Sergeant John Archibald Nicholson (754117) served in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve during the Second World War. He was the son of John W Nicholson and Mary A Nicholson of Gateshead, Co. Durham.
On 19th April 1941, Nicholson stood in Newcastle Police Court charged with an offence under the Photograph Order. He had taken a photo with a small 5s camera from the new Tyne Bridge to put in an album for his fiancée who lived in Hastings, East Sussex. His fiancée had never travelled as far north as Newcastle and had never seen the likes of the cranes or the docks. When arrested and told of the law, he stated.
I have been in Hastings for 6 months and know nothing about it.
Superintendent Todhunter told the bench that he believed Nicholson acted in ignorance of the regulations. He received a caution and paid legal costs.
We keep an album at Hastings and I thought she would like some photographs as souvenirs. There are no limitations down there, and naturally, I was quite surprised. It is only a 5s ‘baby’ camera. We could have bought picture postcards, which gave much clearer views. I am sorry if I have caused any trouble.
Deputy Clerk of Newcastle Police Court, Mr. AC Gane, informed the RAF Sergeant that the Photograph Order applied throughout the United Kingdom.
John Archibald Nicholson died on 26th April 1941 aged 21 years old. He was the pilot of Supermarine Spitfire X4245 of RAF 602 Squadron. His grave is in Glenalina Extension, Section AS, Grave 97 of Belfast City Cemetery, Belfast, Co. Antrim. His headstone bears the inscription:
Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends.