Ordnance Artificer Colin Kidger (P/MX 70036) served in the Royal Navy during World War Two. He was the son of Herbert Kidger and Nellie Kidger of Station Road, Pilsley, Derbyshire.
Colin was born in Morton, Derbyshire and received his education there and at Stonebroom, Derbyshire. He later attended Clay Cross Secondary School before enlisting in the Royal Navy in August 1941.
At the time of Kidger’s death, his home was with his uncle Mr. A Hapham, a weigh clerk at Rufford Colliery, Nottinghamshire. Before the outbreak of war, he worked there as a fitter. He was a member of the Colliery Boys’ Brigade and took part in various sporting activities.
Death in Belfast, Co. Antrim
He died on 18th April 1941 aged 22 years old while serving on board HMS Newark. The ship became involved in a collision with HMS Volunteer in Devonport, Plymouth on 10th April 1941. It arrived in Belfast, Co. Antrim on 18th April 1941 for repairs to the hull. At the time, it was part of 17th Destroyer Division, escorting 1st Minelaying Division in the Irish Sea. Newark suffered a few collisions, a torpedo hit and damage in The Fire Raid of the Belfast Blitz on 5th May 1941.
Colin Kidger’s grave is in Glenalina Extension, Section D, Grave 127 of Belfast City Cemetery, Belfast, Co. Antrim. He was the first fatal casualty of World War Two in his home village of Pilsley, Derbyshire. His headstone bears the inscription:
The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away. Ever with the Lord.