War Memorials - Surnames H

Index

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HAIRS, Martin Sidney Thomas (Revised 07/02/2015)
HAMBLY, Benjamin (Revised 05/02/2015)
HAMPTON, John Latham (Revised 15/02/2015)
HAMPTON, Walter (Revised 29/10/2013)
HANKINS, Thomas William (Revised 05/07/2017)
HANSFORD, Albert Vernon (New 09/04/2016)
HARKNETT, Alfred Stanley (Updated 18/09/2010)
HARKNETT, Arthur Sidney (Updated 25/02/2015)
HARLOW, William Richard (Revised 05/02/2013)
HARMAN, William Abraham (Revised 19/01/2014)
HARPER, Albert (Revised 24/03/2014)
HARRIS, E (New 18/01/2013)
HARRIS, Walter Stuart (Revised 22/09/2017)
HARRISON, Charles Hibbert (Revised 08/09/2013)
HARRISON, Thomas (New 21/08/2016)
HARROWER, Annie (New 31/03/2013)
HART, Frederick Alfred (Revised 06/12/2013)
HARVEY, Clement (Revised 03/02/2015)
HEFFERN, William (Updated 08/12/2014)
HEMMING, Edward George (Revised 21/01/2015)
HEPWORTH, Percy Walker (Revised 15/02/2014)
HERBERT, Robert Bingley (New 16/07/2014)
HERRON, Kenneth Chester (New 30/05/2014)
HEWITT, Ronald Denne (New 15/07/2012)
HIGGINS, Malcolm Leslie (Revised 01/03/2015)
HILL, Sidney L (Updated 08/07/2011)
HILL, Walter John (New 13/03/2013)
HOARE, Reginald Alexander (Revised 12/02/2014)
HOARE, Walter Stanley (Revised 12/02/2014)
HOCKLY, Nigel Alan (Updated 25/11/2009)
HODGSON, William (Updated 21/12/2014)
HOGARTH, Edward (New 12/01/2017)
HOLLINGSHEAD, William (New 07/09/2016)
HOPKINS, Ernest (Updated 22/12/2014)
HOPKINSON, Hugh James Pearson (Revised 11/03/2013)
HOWARD, Arthur (New 30/01/2017)
HOWSAM, Robert Franklin (New 01/02/2017)
HUMPHREY, Henry Arthur (New 18/06/2016)
HUNTER, Archibald Chalmers (New 19/02/2017)
HUNTER, William Edward (New 28/12/2012)
HUSSEY, Charles Francis (New 28/10/2013)
HYDE, George (Revised 11/12/2014)
If you are looking for someone whose name starts with a different letter please try:



Content


HAIRS Martin Sidney Thomas, Private. 22445.

13th Battalion East Surrey Regiment.
Killed in Action 9 April 1918, aged 34.

Martin's inscription on the Ploegsteert Memorial
Martin's inscription on the Ploegsteert Memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Martin Sidney Thomas Hairs was born in 1884 (GRO reference: Jun 1884 Westbury S 6a 272) to Henry William Hairs and Susan Hairs (nee Oakey). Martin has also been shown spelt Morton and Marton, and he has also been known by his second name of Sidney. His parents had married in 1879 in the Westbury on Severn registration district and went on to have seven known children.

MARTIN SIDNEY THOMAS HAIRS AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Arthur HenryBorn 1880 EwellBaptised 6 June 1880 St. Mary's Ewell.
Married Annie ???? 1903 Epsom registration district
Sarah AnnBorn: 1882 Westbury Gloucestershire
Died: 1904 Ewell
Baptised 5 January 1882 St. Mary's Ewell
Martin Sidney ThomasBorn: 1884 Westbury, Gloucestershire
Died: 9 April 1918 Belgium
No baptism found.
Married Margaret Harriet Weller 25 June 1910
Charles DouglasBorn: 1885 EwellBaptised 6 December 1885 St. Mary's Ewell.
Married Emily M. Higgins 1913 Epsom registration district
Harold AlfredBorn: 1887 EwellBaptised 3 April 1887 St. Mary's Ewell
Emily LilyBorn: 1889 EwellBaptised 1 September 1889 St. Mary's Ewell as Emily Lilly Gwendoline AYRES.
Married Emmanuel George Baker 8 November 1910 St. John's church, Old Malden
Harry EllisBorn: 7 June 1893: Ewell
Died: 1921 Hertfordshire
No baptism found.
Served in the Royal Field Artillery. Awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.
Contracted malaria whilst serving in Salonika.
MARTIN SIDNEY THOMAS HAIRS AND HIS HALF SIBLINGS
Louisa MayBorn: 3 May 1914 EwellBaptised St. Mary's Ewell
George HenryBorn: 29 December 1916Baptised St. Mary's Ewell
William EmanuelBorn: 27 June 1920Baptised St. Mary's Ewell
Leslie JamesBorn: 10 October 1923Baptised St. Mary's Ewell

In the 1881 census, before Martin was born, the family lived in Kingston Road, Ewell. Martin's father was a 22 year old farm labourer, his mother was aged 21. He had a brother, Arthur Henry, aged 11 months. Samuel Oakey, the family head's brother in law, was living with them on census night.

In the 1891 census the family were still living in Kingston Road, and Martin had four more siblings, Sarah Ann aged 9, Charles Douglas aged 5, Harold Alfred aged 4 and Emily Lily aged 1. The 1899 West Street School admission register records that Harry Ellis Hairs' family was living in Bradford Cottage.

In the 1901 census the family was living at "Bankside", Kingston Road, Ewell. Martin's father was then a head carter on a farm. Another sibling had arrived, Harry Ellis aged 7. Martin was a 17 year old farm labourer, and is shown under his second name, Sidney.

When Martin's mother died in 1908, her name was recorded as Lily Susan Hairs.

It would seem that Martin preferred to use his middle name as on 25 June 1910, in St Martin of Tours church, Epsom, 27-year-old Martin used 'Sidney' when he married 24-year-old Margaret Harriet Weller, the daughter of George Weller. At the time of his marriage Martin was living at 21 Adelphi Road, Epsom and Margaret at 18 Carter Cottages, Epsom.

When the 1911 census was taken Martin and his wife were living in the Benfleet Hall Lodge, Benhill Wood Road, Sutton where Martin was working as a domestic gardener. He however recorded himself as 'Sidney' on the census form and gave his place of birth as Huntley, Gloucester. Martin's 52-year-old widowed father Henry, was living at 2 Branford Cottage, Kingston Road, Ewell, with Martin's 17-year-old brother Henry (Harry). Both were working as carters. Also living there, as 'House keeper', was 26-year-old Louisa Last Braybrooke. Martin's father stated that he had been married for 30 years and that one of his 7 children had died. The enumerator however crossed out this information, as Henry was a widower. Martin's brother Harold had also married in 1910 but spelt his surname as 'Ayres' when he filled in his 1911 census form.

