Explore > Funerals


When a member of the armed forces dies the service will pay for the grave and funeral.  This would have certainly been offered for Jack and would have taken place in or near Grimsby.  However, it appears that Lily Cornwell, wanted a private funeral and arranged for his body to be brought back to London where it was buried in a common, shared, grave in Manor Park Cemetery.  Jack’s Captain speculated that maybe due to her grief Lily hadn’t understood that the Navy would pay for a grave and funeral but it may be that she wanted her boy close to home or couldn’t face the formality of the military service.  However her grief was not allowed to remain private for long.


The story of Jack’s bravery captured the public imagination, it had been briefly mentioned in Vice Admiral Beatty’s report of the Battle.  With the second year of the War drawing to a close, stalemate on the Western Front and the news from Jutland not as overwhelming positive as might have been expected the British public were looking for hero.  As Beatty’s report was published the act of this ordinary boy became headline news.  Campaigns began to have Jack’s bravery properly commemorated, there was outrage that this national hero did not have his own grave.  On the 29 July 1916 Jack was reburied with full military honours in a private grave at Manor Park Cemetery.  The funeral was preceded by a spectacular procession with hundreds of Scouts lining the route and members of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve pulling the gun carriage on which rested the coffin. 

An elaborate monument was erected over Jack Cornwell’s grave.  By the end of 1916 his Father was buried her and his Mother in 1919.  This image was taken in 1934.

On to: Bravery Recognised

©2010 The Scout Association Archive. Allrights reserved.
Registered Charity numbers 306101 (England and Wales) and SC038437 (Scotland) Incorporated by Royal Charter.