 2s to her son Henry.



Mary Ellen   b. 1866   d. 20 December 1893 Wigan   Married William Ward in Wigan in 1892.

Henry   b. 1868   d. 19 December 1943 Wigan   Married Mary Ellen Harrison at Blackrod on 18 February 1893 (5 children).

Margaret   b. 1870   d. 1927 Wigan   Married John Roby in Wigan in 1894 (4 children).

Susannah   b. 1872   d. 1907 Preston Royal Infirmary (of Slouching Fibroid Syncope)   Married Luke Gent in Wigan in 1899.

Agnes   b. 1874   d. 1955 Calder, Yorkshire   Married Herbert Henry Hoddinott in Brighouse on 30 January 1897.


Jane   b. 1878   d. 1953 Darwen, Lancashire   Living with Margaret & family at 1901 Census.

John James   b. 1880   d. 28 August 1943 Wigan   Married Elizabeth Hannah Wyatt in Wigan in 1901.

Charlotte   b. 1884   d. 21 February 1931 Adlington   Married Luke Gent in Adlington in 1910.


George married Annie Edworthy in Exeter on 18 May 1903. The location makes sense because George was based in Plymouth at the 1901 Census.


The couple lived at 10 Oak Bank Road, Itchen and Annie was living at 11 Ivy Road, St. Denys at the time of her death.

Annie was born in Exeter in 1873 and she passed away in 1940; there is the possiblilty that she was a victim of an air-raid.


The couple had 3 sons……


Royston George   b. 28 May 1904 Crediton   d. 1972 Isle of Wight   Married Lilian Doris Baker in Southampton in 1932.

Leslie John (Jack)   b. 1906 Southampton   d. 1957 Southampton   Married Elizabeth Boniface D. Salmon in Southampton in 1930.

Kenneth Brewer   b. 1908 Southampton   d. 1971 Southampton   Married Violet Ethel Finch in Southampton in 1933.



Sarnia was built in Birkenhead in 1910 as a passenger ferry. For four years, she plied her trade in the English Channel, before being transformed into an armed boarding ship.


HMS Sarnia saw service exclusively in the Dardanelles from 1915, during the Gallipoli campaign, primarily as a troop ship.


On 29 October 1916, Sarnia collided with HMS Hythe off Cape Helles. The Hythe, also acting as a troop ship, sank with the loss of 155 people.


Sarnia was repaired over the following months, and was back in the area plying her trade between Mudros and the Gallipoli peninsular.


On the 12 September 1918 just off Alexandria, Sarnia was sunk by a torpedo fired from U-65….54 persons lost their lives, including George.



Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 30th September 2016


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