On 17 April 1911, a few days after the 1911 census was taken, Martin's father Henry, being twice her age, married his young housekeeper Louisa in St. Mary's church Ewell. They had four children, Martin's half siblings.

Martin and Margaret's daughter Irene May was born in the later part of 1912.

Martin attested on 12 December 1915 at Wandsworth, aged 31 years and 8 months. He was 5 feet 4 inches tall, weighed 139 lbs, and had a chest measurement of 38 inches with an expansion of 3 inches. He was a gardener and lived at 54 Smeaton Road, Southfields. This address was still recorded as Martin and Margaret's home in the 1918 Electoral Registers.

No. 54 Smeaton Road
No. 54 Smeaton Road
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Martin served in the 13th Battalion East Surrey Regiment (Wandsworth Pals), which was in the 119th Brigade 40th Division. On the morning of 9 April 1918 two companies of the 13th Battalion East Surrey Regiment were in the front line at Fleurbaix near Armentières. At 4am the Germans commenced a violent bombardment with gas and high explosive shells, on the British front line from Lens to Armentières. This was the start of the Battle of the Lys (operation Georgette). The second of General Ludendorff's five attacks in 1918 designed to deliver a knock out blow before the Americans arrived in force. By 29 April, in some parts of the line, the enemy had made advances of about 10 miles. However, they could not break through the British line and threaten the vital Channel ports through which the BEF was supplied.

By about 9am Martin's Battalion was surrounded, but a few managed to fight their way back to the village of Sailly-sur-Lys. The 1924 East Surrey history tells us that seven other ranks were killed, 80 were wounded, but that 437 were missing. I assume that many of the missing were taken prisoner. The Soldiers Died CD states that 51 were killed in action on 9 April 1918 and that Martin Sidney Thomas Hairs was one of them.

He is commemorated on Panel 6 of the Ploegsteert Memorial to the missing. The CWGC states that he was the:
Son of Henry and Susan Hairs, of Bradford Cottages, Kingston Road, Ewell, and the husband of Margaret Harriet Hairs, of 18, Carters Cottages, Epsom.
View of the Ploegsteert Memorial
View of part of the Ploegsteert Memorial
Views of the Ploegsteert Memorial
Images courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Martin was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The St. Martin's church roll of honour states that:
MARTIN SIDNEY THOMAS HAIRS, was reported missing at Armentières and was officially presumed to have been killed in action on the 9th April 1918.
Martin's father Henry died in 1932 and his stepmother Louisa in 1935. Martin's widow and daughter lived at 48, Green Wrythe Lane, Carshalton until at least 1945.

EP SM

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HAMBLY Benjamin, Lance Corporal. 6197

17th Lancers (Duke of Cambridge's Own).
Killed in Action 13 May 1915, aged 28

Benjamin's inscription on the Menin Gate Memorial
Benjamin's inscription on the Menin Gate Memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Benjamin Holland Hambly was born in 1887 in Tynemouth North Shields to William and Isabella Hambly, nee Merren. (Mar 1887 Tynemouth Vol 10b Page 205).

Benjamin's father William was born in 1853 in St. Ives Cornwall while his mother Isabella was born in 1861 in Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland. The couple married in 1880 in Tynemouth North Shields. His parents were not living together when any census was taken.

In the 1881 census, before Benjamin was born, his 20 year old mother Isabella, was recorded as being married and living with her first daughter Christian aged 1 month, her parents John, born 1824, and Mary, born 1828, and sisters Mary and Margaret, at 3 Star and Garter Quay, North Shields. Christian was named after her father William's mother but was registered as Kate in the GRO records. Isabella's father's occupation was recorded as "mariner". Isabella's husband William was not recorded as being there on the census night. Benjamin's older brother William was born in 1883.

In the 1891 census Benjamin, aged 4, was living with his mother Isabella, grandmother Mary Merren, and older siblings Kate and William in Kings Street, Tynemouth, North Shields. His mother was noted as being married but once again her husband was not recorded there on the census night.

Isabella was found in the 1901 census as a patient in the District Northumberland County Lunatic Asylum. She was still recorded as being married. Benjamin, his father William and the rest of the family are, as yet, unfound in this census.

Benjamin's mother Isabella was aged 40 when she died in 1902 in Morpeth, Northumberland. She was buried locally on 15 March.

Benjamin was a Private in the 17th Lancers stationed in India when the 1911 census was taken. His age was recorded as 26 instead of 24. His brother William was a "Stoker 1st Class, non-executive" aboard H.M. Destroyer 'Porcupine', a torpedo boat that was docked in Newcastle Quay. The whereabouts of their sister Kate is unknown.

Cap badge of the 17th Lancers
The Death or Glory Cap badge of the 17th Lancers

Benjamin was commemorated on the Long Grove Hospital memorial to the staff killed in the war, so must have worked at the hospital before the war. The book 'RECORD OF WAR SERVICE London County Council Staff 1914-1918', states that he was killed near the Ypres-Roulers road.

On Benjamin's medal card it shows that he joined the 17th Lancers and was a Lance Corporal, regimental number 6197 and that he went to France on 6 October 1914.

The 17th was part of the Sialkot Cavalry Brigade and 1st Indian Cavalry Division, which arrived in Marseilles France on 7 November 1914 but as Infantry instead of their usual role of Cavalry. The 17th would find its role severely limited from this point on by machine guns, barbed wire and mud.

By this time, the initial mobile phase of the war had become one of static attrition warfare and as a result the 17th spent most of their time taking a turn in the trenches by plugging gaps and relieving infantry battalions that had taken beatings on the front line, as well as training for the possibility of an infantry breakthrough, which the cavalry could exploit.

The small Belgium town Ypres saw the second Battle of Ypres (April to May 1915) opened with a chlorine gas attack by the Germans., This opened a large gap in the British lines but the Germans were unable to exploit the situation before the British and Canadians had filled the gap with reserves. More gas attacks followed, and the Allied forces had to withdrawal a small area. On 13 May 1915, during the second Battle of Ypres, huge high explosive shells burst on the parapets, completely shattering the trenches.

The following is an extract from the eighth Despatch of Field Marshal Sir John French, Commander in Chief of the British Expeditionary Force. Printed in the Second Supplement to the London Gazette of 10 July 1915.

