Well, a local chap by the name of William Parker has been doing some digging and came up with a fascinating story.
About ten years ago, William was researching for a book he was producing about the opening of St Cuthbert’s Church in nearby Saltcoats.
One of the main benefactors for St. Cuthbert’s was apparently a Mrs McIsaac and it was her son-in-law , Mr Charles Addis, who spoke on her behalf at the Opening Ceremony as did another donor, a Mr. James Mutter (You may remember him from another post James Mutter’s windows about the person who installed the two stained glass windows either side of the alter).
Anyway, Mr Addis’s sister was married to Rev Robert Adamson, the minister of St. John’s Church in Ardrossan. This means that the font which is now in the Barony St John was, as we thought, gifted to the original St. John’s Church but what we didn’t know was that it was gifted by St. John’s own minister and his wife.
William searched online and found the following entry;
First names: Robert Thorburn
Regiment: Royal Scots
Unit: 4th Bn
Date of Death: 23/04/1917
Additional information: Son of the Rev. Robert M. Adamson, of Saint John’s Manse, Ardrossan, Ayrshire. M.A. (Edinburgh University)
Memorial reference: Bay 1 and 2
Memorial: ARRAS MEMORIAL
Robert is the brother of George Addis Adamson who is also on the memorial. Both brothers are also on the Ardrossan memorial.
Name: ADAMSON, GEORGE ADDIS
Initials: G A
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Second Lieutenant Regiment/Service: King’s Own Scottish Borderers
Unit: 6th Bn.
Date of Death: 12/10/1917
Additional information: Son of the Rev. Robert M. Adamson, M.A., and Robina S. T. Adamson, of St. John’s Manse, Ardrossan, Ayrshire.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 66 to 68. Memorial: TYNE COT MEMORIAL
The plaque on the back of the font is photographed below.
William also obtained additional information from Edinburgh University’s Roll of Honour:
ADAMSON, GEORGE ADDIS (b. 1898).
Ardrossan Academy ; Dux; First XV. and XI. Cadet Corps 1909-12.
Student of Arts, 1916-17. O.T.C. Infantry, July to Dec. 1916, Cadet; Officer Cadet Dec. 1916.
6th King’s Own Scottish Borderers, 2nd Lieut. Jan. 1917. France.
Fell in action at Passchendaele on I2th October 1917.
Here is the plaque showing their names on the Ardrossan war memorial just across the road from the church.