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Police Inspector John Parry

Updated: Jan 2, 2023

John was born in Herefordshire to Sophie Gilbert & John Parry in 1860 and was christened 26 August 1860 at St John the Baptist, Herefordshire. His father John was a Master Butcher, a trade that John himself entered into before moving to Birmingham, between 1881 and 1883. On the 30 July 1883 he entered the Police force aged 23 years. He was described as being 5ft 11 and half in height, with a dark completion, black hair and brown eyes. His figure was described as proportionate. He was given the warrant number 5736 Division C.

At the time of his enrolment with Birmingham City Police, he was a single man, living at Albert Road, Handsworth, Birmingham. On 10 July 1909 John was awarded gratuities of one guinea for courageous conduct in stopping a runaway horse in Ludgate Hill, Birmingham. On the 18 September 1912 john was presented with the Kings Coronation Medal.

John had been in service with A, B & C divisions.

Personal life.

John married his first wife Jessie Louisa South at St Peter & St Pauls Church, Aston on 26 July 1884 and the couple gave their address as Lichfield Road, Aston.

On the26 June 1908 Jessie was found in dreadful pain in her bedroom, she was sitting in a chair at the sub Police Station in Bridge Street West, Birmingham. Jessie complained of difficulty in breathing, Dr John Yuill was summoned from Alma Street, but Jessie died before his arrival. She was aged 48 years and had not been in good health for some time. Jessie is buried in a public grave in Warstone Lane Cemetery.

John married his second wife Annie Jones on 12 January 1909 in Bromyard, Herefordshire. John was several years Annie’s senior. The couple had only been married six years when John Parry died 7 September 1915 aged 55 years, after a short illness. He was stationed at Dudley Road Police Station, Birmingham and he left a wife and two children. Police Inspector Parry’s funeral took place on Friday 10 September 1915, in the afternoon at Warstone Lane Cemetery.

The interment was conducted with police honours, with the band heading the procession and the coffin was followed by a large number of officers and men from various police divisions in Birmingham. The bearers were Chief Inspector Whittingham, Inspectors Bennett, Cartwright, Frankish, Hodgkin’s, Lomas, Long, and Penrice. Also present at the graveside were Superintendent McManus(Deputy Chief Constable), Chief Superintendent Monk and Morgan, Detectives superintendents Daniels, and Superintendents Berry, Bolton & Clarke. The floral wreaths included tributes from Chief Constable Mr C.H. Rafter and various police departments.

Inspector John Parry's funeral procession at Warstone Lane cemetery in 1915.

Good was his heart, his friendship sound, Patient in pain, and loved by all around; His griefs are o’er, his pains for ever done, A life of everlasting life has now begun.

Research: J. Fielding. With thanks to T. Rudge, the Parry family and the West Midlands Police Museum.


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