"On the 13th the various reliefs having been completed without incident, the heaviest bombardment yet experienced broke out at 4.30 a.m., and continued with little intermission throughout the day. At about 7.45 a.m. the Cavalry Brigade astride the railway, having suffered very severely, and their trenches having been obliterated, fell back about 800 yards. The North Somerset Yeomanry on the right of the Brigade, although also suffering severely, hung on to their trenches throughout the day, and actually advanced and attacked the enemy with the bayonet. The Brigade on its right also maintained its position; as did also the Cavalry Division, except the left squadron, which, when reduced to sixteen men, fell back. The 2nd Essex Regiment, realising the situation, promptly charged and retook the trench, holding it till relieved by the Cavalry. Meanwhile a counter-attack by two Cavalry Brigades was launched at 2.30 p.m., and succeeded in spite of very heavy shrapnel and rifle fire, in regaining the original line of trenches, turning out the Germans who had entered it, and in some cases pursuing them for some distance. But a very heavy shellfire was again opened on them, and they were again compelled to retire to an irregular line in rear, principally the craters of shell holes. The enemy in their counter-attack suffered very severe losses. The fighting in other parts of the line was little less severe. The 1st East Lancashire Regiment were shelled out of their trenches, but their support company and the 2nd Essex Regiment, again acting on their own initiative, won them back. The enemy penetrated into the farm at the north-east corner of the line, but the 1st Rifle Brigade, after a severe struggle, expelled them. The 1st Hampshire Regiment also repelled an attack, and killed every German who got within fifty yards of their trenches. The 5th London Regiment, despite very heavy casualties, maintained their position unfalteringly. At the southern end of the line the left Brigade was once again heavily shelled, as indeed was the whole front. At the end of a very hard day's fighting our line remained in its former position, with the exception of the short distance lost by one Cavalry Division. Later, the line was pushed forward, and a new line was dug in a less exposed position, slightly in rear of that originally held. The night passed quietly."

It was on the 13 May 1915 at Ypres that Lance Corporal Benjamin Hambly was killed in action, as were four other men from the 17th Lancers. Benjamin is commemorated on Panel 5 of the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Belgium.

Benjamin's medal card
Benjamin's medal card.
Image courtesy of Ancestry.co.uk (Link opens in a new window)
Ancestry Logo
Benjamin was awarded the 1914 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.

Benjamin is remembered on the Ashley Road memorial, and also appeared on the Long Grove Hospital memorial which was lost when Long Grove closed and became a housing estate.

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HAMPTON John Latham, Lance Corporal. 199.

1/5 London Regiment (London Rifle Brigade).
Killed in Action 3 May 1915, aged 38.

JL Latham
John Latham Hampton

John Latham Hampton was born in Brixton, London in 1877 (GRO reference: Sep 1877 Lambeth 1d 505) to Charles Alfred and Emma Hampton (nee Latham). His parents had married on 26 June 1875 in St George's Church, Camberwell.

In the 1881 census the family lived at 'Chudleigh', 5 Ross Road, Wallington, Surrey. John's 33 year old father was a 'Main Clerk to a ship owner'. His mother was aged 25, and he had three brothers, Philip aged 6, Edward Blissset aged 5 and George Chudleigh aged 2. There were two servants, a housemaid and a nursery maid.

John Latham Hampton And His Siblings
Name Born - Died Notes
Philip A Born: 1875 Brockley (1881 census): Brixton (1891 census) Not found in GRO records
Edward Blisset Born: 1876 Brixton
Died: 2 February 1911
Edward's middle name was his paternal grandmother's maiden name.
John Latham Born: 1877 Brixton
Died: 3 May 1915 Belgium
 
George Chudleigh Born: 1879 Brixton
Died: 18 July 1949
Married Kathleen Margaret Allen 1914. Their son, Denis Allen, RAF, killed in flying accident 12 April 1940
Frank Anthony Born: 1888 Wallington 1911 census - Medical Student
1914 passenger list - Doctor
Robert Walter Born: 1889 Ewell Married Louie Amy Webb 1918
Walter Born: 1892 Ewell
Died: 14 May 1915
Died of wounds received in Belgium on 16 January 1915

By the 1891 census they were living at 'Downs View', Epsom Road, Ewell. John's father, Charles Alfred was now a ship owner himself, and two more sons had been born, Frank Anthony aged 3, and Robert Walter aged 1. They also employed two domestic servants.

The 1901 census shows the family living in Epsom Road, Ewell, presumably still in 'Downs View'. John, aged 23, was working as a clerk to Stock Jobbers. Brothers Frank and Robert, are shown as pupils at 'Uplands House School' Downs Road, as was the youngest brother Walter aged 9, who was also to die in the Great War. The family still employed two servants at this time.

Seleng House
Seleng House (Taken from a photocopy of a newspaper article)
Copyright Image reproduced with permission of the Epsom Advertiser part of the Trinity South newspaper group

John (or Jack as he was known) attended Whitgift Grammar School, in South Croydon where he had been a keen sportsman. He played cricket and football for the school, was prominent in boxing and athletics, and was a member of the Shooting Eight which won the Ashburton Shield at Bisley. After leaving Whitgift School he entered the office of Le Blanc Smith and Co., becoming a member of the Stock Exchange in 1901 and a partner in 1904. In 1912 he joined Durham Stokes and Co as a partner.

In 1897 he had joined the London Rifle Brigade (LRB), a territorial unit, enlisting at the Sun Street H.Q. having paid the £1 annual subscription fee. During the early monthas of 1900 he saw active service with City Imperial Volunteers (C.I.V) Mounted Infantry in the South African War, but had to be invalided home with enteric fever. He was awarded the Queen's South Africa medal with clasps for Paardeberg, Dreifontein and Cape Colony.

He became a member of the Stock Exchange in 1901 and a partner with Le Blanc Smith and Co. in 1904.

By 1911 John and his family had moved to 'Seleng House' in Epsom Road. John was now aged 33 and working as a Stock Jobber in the London Stock Exchange. His father filled in the census form stating that he and his wife had been married for 37 years and that two of their seven children had died.

In 1912 John joined Durham Stokes and Co. as a partner.

On the outbreak of war he walked back through that same big oak door at Sun Street to volunteer once again with the old Corps at the end of August 1914. At first his services were rejected on the grounds of age, but he was eventually accepted as Private No.199. He was probably assigned to the Corps' 2nd Battalion for a while after re-joining, before being transferred into the 1st Battalion and sailing from Southampton for Le Havre, France on 4 November 1914. He arrived in the trenches in mid-November 1914. Jack's brother, Walter, served in the same battalion. He also had another brother serving at the Front and a third brother waiting to be posted.

Jack and his brother Walter were in the trenches at Christmas 1914 and would probably taken part in the unofficial Christmas truce. See extract from K.W. Mitchinson's book on the London Rifle Brigade 'Gentlemen and Officers'.

Jack was shot through the head by a sniper on 3 May 1915. This is particularly poignant because he was about to receive a commission into the East Surrey Regiment. At the time he was part of the 11th Brigade 4th Division, fighting in the battle of St Julien, during the 2nd Battle of Ypres. He died within an hour aged 38. This battle saw the first use of poison gas on 22 April 1915. The LRB had seen some of the hottest fighting and suffered terribly, so that one General described them as 'the finest battalion God ever made. They were constantly exposed to severe shelling but their courage never broke'. On 3 May 1915, 49 men from the LRB died.

