Roll of Honour

The Spanish Civil War 1936-1939

Between 1936 and 1939 over 35,000 men and women from over 50 countries left their homes in order to volunteer willingly for the Republican forces in Spain, to stand against the Nationalist fascist rebel forces of General Franco. From Britain & Ireland an estimate of more than 2,500 volunteered, with as many as 80% of them being members of the Communist Party of Great Britain and its Young Communist League.  

Records from the International Brigades Association indicate that 923 were listed as members of the Communist Party and 169 were listed as members of the Young Communist League. It’s difficult to know for sure, as many travelled under false names, and did not list their political affiliations for fear of being captured and singled out because of them. The average age of volunteers was twenty-nine, although the most common age was twenty-three.

Volunteers came from overwhelmingly working class backgrounds, with large numbers hailing from cities such as London, Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow. Only a small number of them were unemployed, with large numbers involved in industrial occupations such as labouring, construction, shipbuilding and mining. Many of these volunteers had been previously involved in fighting the British Union of Fascists at their meetings and marches, such as Cable Street.

Using records from the International Brigades Memorial Trust, previous Challenge Magazine memorials, and early Roll of Honours from ‘Britons In Spain’ by William Rust and ‘British Volunteers for Liberty’ by Bill Alexander, we have tried to compile a more complete list of all YCL members who gave their lives in the fight for a Spanish Republic: 

Name | – Where they were from | (When and where they fell in Spain)

Alexander, John
Dundee July 1937, Brunete
Armstrong, Alexander
Manchester February 1937, Jarama
Avner, Sydney
Stoke Newington, London December 1936, Boadilla
Ball, William (Tom)
Reading/London February 1937, Jarama
Bird, Arthur Ernest (J.)
London July 1937, Brunete
Burke, Edward
London February 1937, Madrid Hospital/Jarama
Cantor, Ralph
(Kantorovich) Manchester July 1937, Brunete
Connolly, John
Glasgow February 1937, Jarama
Cornford, John
Cambridge December 1936, Lopera
Cox, Ray
Southampton December 1936, Boadilla
Davidovitch, Maurice
London February 1937, Jarama
Deegan, G.
Balloch March 1938, Teruel
Dolan, Thomas
Sunderland February 1937, Jarama
Duffy, James
Glasgow August 1938, Ebro
Featherstone, William
Paddington December 1938, Vich Hospital
Fink, Sydney
 Salford March 1938, Belchite
Flynn, Thomas (J.F.)
Glasgow April 1937, Cordova
Giles, William (W.J.)
Liverpool February 1937, Jarama
Gold, Alfred
London February 1937, Jarama
Goodman, Robert
Salford/Nottingham February 1937, Jarama
Gross, Harry
Stepney, London July 1937, Brunete
Guest, David
London July 1938, Ebro
Hyndman, James
Glasgow December 1937, Las Rosas
Jordan, Leonard
Manchester July 1937, Brunete
Kenny, W.
(Robert Patrick/Pat)
Manchester February 1937, Jarama
Kermode, James
Milngavie, Glasgow January 1937, Cordova
Killick, Fred (T.F.)
Southport February 1937, Jarama
Lacey, Clifford
London September 1938, Ebro
Lee, Samuel
London February 1937, Jarama
Leppard, Alexander
(Leopard?) London February 1937, Jarama
Marks, Alfred
London July 1937, Brunete
Matthews, Charlie
Messer, Martin (Frank)
Maryhill, Glasgow December 1936, Boadilla
MacKenzie, William Edward
Glasgow March 1938, Aragon
McGuire, William
Dundee February 1937, Jarama
McKay, David
Glasgow August 1938, Ebro
Nash, Max
London July 1938, Ebro
Newsum, Arthur
Sheffield January 1937, Cordova
Oldershaw, Tom
Battersea March 1938, Aragon
Rae, James
Glasgow February 1937, Jarama
Rutherford, James (Jimmy)
Edinburgh April 1938, Executed whilst prisoner at Burgos
Seal, John
Segal, Nathan
Walthamstow, London December 1936, Cordova
Sylvester, John (Jack)
London February 1937, Jarama
Tallis, Walter (Wally)
London April 1938, Gandesa
Watts, Roy
Leicester September 1938, Ebro
Whitehead, Frank
Manchester February 1937, Jarama
Wilkinson, Norman
Manchester February 1937, Jarama
Winfield, Bernard (D.G.)
Nottingham January 1938, Teruel
Yates, Anthony
Glasgow February 1937, Jarama
Yates, Stephen
London December 1936, Casa Del Campo
Created by potrace 1.10, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2011

If you know of names of YCL members who were killed during the Spanish Civil War which we have missed, or have any amendments to the list above, then please get in contact:

" We are proud of our boys––Britain should be proud of them––as they were proud to be members of the Young Communist League. "
National Council of the YCL
Challenge Magazine, January 9th, 1937