-H.M.S. Hood Crew Information-
H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour
Memorials to Men Lost in the sinking

We will remember them
Chainbar divider

In Remembrance of
Percy Herbert Balch

Photo of
Date of birth: 24th August 1910
Place of birth: Alton, Hampshire, England
Parents: Jesse Philip and Emily Lucy Balch
Previous occupation: Training Ship Boy
Service: Royal Navy
Rank: Able Seaman
Service Number: P/JX 126181
Joined Hood First time: 16th June 1931
Left Hood First time: 4th January 1932
Joined Hood Second time: 2nd June 1939
Left Hood Second time: 24th May 1941 (loss of ship) (Able Seaman)
Click here to print memorial poster

Biographical Information: Percy was born on 24th August 1910 to Jesse and Emily Balch of Piplands, Binsted, Hampshire. As well as his parents, he had 2 sisters, 5 brothers and a 2 month old nephew.

Percy joined the Royal Navy as a Boy Seaman on 17th February 1926 in H.M.S. Impregnable at the age of 15. While serving in the Battleship H.M.S. Nelson he was made an Ordinary Seaman on 24th August 1928 and then an Able Seaman on 22nd February 1930 at the age of 19.

He first served in H.M.S. Hood from 16th June 1931 to 4th January 1932 and was drafted again to her from H.M.S. Vernon on 02 June 1939 as a Control Rating under development.

He was 30 years old. His Mother received his medals.

History of ships served in and rate held:

Date FromDate toShipRatingSource
17th February 192624th October 1926ImpregnableBoy 2nd ClassADM362/17
25th October 192614th January 1927ImpregnableBoy 1st ClassADM362/17
15th January 192726th August 1927Iron DukeBoy 1st ClassADM362/17
27th August 19272nd January 1928RevengeBoy 1st ClassADM362/17
3rd January 192823rd August 1928NelsonBoy 1st ClassADM362/17
24th August 192821st February 1930NelsonOrdinary SeamanADM362/17
22nd February 193025th April 1930NelsonAble SeamanADM363/522
26th April 19306th June 1930Victory I - IIIAble SeamanADM363/522
7th June 19306th October 1930Vernon (Wakeful)Able SeamanADM363/522
7th October 193028th October 1930Pembroke II - IV (Vivacious)Able SeamanADM363/522
29th October 193030th November 1930Pembroke II - IV (Wrestler)Able SeamanADM363/522
1st December 193015th June 1931Vernon (Wrestler)Able SeamanADM363/522
16th June 19314th January 1932HoodAble SeamanADM363/522
5th January 19324th April 1932Frobisher (C&M Group)Able SeamanADM363/522
5th April 19328th January 1935Royal SovereignAble SeamanADM363/522
9th January 193528th February 1935Victory IAble SeamanADM363/522
1st March 19352nd March 1936ExcellentAble SeamanADM363/522
3rd March 193631st March 1936Victory II (Fury)Able SeamanADM363/522
1st April 193612th July 1936St. Angelo (Fury)Able SeamanADM363/522
13th July 193630th September 1936Victory II (Fury)Able SeamanADM363/522
1st October 19361st December 1936Victory IAble SeamanADM363/522
2nd December 193619th January 1937ExcellentAble SeamanADM363/522
20th January 19371st March 1939LondonAble SeamanADM363/522
2nd March 193926th April 1939ExcellentAble SeamanADM363/522
27th April 19391st June1939Vernon (Anthony)Able SeamanADM363/522
2nd June 193924th May 1941HoodAble SeamanADM363/522

Additional Photos

Percy (holding book) and his brother Henry (kneeling on left) posing with shipmates aboard an unknown vessel

Hood Chapel, Church of St. John the Baptist, Boldre, Hampshire, England

Photos of the memorial

Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Southsea, Hampshire, England

Photos of the memorial

The part of the memorial in which the Hood casualty names can be found.
(Panels 45 to 61)

Percy's name is in Column 1 of Panel 47.

Detail of Percy's name.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission
'Register of Deaths of Naval Ratings' (data extracted by Director of Naval Personnel (Disclosure Cell), Navy Command HQ, 2009)
His great-nephew, Michael Nottage (photos & biographical information, September 2003, November 2008, July 2010, June 2011, January 2014, February 2015 & June 2016)