Jack's school friend, Lance Corporal Banks was serving along side him in the LRB and was killed ten days later. Letters from their officer, Lt. L. W. Trevelyan, to their parents was reproduced in the Epsom Advertiser on 28 May 1915. He referred to their joint contribution to the war effort :
"It is almost impossible to write any sort of appreciation of what those two men were to their company, their platoon and to me personally.------ It was the spirit and experience of those two that made the platoon what it was and many a time they have given comfort and courage in difficult times.--- The men have been magnificent all through and it is your son and Banks that I have put down the credit of most of it. Apart from always being ready to do anything, they have always been so cheery and full of confidence that they have infected the younger and less experienced men around them with something of their own spirit."

Photograph of John Hampton (standing) and his school friend FL Banks of Addiscombe (sitting) taken from the Epsom and Ewell Advertiser 18th May 1915.   Both went to the Whitgift School and were killed within a few days of each other.
Photograph of John Hampton (standing) and his school friend FL Banks of Addiscombe (sitting) taken from the Epsom and Ewell Advertiser 18th May 1915. Both went to the Whitgift School and were killed within a few days of each other.

Jack Hampton was well known and esteemed locally, particularly for sport. He played football for Ewell Football Club and is mentioned in Richard Lambert's book 'Two Legs Not Four', and was also one of the secretaries of the Epsom Lawn Tennis tournament. His death was also acknowledged by the Ewell Parochial Church Council, as he had always taken a great interest in parish matters. They passed a vote of sympathy and sent a letter to his parents.

Administration of his estate was granted to his father on 5 July 1915 and his effects were valued at £105 2s 1d.

Jack Hampton is commemorated officially by the CWGC on the Menin Gate Memorial Panel 52 & 54 in Ypres.

He is also remembered on the family plot in St Mary's Churchyard, the Stock Exchange war memorial, Upland House School memorial and Epsom golf club memorial.

The CWGC states that he was the:
Brother of Mr G.C. Hampton of "Firs", College Road, Epsom, Surrey. Served in the South African Campaign.
John Hampton's inscription on the Menin Gate Memorial
John Hampton's inscription on the Menin Gate Memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Jack's mother Emma died in 1917 and his father Charles Alfred Hampton died on 20 November 1922. He was joint managing director of James Nourse, ship owners, and left £135,863.

The Hampton brothers inscription in St Mary's Churchyard
The Hampton brothers inscription in St Mary's Churchyard
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©

BH EW EGC PG UHS

Source of additional information is an obituary obtained from the London Stock Exchange.

With thanks to Ajax Bardrick for supplying additional information.

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HAMPTON Walter, Private. 9794.

5th London Regiment, London Rifle Brigade
Died of wounds 14 May 1915, aged 23

Walter Hampton
Walter Hampton
Image reproduced with the permission of Sherborne School Archives © 2013

Walter Hampton, known as Dick, was born in Ewell on 30 March 1892 (GRO reference: Jun 1892 Epsom 2a 23), the youngest of seven brothers. See entry for John Latham Hampton for other family details.

In 1901 he was a pupil along with brothers Frank and Robert at Uplands House School in Downs Road, Epsom. From 1905-1909 he was a boarder at Sherborne School.

In the 1911 census he is shown as living with his parents and three of his brothers, John, George and Robert in the 20 roomed Seleng House. Walter was 19 years old and working as an insurance broker's clerk. The census showed that his parents had had 7 children but by 1911 only 5 were still living.

The 1914 electoral roll shows him living at 'Downs View,' Epsom Road, Ewell.

From the Epsom Advertiser. Like his brother, Walter had joined the London Rifle Brigade (LRB) in January 1910 but after a while resigned. However, on the outbreak of war on 5 August 1914 he rejoined at the Sun Street headquarters, having paid his £1 annual subscription and thus served in the same battalion as his brother John.

He sailed from Southampton to Le Havre, France, aboard SS Chyebassa, on 4 November 1914. On 16 January 1915 he was shot through the neck by a sniper whilst wiring and evacuated back to England. He died in a nursing home, the first of the Home Hospital's Association (for paying patients) establishments at 16, Fitzroy Square, London on 14 May 1915 aged 23. The funeral service was held at St Mary's Ewell on 17 May at 3.45pm and he was buried in a family plot in St Mary's Churchyard, Ewell, Old Ground 182A. There is no official CWGC marker, because for soldiers buried in the UK it was a matter for the family to decide how best to commemorate their loved one, which could have included a CWGC stone had they desired one

No other LRB soldier is shown as dying on 16 January 1915, and they were not engaged in any major battles at the time. Walter was wounded just 22 days after the famous 1914 Christmas truce when British and German troops got out of their trenches and held impromptu football matches. The London Rifle Brigade were known to have taken part in the Christmas truce, and it is most likely that Walter and his brother John Latham both joined in.

He is buried in St Mary's Churchyard, Ewell, Old Ground 182A, having died on 14 May 1915 of wounds received on 16th January 1915.

Closeup of The Hampton brothers inscription in St Mary's Churchyard

Administration of his estate was granted to his father on 5 July 1915 and his effects were valued at £488 17s 11d.

He was awarded the 1914 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

It is interesting to note that a nephew, Denis Allen Hampton (the son of his brother George) a Sergeant pilot in the RAF was killed on active service on 12 April 1940.

Private Walter HAMPTON's inscription in St Mary's Churchyard

With thanks to Ajax Bardrick for supplying additional information.

BH EW (Buried St Mary's) UHS

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HANKINS Thomas William, Corporal. 938.

7th Battalion East Surrey Regiment.
Killed in action 12 August 1916, aged 23.

Thomas William Hankins was born in 1893 in Loxwood, Sussex, the eldest son of William Edward and Mary Ann (nee Knight) Hankins. Thomas was registered as William Thomas (GRO reference: Sep 1893 Horsham 2b 327) and baptised as such on 17 September 1893 in Rudgwick, Sussex, where his parents had married on Christmas Eve the year before.

