1. Memorial:Mazingarbe Communal Cemetery ExtensionI. F. 12.
2. Book:The (1921) Masonic Roll of Honour 1914-1918Pg.135
3. Memorial:The (1940) Scroll - WW1 Roll of Honour13B GQS

Awards & Titles:

Distinguished Service Order
Mentioned in Despatches

Family :

Third son of the late Mr. L. de. L. Simonds and Mrs. Simonds, of Audley's Wood, and brother of Mr. Eric Simonds.

A biography for John can be found on the Simonds Family website. According to the family he was known as "Jack.", and he was the 3rd son of Louis de Luze Simonds and Mary E. Simonds of Audleys Wood, Basingstoke, Hants.

See also Winchester College at War.

Education & Career :

He was educated at Summerfields, Oxford and Winchester College, where he was first on the role of scholars. He was subsequently at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich

Service Life:


Unit / Ship / Est.: 136th Siege Battery Royal Garrison Artillery 

Action : The Arras Offensive and associated actions 

9 April - 16 June 1917. The Arras Offensive consisted of a series of linked attacks starting with the Anglo Canadian assault on the dominant Vimy Ridge feature through the battles in the Scarpe River valley and up to the assaults on the Hindenburg line in the summer of 1917.

He was gazetted into the Royal Garrison Artillery as a career officer in 1903 with an early posting to Malta. When war broke out he was in India. He reached the front line in France in December 1914 and served there continuously until his death, receiving the DSO for conspicuous service as liaison officer between the R.G.A. and the Royal Flying Corps.

"Educated at Winchester he attended the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich and was gazetted into the Royal Garrison Artillery in 1903. Major Simonds served for several years in the east, carrying out important survey work, and then acted as ADC to General Sir Charles Anderson.

In 1910, he was sent to survey and report on Hainan Island, a large unexplored island off the Southern tip of China, populated with a head-hunting tribe. His personal diary, hand-drawn maps and silver chrome photographs of tribesmen and villages (never seen before by the Chinese or Westerners) is in the School of Oriental & African Studies in London.

Detail :

Newspaper - Source and date unknown - "DEATH OF MAJOR JOHN DE LUZE SIMONDS, D.S.O. - The Simonds' family, which has sustained some heavy bereavements during the past twelve months, is again thrown into mourning by the death of Captain (acting Major) John de Luze Simonds, D.S.O., Royal Garrison Artillery, third son of the late Mr. L. de. L. Simonds and Mrs. Simonds, of Audley's Wood, and brother of Mr. Eric Simonds. Deep sympathy with the family will be felt on all hands. Major Simonds met his death while in command of a heavy battery, R.G.A. When war broke out he was in India, and left for Egypt with a mountain battery. In December, 1914, he proceeded to France, where he has served almost continuously ever since. For a long period he was attached to the staff of the Royal Flying Corps as artillery liaison officer, and only a few weeks ago was transferred to the command of the battery. The deceased officer was in most of the fighting in the winter of 1914-15, and in most of the engagements since. A native of Reading, he was aged 32 and was educated at Summerfields, Oxford and Winchester College, where he was first on the role of scholars. He was subsequently at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, and joined the R.G.A. in 1903. For some years he was stationed in Malta and afterwards in Hong Kong, where he was aide-de-camp to Major-General Sir Charles Anderson, the commander-in-chief. He was employed on several important surveys in the hinterland of China, and the island of Hainan, for which he received much official kudos. On leaving the China station he was sent to India. He was granted the D.S.O. on January 1st this year, and mentioned in despatches a few days later. He obtained leave to attend the funeral of his father in December last, this being his last occasion home. The deceased officer was a man of fine physique, and of great intellectual attainments. He had made a deep study of languages and literature. A very keen mason he had give a great deal of time and application to the craft, and was a member of the Basingstoke Lodge, and the Old Wykehamists Lodge. He was unmarried."

John was killed in action at Mazingarbe on 22nd April 1917 while in command of a siege battery and is buried in the Mazingarbe communal cemetery extension, Bethune: Grave I.F.12."

Each year a poem is also read and this year it was the work of John de Luze Simonds OS. He survived three years of the Great War before succumbing to German shelling. The bloodstained poem written in his hand was found on his body:

"If I should die, be very full of pride
That I have died for England; Shed no tears
Because unhallowed ground enshrines my bones.
Think of me rather in some orchard plot
At peace with God, where some tall poplar tree
Uplifts my soul to Heaven - my weary soul
That looks for ever star-wards, nor avails.
For France is hallowed by your English dead
Where blaze the poppies like a scarlet wound,
Sprung from the blood of heroes; yesteryear
They led their lives in shop and mart
Thinking no evil and content to live
At peace with all around, but this same year
The poppy springs above their grave;
a wound Which they have died to salve. Be very proud
To number me among the deathless dead,
Along the trench the cornflower shimmers blue
Like eyes bestarred with tears; so long ago
We wore its bloom in pride of victory,
Where called the deep Cathedral chimes to prayer.
Oh the grey walls and warm red tiled roofs,
The Itchen's purling stream and velvet meads,
Where we have played together - never more
To lie beneath the trees and drink the sun."

H. & G. Simonds Ltd (Brewers)) At the Annual General Meeting of the shareholders in 1918 it was reported that three members of the family, Lieutenant G P Blackall Simonds, Major St John Quarry and Major John de Luze Simonds, had been killed in action during WW1 Ubique Lodge- Simonds: Joined 14 May 1906 - killed in action April 1917

He is commemorated further on the war memorial in St Leonard's Church, Cliddesden, Hampshire.

Masonic :

TypeLodge Name and No.Province/District :
Mother : St. John & St. Paul No. 349 E.C.Malta
Joined : Ubique No. 1789 E.C. London
Joined : Old Wykehamist No. 3548 E.C. London
Joined : Oakley No. 694 E.C. Hampshire & IOW

2nd December 1905
6th January 1906
2nd February 1906

Source :

The project globally acknowledges the following as sources of information for research across the whole database:

Additional Source:

Last Updated: 2020-11-23 13:06:13