Anniversary This Week
20 July 1916 Percy Gold aged 33. Son of Mr William Henry Gold and Mrs Mary Elizabeth Gold. Percy Gold came to Singapore in 1906 and joined the firm of Lyall and Evatt, later becoming senior partner when the firm became Evatt and Co. Percy was a well-known member of the Anglican community in Singapore. He may be the only man to have had a memorial service held in the Anglican cathedral. The Bishop of Singapore conducted the service which was attended by Singapore Governor Sir Arthur Young and Lady Young. His friends also collected money for a sound board in his memory and a brass plaque that is still in St Andrew's Cathedral His name also appears on the Singapore Cricket Club war memorial. Percy was generous with his time and accounting skills for many charitable and institutional causes in Singapore, such as the YWCA and the Church Mission. In his will he left an amount of money to be used for such purposes. His trustees set up the Percy Gold Memorial Award for St Andrew's School, an Anglican school, which meant his name has been familiar to its pupils for a century after his death. The fund only recently ran out of money. The story of how he came to sign up for service has been handed down within the school. It seems that he wrote a letter to the Singapore newspapers that was critical of the role of the Singapore Volunteer Corps, he himself having served as a private in the Queen’s Westminster Volunteer Rifles from 1900 to 1905 before he came to Singapore. As a result of the letter he was challenged to 'do his bit' and returned to the UK where he first joined the Inns of Courts Officer Training Corps in November 1915, being later gazetted second lieutenant in the 28th Battalion Scots Guards in February 1916. He went to the Front later that year and was shot by a sniper as he was leading a party to repair wires. Instead of taking cover when a flare lit up their position, as the other men did, Percy chose to stand still and hope he would not be seen. He is buried at Brandhoek Military Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.
About the Singapore Cenotaph Project
Few Singaporeans are aware of their cenotaph, sitting majestically on the Esplanade facing the Padang. It is mid-way between the Singapore Cricket Club and the Singapore Recreation Club. The men whose names appear on its bronze plaques had strong links with both of these clubs, so it's an appropriate location. Read more...