William and his siblings
Name Born - Died Notes
William Thomas
(Thomas William)
Born: 1893 Loxwood, Sussex
Died: 12 August 1916, France
 
Ernest Charles Born: 1895 Ewhurst, Surrey
Baptised 10 Mar 1895 Ewhurst.
Married Minnie Chapman in 1922.
Frederick James Born: 1897 Ewhurst, Surrey Baptised 16 May 1897 Rudgwick, Sussex.
Married Beatrice M. Williams in 1932.
Lillian A. (Lily) Born: 1899 Holmbury St. Mary, Surrey No baptism found online.
John Henry Born: 1901 Shere, Surrey Baptised 26 May 1901 St. James church, Shere. Address Gomshall.
Eva Annie Born: 1903 Holmbury St. Mary, Surrey No baptism found online.
Married Charles G. C. Conway in 1925.
Ethel Mary Born: 2 May 1905 Headley, Surrey Baptised 2 July 1905 in St. Mary the Virgin church, Headley.
Married George Wilfred Charles Hersey in 1932.
Percy Alec Born: 19 October 1907 Headley, Surrey Baptised 1 December 1907 in St. Mary the Virgin church, Headley.
Married Florence M. Wheaton in 1924.
Muriel Ellen Born: 28 May 1909 Headley, Surrey Baptised 4 July 1909 in St. Mary the Virgin church, Headley.
Married Arthur S. Geal in 1938.

By 1895 Thomas William and his parents had moved to Ewhurst in Surrey where his brother Ernest was born. The family may have also lived in Holmsbury St. Mary, Surrey before moving to the village Gomshall, Surrey.

When the 1901 census was taken Thomas William was aged 8 and he and his family were living at Goose Green, Gomshall. His 29 year old father was working on a farm as a carter while his 30 year old mother looked after Thomas William and his siblings Ernest aged 6, Lillian aged 2 and the newly born John. They had a boarder Edward Readford living with them and a visitor, 14 year old Milly Pavey. Thomas William's 3 year old brother Frederick was staying with his grandparents, William and Mary Ann Hankins, in Wisborough Green, Sussex.

The family moved to Headley, Surrey, where Thomas's sister Ethel Mary was baptised on 2 July 1905 in St. Mary the Virgin church, where the rectors had the perhaps unusual practise of recording the sponsors or godparent's names in the baptism register.

When the 1911 census was taken, the family of 11 was recorded as living in just three rooms, one of which was the kitchen, on Hurst Farm. Aged 17, Thomas William was recorded as just 'Thomas' by his father. His father also stated that he and his wife of 19 years had had nine children, all surviving, and that he was a waggoner on the farm, as was his 16 year old son Ernest. Thomas William was working as a farm labourer while his mother looked after his younger siblings.

Thomas William attested in Epsom on 3 September 1914 into the East Surrey Regiment. He was 21 years old, 5 feet 8½ inches tall, weighed 162 lbs, had a chest measurement of 38½ inches with an expansion of 4½ inches, worked as a labourer and had been born in Rudgwick.

Thomas William served with the 7th Battalion East Surrey Regiment, which was in the 37th Brigade, 12th Division. He sailed with the battalion from Folkestone, on Cross Channel Ship 'Victoria' and landed at Boulogne on 2 June 1915.

On 12 August 1916 his battalion was ordered to make a night attack on enemy trenches just north of Ovillers, in the Battle of the Somme. British artillery commenced an intense bombardment on the enemy's front line, commencing at 10.30pm and ending at 10.33pm. The enemy responded with machine-gun fire and bombs (hand grenades), which made it impossible to get near the trench. Further attempts were made but these also failed. The enemy held their trenches here in great strength; that and the fact that it was extremely difficult to keep direction due to huge craters caused by our bombardment and trench mortars, meant that the attack was unsuccessful.

Fifty two men from the 7th East Surreys lost their lives on 12/13 August 1916 including Thomas William killed in action on 12 August. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the missing.

Thomas William Hankins's inscription on the Thiepval Memorial
Thomas William Hankins's inscription on the Thiepval Mem.orial
Image courtesy of Clive Giilbert © 2017

He was awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.

Thomas William was a member of the Wellington Branch of the Ancient Order of Foresters and was commemorated on their, now lost, memorial. He is also commemorated in St. Mary's Church, Headley, and Rudgwick War Memorial.

AOF

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HANSFORD Albert Vernon, Private 424871

8th Battalion Canadian Infantry (Manitoba Regiment).
Died of Wounds 6 December 1917, aged nearly 20.


Albert Vernon Hansford, the son of Alfred Albert and Elizabeth Jane Hansford (nee Hambly), was born on 20 December 1897 in Torbrook Mines, Annapolis, Nova Scotia, Canada. His father came from Devon and his mother from Cornwall. They married in the Lennoxville Methodist church, Quebec, Canada on 15 June 1893 and had 7 known children.

Albert's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Albert's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2016

ALBERT VERNON HANSFORD AND HIS SIBLINGS AND HALF SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Percy Lisgar HansfordBorn: 19 January 1894
Died: 6 June 1913
Fell from a locomotive tender and received a severe blow to the back of his head
Edwin Arnold HansfordBorn: 1 December 1895
Died: 1959
Also served: Attested 22 September 1914. Wounded 26 September 1916, Thiepval. Convalesced at Woodcote Park
Albert Vernon HansfordBorn: 20 December 1897
Died: 6 December 1917 Epsom
 
Cecil Hambly HansfordBorn: 6 February 1901
Died: 1964
Also served: Attested 3 April 1915. Wounded
Ralph Sponagle HansfordBorn: 1884 Killerig
Died: 1968
 
Isabella (Bella) Lorna HansfordBorn: 7 December 1904
Died: 1995
 
Frank Stanley HansfordBorn: 5 January 1906
Died: 1985
 
Walter Oscar StevensBorn: 1 September 1910
Died: 11 January 1928
Half brother
Winnie Savory StevensBorn: 1911
Died: 1995
Half sister
Cervin Kitchener StevensBorn: 9 September 1916
Died: 1974
Half brother. Baptised in the field into the Catholic Church in Rimmi, Italy 1944

Albert was aged 3 when the 1901 Canadian census was taken and the family were recorded as living in Meadowvale, Annapolis, Nova Scotia. The census records that his Methodist parents had immigrated to Canada in 1895 where his father became a farmer.

After Albert's father death in 1906, his mother married again and the 1911 Canadian census records Albert, aged 14, and his siblings Cecil, Ralph, Bella and Frank, as the stepchildren of 25 year old John Stevens, a Presbyterian miner, living in Torbrook. His mother was aged 39 and had had another son, Walter Stevens, in 1910. Albert's half sister Winnie was born later that year.

Aged 17, Albert was given the service number 424871 when on Christmas Eve 1914, having been working as a farm hand, he went to Brandon, Manitoba and attested into the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force. Adding a year to his age, he gave his birthday as 20 December 1896 and his next of kin as 'Mary Jane Stevens', of Torbrook Mines, Annapolis, Nova Scotia; however, Nova Scotia had been crossed out and Iowa, U.S.A. added. 'Mary Jane' we believe was in fact his mother, Elizabeth Jane.

During his medical he was described as being '18' years old, 5 feet 8¼ inches tall, having a 35 inch chest with 5 inch expansion, a dark complexion, brown eyes and dark hair. He gave Baptist as his religion.

