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People of St Mary's Bay and St Mary in the Marsh

John Coleman VC
Victoria Hopper
Larry Martyn

Edith Nesbit
John and James Tredwell
Peter Walter

John Coleman VC

Born in St Mary in the Marsh in 1798, John Coleman won the Victoria Cross (VC) at the siege of Sebastopol in the Crimean war.

He was 57 years old, and a sergeant in the British Army, 97th Regiment (Queen's Own Royal West Kent) during the Crimean War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

On 30 August 1855 at Sebastopol, the Crimea, when the enemy attacked "New Sap" and drove the working party in, Sergeant Coleman remained in the open, exposed to the enemy's rifle pits, until all round him had been killed or wounded. He finally carried one of his officers who was mortally wounded, to the rear.

John Coleman was one of 62 recipients of the Victoria Cross presented on Friday 26 June 1857 by Queen Victoria at her first investiture of the Victoria Cross in Hyde Park, London.

He was killed in action at Lucknow, India, in 1858.
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reference and more information


John Coleman c1850
John Coleman c1850 [ack 3.]


Depiction of the Siege of Sebastopol
Depiction of the Siege of Sebastopol

Victoria Hopper

Victoria Hopper was a Canadian-born British stage and film actress and singer, who in her latter years, lived in St Mary in the Marsh.
She was born 24 May 1909 in Vancouver in Canada and died peacefully at her home in St Mary in the Marsh on 22 January 2007, aged 97.

Her second marriage, in 1951, was to Peter Walter, a fellow actor and hero of the second world war. They had met starring in the play My Mother Said in June 1949.
They lived together at Well Cottage, St. Mary's Road, St. Mary in the Marsh.

Victoria Hooper, well known from the 1930s for her achievements on stage and screen, was described as 'petite and fair-haired'. She was a great success in her first play 'Martine', in which she starred. Victoria went on to star in several plays, musical shows and in seven films.
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Victoria Hopper
Victoria Hopper, Actress

Larry Martyn

Lawrence "Larry" Martyn, born on 22 March 1934, was an English actor known for his comedy performances. He spent his latter years living in St Mary's Bay.

Martyn was born in London and was a former member of the Parachute Regiment. He was famous as Mr. Mash in the BBC comedy series Are You Being Served?, appearing in the first three series. Other TV appearances included Dad's Army, On the Buses, Look - Mike Yarwood!, Rising Damp and The Detectives.


Larry Martyn
Larry Martyn, Actor

He also played alongside Frankie Howerd in two of his BBC shows, Up Pompeii! and Whoops Baghdad. His film roles included Carry On at Your Convenience where he had a small part as the pier rifle-range owner, and Carry On Behind, where he played an inept electrician who helps wire up the public address system at the campsite the film was set in.

Larry Martyn died on 7 August 1994 at home in St Mary's Bay and was survived by his wife Hilary and their two daughters.
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John and James Tredwell

Father and son John and James Tredwell are both sportsman with strong links to St Mary's Bay.

St Mary's Bay resident John Tredwell was the Sports Organiser at the St Mary's Bay School Journey (and Holiday) Centre in the 1960s.  The centre was used by schools and organisations to provide educational and sporting breaks for children.

Below is an article with photograph about John Tredwell, taken from the Centre's journal of winter 1968.

John originates from Ashford, but moved to Folkestone in his 20s, as he played for Folkestone Town Football Club, he was a very good footballer in his youth. He now lives in St Mary's Bay.

John and James Tredwell  October 2006
John and James Tredwell in October 2006 at
the 150th Anniversary Dinner/Dance
of Folkestone CC
[ack 6.]

John's son James Tredwell, who lived in St Mary's Bay, is a Kent and English cricketer. A left-handed batsman and a right-arm off break bowler, he plays his domestic cricket for Kent County Cricket Club.
He made his debut for Kent in the 2001 season, just nine days before his first appearance for England Under-19s. He made his ODI debut on England's tour of Bangladesh in March 2010 and his Test match debut in the second test against Bangladesh at Dhaka on 20 March 2010. He was appointed county captain of Kent in November 2012.

In 2013 he played many games for England, culminating in him being made captain of the England T20 side for their match against New Zealand on 27 June 2013. Unfortunately the match had to be abandoned after only 2 overs because of rain.

James no longer lives in St Mary's Bay but now resides near Canterbury, with his wife and child, close to Canterbury Cricket Ground.
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John Tredwell 1968

Peter Walter

Peter Walter was born in Hythe on 11 March 1915 and educated at the Harvey Grammar School in Folkestone.

Always interested in dramatics, on leaving school he joined the local repertory company, of which he eventually become director.

During the second world war he served first in the Pioneer Corps and was then commissioned into the 23rd Hussars. Whilst serving in France, he was awarded the DSO for gallantry when his squadron was attacked by German Panther tanks.
See full Citation

After the war he married Victoria Hooper, a well known actress, and they settled in St Mary in the Marsh, living at Well Cottage in St. Mary's Road. He died in 1993, aged 78.


Peter Walter
Peter Walter, Actor and War Hero

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