Elsie Ida Snow was born in Chelmsford and worked for a time as a draper’s assistant. She married at St. John’s Church three days after the outbreak of the First World War and the couple had a son in 1918. Seven years later she was widowed. During the Second World War she lived with her widowed mother in Goldlay Road, Chelmsford. She was killed there by German bomb during the heaviest air raid of the war on Chelmsford along with her mother and three neighbours.
Elsie was born in Chelmsford in 1891, the daughter of the cabinet maker Henry Miles Snow (1862-1926) and Alice Snow (nee Barnes) (1859-1943). her four siblings included Walter Ernest Snow (1886–1971), Alice Maud Snow (1888-1903), and Flora Emily Snow (1889-1974).
In 1891 the census found two month-old Elsie living with her parents and three siblings at 10 Roman Road in Chelmsford. Elsie was aged ten when recorded by the 1901 census living with her parents and three siblings at 14 Hall Street in Chelmsford.
A decade later the 1911 census listed 20 year-old Elsie still living at 14 Hall Street with her parents and two siblings. She was a draper's assistant.
Elsie Ida GLEDSTONE (nee SNOW), Civilian
Killed in an air raid on Goldlay Road, Chelmsford. Aged 51
Three years later, on 1st August 1914, (three days after the outbreak of the First World War) Elsie married Darlington-born Tom Stuart Patterson Gledstone at St. John’s Church in Moulsham. At the time she was 23 years old and resident in Baddow Road, Chelmsford. Her husband was eight years older, an engineer, and lived at 24 Hill Road in Springfield.
The couple had one child, Tom Gledstone (1918-1990).
However, their marriage was to be relatively short and he died in Chelmsford in 1925. At that time the couple were living at 46 Rainsford Road in Chelmsford. He left Elsie an estate valued at £368 13s. 7.
By 1943 Elsie was living with her widowed mother at 46 Goldlay Road in Chelmsford. In the early hours of 14th May that year Chelmsford experienced what was to prove to be its heaviest air raid of the war. In a sharp attack that lasted for just over an hour, the German air force, the Luftwaffe, dropped a large number of high explosive bombs, incendiaries and parachute landmines which caused extensive damage to residential, commercial and industrial properties in the town, and led to the deaths of more than 50 people.
Among the dead were 51 year-old Elsie and her mother, Alice Snow, killed when a 500 kg high explosive scored a direct hit on 45 & 46 Goldlay Road. Next door at number 45 the bomb claimed the lives of George William Sims, Florrie E. M. Sims and Lily Harriet Lidbetter.
Elsie was buried at Holy Trinity Church, Springfield on 19th May 1943.