Albert, initially assigned to the 45th Reserve Battalion, embarked for England from Halifax, Canada aboard SS Lapland on 13 March 1916 and arrived on 25 March. Whilst stationed at Moore Barracks, Shorncliffe, on 3 June 1916, Albert was diagnosed with influenza, and admitted to hospital but had recovered by 10 June and was discharged.

On 18 June 1916 Albert was transferred to the 8th Battalion and embarked for France aboard SS Baltic.

At 4.25a.m. on 15 August 1917 Albert's battalion attacked Hill 70, north of the town of Lens. In the attack Albert's spine was seriously wounded by shrapnel and he was admitted to No. 4 Canadian Casualty Clearing Station at Longuinesse. By 20 August he had been evacuated to England and was admitted to Horton War Hospital, Epsom. On 6 September he was declared to be 'Seriously Ill' and by 1 December he was 'Dangerously Ill'

Albert died on 6 December, two weeks before his 20th birthday and was buried in Epsom Cemetery in plot K240 on 10 December 1917. His is commemorated on the CWGC Screen Wall in Epsom Cemetery, and is also commemorated on the Middleton, Nova Scotia war memorial and in the Torbrook Mines United Church Cemetery family plot.

The following is from website http://www.bowyerfamily.org/hansford/h1463.htm
Albert joined the Baptist Church when he was about 15 while working for Leslie Armstrong--against his mother's wishes. (Their father had requested that all the children be brought up Methodist just before he died.) At about 16, he went to Manitoba and enlisted in the Canadian Army.

While picking up wounded soldiers in France during World War I, he was struck by shrapnel in the chest, and was paralysed from the chest down. He would write letters lying on his back. He talked of wanting to come home. The government offered to pay for his mother to go to England to visit him before he died, but she declined. She had sprained her ankle on board ship going to Canada when she was 13. He wasn't allowed to go home, and he died and was buried at Epsom, England.
Albert's medals, memorial plaque and scroll, and memorial cross were sent to his mother between 22 May 1920 and 26 April 1922.

After Albert's mother died on 17 June 1925, the local newspaper, Outlook, ran an obituary which included the following:
In 1913 her oldest son, Percy, was killed in a railway accident in the West and was brought home for burial. In 1914, when the Great War was declared, three of her noble and patriotic sons, namely, Edwin and Albert, then of Winnipeg, and Cecil at home, were among the first to enlist, to face the foe and fight for our country's freedom. Two were seriously wounded, Edwin and Albert, one proving fatal, and is now resting in his mother's country, while we think of Albert as one of our heroes: Greater love hath no man.
CWGC

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HARKNETT Alfred Stanley, Private. GS/25346.

32nd Bn, (City of London) Royal Fusiliers.
Killed in Action 15 September 1916, aged 28

Alfred's headstone in the Delville Wood Cemetery, Longueval
Alfred's headstone in the Delville Wood Cemetery, Longueval
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

Alfred Stanley Harknett was born in 1888 in the Bideford registration district of Devon (GRO reference: Jun 1888 Bideford 5b 505) to Frederick Thomas and Ann Harknett(nee Rodgman). There is a marriage entry for Frederick Thomas Hacknett and Ann Rodgman (GRO reference: Mar 1883 Bideford 5b 807). We think this should read Harknett, and had at some stage been wrongly transcribed.

Frederick and Ann were living with their family at 55 Temperley Road, Clapham when the 1891 census was taken. Frederick, born in 1859 in Brixton, Surrey, was a gardener. Ann, his wife, was born in 1860 in Bideford, Devon as were their children Mildred, born in 1886, Marion, born in 1887, and Alfred Stanley in 1888. The two younger children, Edith born in 1890 and Ernest born in 1891, were both born in Clapham.

By the time the next census was taken in 1901 the family had moved to Stanwell in Middlesex. Frederick was now working as a Market Gardener's foreman to support his large family. The family had increased in number but Ernest had died aged 1 (GRO reference: Dec 1891 1 Wandsworth 1d 440). Wilfred Cyril had been born in 1893 (he also served in the war) and Lillian in 1894 both in Balham, Elsie in 1895 and Mida in 1898 both in Southgate and Arthur Sidney in 1899 in Harmondsworth, Middlesex. (Arthur Sidney was also killed in the war).

The 1911 census shows the family living at 3, St Martin's Terrace, Church Road, Epsom. Alfred's father was working as a self employed landscape gardener. Another sibling had arrived, Edward Frank now aged 8. Alfred's mother stated that she had given birth to 14 children and that 11 were still living.

In the 1905 edition of Kelly's Directory, Alfred's father Frederick was a 'gardener-bailiff' at the epileptic colony, Hook Road, and from 1922 to 1938 he was a nurseryman living at 41 Church Road. (Between 1934 and 1938 Alfred's brother Wilfred Cyril was nurseryman living in Chessington Road, West Ewell).

Alfred attested in Epsom on 17 November 1915 into the 16 (Reserve) Battalion Royal Fusiliers (RF). He was 26 years old, 5 feet 4 ½ inches tall, weighed 118lbs, and had a chest measurement of 34 ¼ inches with an expansion of 3 inches. He worked as a gardener and lived at 41, Church Road, Epsom.

41 Church Road, Epsom
41 Church Road, Epsom
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Alfred transferred to the 32 Battalion RF which was in the 124 Brigade, 41 Division. The Battalion fought on the Somme in the Battle known as the Battle of Flers - Courcelette, when tanks were used for the first time. The 4th army (of which 32 RF were a part), with the Reserve Army and the French, were to capture the enemy's system of defences up to and including the line Morval - Les Boeufs - Guedecourt - High Wood. The 32 RF with the 26 RF were to attack in support of 10 Queens and 21 KRRC.

Flers Map - Click image to enlarge
Flers Map - Click image to enlarge

They were to attack in four waves, with no more than 50 yards between each wave. The first wave to attack 50 yards behind the last wave of the 10 Queens. The 32 Battalion war diary tells us that:

"the 4th wave will garrison SWITCH TRENCH from COCOA LANE (exclusive) to CADDY LANE (inclusive) and will open up CADDY LANE and connect it with FLARE LANE (the most Northerly point of DELVILLE WOOD,) (Unless this work is done by a Pioneer Battalion.)"
The Battalion was to be in its assembly positions in Green Trench and Edge Trench by 11pm on the night before the attack, 14 September. Zero hour was 6-30am the next morning, so any soldier who could manage to sleep would have to do so in full kit, in the trench. Every man was to carry 2 Mills bombs as well as 3 days rations and full water bottles. In addition, fifty men from each wave were to carry 2 red flares. These were to be lit in the front line at intervals of 20 yards, on gaining each objective;

"as soon as the contact aeroplane appears or calls for flares on the KLAXON horn, and again at 2pm and 5pm on 15th and at 7am on 16th September. Vigilant mirrors are to be attached to the backs of a proportion of the men".
Each Battalion was to be provided with two pigeons to help with communication.

