A.E.Cain and Maggi Forrester:Two Nurses of the First World War

Roll of Honour Hinckley Rd Leicester PM School 1915
North Evington Military Hospital
AE Cain
AE Cain (left middle row) with patients
Maggi Forrester and her brother Fred (Royal Army Medical Corps)

The postcard size picture of the 1915 Roll of Honour, Hinckley Road Primitive Methodist School (Leicester) is included in an album of WW1 photos. The album was compiled by AE Cain, whose photo is on the Roll. She was a Voluntary Aid Detachment (VAD) nurse, who worked at the North Evington Military Hospital near Leicester, and later in the 73rd General Hospital in Deauville, France. She was in France on 11th November, 1918, the day the Armistice was signed.

The photo album came into my possession via my great aunt, Maggi (Madge) Forrester, whose photo is also on the Roll. Madge trained at Leicester Royal Infirmary and during the war worked at North Evington Military Hospital as a member of the Territorial Force Nursing Reserve. So it seems that Madge and AE Cain were nursing colleagues, as well as fellow teachers at the Hinckley Road Primitive Methodist Sunday School.

I know very little about AE Cain, not even her christian names, though she may have come from the Isle of Man, and perhaps had a brother Herbert who served in Egypt during WW1.

Madge and AE Cain both survived the war so the Roll of Honour must have been in recognition of those associated with the Hinckley Road PM School who were serving in 1915, rather than honouring those who had died. It is to be hoped that the gentlemen on the Roll also lived to see the signing of the Armistice.

Comments about this page

  • I am Amy Eleanors granddaughter, my family have been doing a family tree and have been looking for information about her nursing work during the war. This article  is very interesting.

    By Claire Allison (25/06/2015)
  • EA Cain (Bosworth) was my paternal Grandmother and I have a number of these pictures in my collection. I have recently started to trace her service in WW1 with limited success, so hopefully some of this will help. She trained as a nurse and midwife after WW1, then married. She worked with the Red Cross until her death.

    By Nicola Leather (nee Bosworth) (25/06/2015)
  • With thanks to the help of Steven Jackson of the Manx Museum, who searched WW1 Isle of Man newspaper archives, we have been able to identify A. E. Cain as Amy Eleanor ‘Ella’ Cain, born in Peel, Isle of Man, in 1893.

    In October 1915, she was the first of the local St John’s Ambulance Association Volunteers to be called up for active service.

    Ella worked throughout WWI as a VAD nurse. She received White Stripes for thirteen consecutive months’ service, and in 1917 was awarded Red Stripes which were a mark of special distinction, awarded for ‘proficiency in work and example in conduct’.

    Her two brothers, William Johnson (b.1894) and Robert Herbert (b.1897) served in the army in WW1.

    In 1924, Ella married Henry Donald Bosworth, and they had two children. She died in the Birkenhead District, Merseyside in 1976.

    By Jane Richardson (29/03/2015)
  • This is wonderful – it is the first Roll of Honour I have seen that includes women!  I do hope someone is able to identify A E Cain. There is more information about Maggi Forrester here.

    By Jill Barber (10/06/2014)

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