The artillery provided a 'creeping barrage' just in front of the first attacking troops. As the men moved forward so the barrage lifted and was successful in preventing the enemy from attacking them. Large numbers of German dead were found in the trenches taken, killed by artillery.

Ten tanks were to co-operate in the attack, preceding the infantry. They were to clear the way for the infantry, who were to follow behind "unless the Tanks break down".

From the report of the CO of the 32 RF, Lt Colonel R.E. Key:
TANKS. Apparently the Tanks were considerably impeded by the unsuitable nature of the ground. In spite of natural difficulties, however, they appear to have done very good work, one in FLERS Village and another near GUEUDECOURT causing heavy casualties.
Captain H.A. Robinson, of this unit, on his way to the Field Dressing Station stated that he saw a tank near GUEUDECOURT put a field gun out of Action before it was subsequently put out of action by another gun of the same Battery.
In one case the smoke from a tank's exhaust caused considerable confusion amongst a party of the enemy whom it came upon rather suddenly. It is stated that they imagined the smoke to be a new form of gas and endeavoured to adjust their gas helmets before hurriedly retiring.
The CO further reported that the greater majority of the Battalion's casualties on the 15th were caused by enemy artillery. Eighty seven men from the 32 RF were killed in action including Alfred who is buried in Delville Wood Cemetery, Longueval.

Alfred's medal card shows that he was awarded the British war medal and the Victory medal.

The St Martin's Church Roll of Honour has the following "ALFRED STANLEY HARKNETT, was killed in action on the 15th September 1916, and was buried in Delville Wood Cemetery"

EP EB SM

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HARKNETT Arthur Sidney, Private. 44326

2nd Bn, Essex Regt.
Died of wounds 7 August 1918, aged 19

Arthur's headstone in the Pernes British Cemetery
Arthur's headstone in the Pernes British Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

Arthur Sidney Harknett, the younger brother of Alfred Stanley Harknett, was born in 1899 in Harmondsworth, Middlesex (GRO reference: Mar 1899 Staines 3a 21). See the entry for his brother Alfred Stanley for family details.

Arthur's Regular Attendance MedalArthur's Regular Attendance Medal
The front and back of Arthur's Regular Attendance Medal
Images courtesy of Bill Owen © 2015

Arthur attested in Epsom on 8 January 1917 into the 22 Training Battalion. He was 18 years old, 5 feet 7 inches tall, weighed 116lbs, and had a chest measurement of 34 inches with an expansion of 2 inches. His medical grade was A4. Like his brother Alfred he worked as a gardener and also lived at 41, Church Road, Epsom.

After the 22 Training Battalion Arthur transferred to the Suffolk Regiment as Private 51272, and then finally to the 2nd Battalion Essex Regiment. During 1918 many battalions suffered heavy casualties and were disbanded, the survivors being transferred to other battalions.

The 2nd Essex were in 128 Brigade 4 Division, and at the time of Arthur's death were fighting near the La Bassée Canal, two or three miles north west of Bethune. After the Great German advances that commenced on 21 March 1918, the war was about to swing decisively in the Allies favour. Two days before Arthur died of wounds, the Battalion war diary noted that the enemy were reported to be withdrawing. Patrols were sent out to keep in touch with the enemy, and the line was pushed forward about 150 yards. There was heavy shelling around Les Harisoirs, and six 'Other Ranks' (OR) were sent to the Field Ambulance.

Next day the diary reported that our line had been established in enemy posts, and that patrols had found no enemy in Pacaut Wood. Other patrols had reached Le Cornet Malo, but five OR had been wounded.

On the day that Arthur died the Battalion had been ordered to advance at 8am, and by 9-30am their objectives had been reached without opposition. Although no enemy troops had been encountered hostile shelling continued throughout the day, and four OR were wounded.

In August 1918, three Casualty Clearing Stations, 6, 13 and 22 worked at Pernes, and interred most of the 1075 casualties buried there. Arthur died of wounds at Pernes on 7 August 1918 and was buried in the Pernes British Cemetery. Three other men from the Battalion also died that day.

Arthur's Grave photo requestArthur's Original Grave Marker
Arthur's Grave photo request and Original Grave Marker
Images courtesy of Bill Owen © 2015

Arthur was awarded the British War medal and the Victory Medal.

Arthur's Medal Card
Arthur's medal card.
Image courtesy of Ancestry.co.uk (Link opens in a new window)
Ancestry Logo

Arthur's Medals
Arthur's Bronze Plaque
Arthur's Medals and Bronze Plaque
Images courtesy of Bill Owen © 2015

CWGC records him as the son of Mr F.S Harknett of 41,Church Rd, Epsom Surrey.

The St Martin's Church Roll of Honour has the following "ARTHUR SIDNEY HARKNETT, was wounded and died in the Casualty Clearing Station at Pernes on the 7th August 1918".

EP EB SM

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HARLOW William Richard, Air Mechanic 2nd Class. 207447.

Royal Air Force
Died 14 November 1918 aged 22.

Air Mechanic 2nd Class Harlow's CWGC inscription
Air Mechanic 2nd Class Harlow's CWGC inscription
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert 2007

William Richard Harlow was born on 29 August 1896 (GRO reference Dec 1896 Birmingham 6d 1) to William and Emily Harlow (nee Sanders).

His 23-year-old father, a greengrocer from the parish of St. Martins in Birmingham, married 25-year-old Emily Sanders of 98, Woodchester Street, London, on 30 November 1895 in St. Mary Magdalene church Paddington, London. After their marriage, William's parents presumably moved back to Birmingham where Emily gave birth to William nine months later.

As William had the same first name as his father, it seems that he was known by his middle name of Richard, which was also his paternal grandfather's name.

When the 1901 census was taken William Richard and his father, who now working as a butler, were living with his 57 year old grandmother Harriett Harlow at 106, St. Donutts Road, Deptford. His mother Emily was not recorded there that night, and it is likely that she was working as a cook for the Garle family in Shorwell, Hampshire.

The Ewell Boys' School admissions register records that William was admitted to the school on 30 October 1906, using his second name, Richard. His parent or guardian was recorded as 'C/O Mrs Jones, West Street, Epsom'. He left the school on 27 July 1896, aged almost 14, and it was noted that he had 'No work'.

William's aunt, Rose Elizabeth Harlow, married Henry Edward Jones in 1907 in Leatherhead, Surrey. In 1911 William Richard's grandmother Harriett was living with her daughter Rose and 2 year old grandson Alfred Henry Jones at Lords Spring Wood, Godden Green, Sevenoaks, Kent. The whereabouts of William's parents in 1911 is unknown.

William, aged 14, was living with his cousin Ernest Charles Jones in Manor Cottage, West Street, Epsom when the 1911 census was taken. Ernest, a chauffeur, was married to Emily Maria and they had two children; George Albert (who had filled the census form out) was aged 15 and worked as a telegraph messenger for the post office and Frederick Earnest, aged 11. What the actual relationship between William and Ernest was has not been researched.

William's service record held at the National Archives shows that he enlisted on the 10 August 1915 into the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) for a duration of 4 & 4 years. His occupation was that of a 'Footman'. The person to be informed in the case of casualties was his mother Emily ay Nonsuch House, Ewell, Surrey. He was 5 feet 6 inches tall, his chest measured 34 inches (no mention is made of expansion), his hair was dark brown, complexion fresh, and he had no marks, wounds or scars.

His trade is shown as an Airship Rigger. When he joined the RNAS ON 10 August 1915 his rank was 'Air Mechanic II R.L.. On 15 December 1916 he was an 'Air Mechanic I R.L.. But when the RAF was formed on 1 April 1918 and he was transferred, his rank became 'Air Mechanic II'. He is shown as having died on 8 November 1918, but his CWGC headstone in St Mary's Churchyard shows 14 November 1918. His death was registered in York (GRO Reference: Dec 1918 York 9d 73). It is most likely that he died from influenza, one of many millions world wide to do so in 1918 - 1919.

Air Mechanic 2nd Class Harlow's gave at St Mary's Ewell
Air Mechanic 2nd Class Harlow's gave at St Mary's Ewell
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert 2007

As he had a grave in Ewell, and thus a place for his loved ones to centre their grief upon it is unusual that his name also appears on the memorials at St Mary's and Bourne Hall.

The CWGC states he was the 'Son of William and Emily Harlow, Vicarage Cottage, Ewell.

BH EW ES


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HARMAN William Abraham, Driver. 122883.

503rd Howitzer Battery Royal Field Artillery.
Died 5 December 1916, aged 39.

Sapper William Abraham HARMAN grave in St Mary's Churchyard
Sapper William Abraham HARMAN grave in St Mary's Churchyard
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert 2007

William Abraham Harman was born on 9 September 1877 in Rotherhithe (GRO reference: Dec 1877 St. Olave 1d 328), the son of Henry George Harman and his second wife Eliza. His 31 year old widowed father, a shipwright, had married spinster Eliza Caney on 15 July 1873 in St. Mary Magdalene church in Bermondsey after his first wife, Mary, had died in childbirth in 1872.

William's oldest brother Henry George was born on 24 April 1874 and brother George James on 15 February 1876. The family had moved to 9, Forsythe Street when William's sister Eliza Ann was born on 3 September 1879.

William's sister Emily Jane was born on 12 January 1881. The 1881 census records the family as still living at 9, Forsythe Street and that his father was still a shipwright. William and his sister Emily Jane were baptised later that year on 18 November 1881 in St. Mary's church in Rotherhithe. William's brother, Abraham Charles, was born in 1883 and Robert Matthew in 1885.

On 29 May 1887, William's youngest sibling, Melinda Eliza, was born. The next year William's father died, and when Melinda was baptised in St. Mary's church on 6 March 1890, the family was living at 193, Rotherhithe Street.

The family had moved when the 1891 census was taken and William and his siblings were living with their widowed mother in 14, Neptune Street, Rotherhithe, the home of his uncle Luke Caney and his family. His 38 year old mother was working as an assistant laundress while his 16 year old brother Henry and 15 year old brother George were working as labourers in a Lead Works. Sister Melinda was staying with her uncle William Smith in Greenwich.

By 1901 only brother Henry, who was working as a plumber's mate, and sister Melinda were living with their mother at 10, Suffolk Street, Rotherhithe. William was a boarder at 28, George Lane, Lewisham and was working as a 'Gate Porter'. Harman had been written on the census form as Harmans.

William was aged 26 when he married 29 year old Mary Ann Grace Keyte on 28 February 1903 in Christ Church, Rotherhithe. At the time of their marriage they were both living at 58, Union Road, Rotherhithe, and William was working as a 'Labour-master'.

Both William and his wife Mary were working in The Epileptic Colony, Epsom, on the night that the 1911 census was taken. William was a night attendant on the male ward and Mary was a night nurse on the female ward. It was noted that Mary had been married for 8 years but there was no note of any children being born to her.

The 1913 electoral roll shows them living at 21, Oakdale Road, West Ewell.

21 Oakdale Road
21 Oakdale Road in 2007
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert 2007

William attested on 17 November 1915 aged 38 years and 60 days, into the Royal Regiment of Artillery at Woolwich. His Army pension papers state that he was a male nurse living at 2, Plantation Cottages, Red Lion Lane, Woolwich. This seems at odds with the 21, Oakdale Road address so maybe William had moved jobs but Mary had stayed in West Ewell.

At the time he attested he was 5 feet 4½ inches tall, had a chest measurement of 36½ inches with an expansion of 2 inches. His hair was auburn, and his eyes grey. He had a scar on the inside of his right thigh, and tattoos on his right arm and left forearm.

William's military character was judged as good, steady and sober.

William's Army pension papers state that he suffered with 'Chronic Nephritis' (inflammation of the kidneys), Albuminuria (presence of albumin in the urine) and Albuminuric retinitis (inflammation of the retina). His medical problems were not a result of military service but were aggravated by it. He was discharged at Forest Row, East Sussex, because he was 'No longer physically fit' on 25 November 1916, but he did not live long to draw his pension.

William died on 5 December 1916 and is buried in St Mary's Churchyard Ewell, Old Ground 316A. His gravestone reads 'Who entered into rest Dec 5 1916 aged 39 years'. In addition to being buried in St. Mary's churchyard he is also commemorated on St. Mary's memorial, All Saint's memorial and the Dipping Well memorial, although on the Dipping Well memorial he is mistakenly shown as a Sapper in Royal Engineers.

William's short Army career was served entirely in the UK and he was not awarded any medals.

CWGC entry states he was the:
Husband of Grace Harman, of David Lewis Colony, Alderley Edge, Cheshire.
The David Lewis Colony was a centre for people with epilepsy and it is likely that William's widow Mary, a nurse, was working there. She did not remarry and died on 9 September 1945 in Winchcombe, Gloucestershire.

BH EW AS BSM

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HARPER Albert Hamilton, Private. 14138.

3rd (King's Own) Hussars.
Killed in Action 27 November 1917, aged 22

Part of the Cambrai Memorial to the missing
Part of the Cambrai Memorial to the missing
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008.

Albert Hamilton Harper was born in Battersea in 1895 (GRO reference: Sept 1895 Wandsworth 1d 566) in the registration district of Wandsworth. He was the youngest son of James Henry and Laura Jane Harper (nee Shoebridge), who had married in late 1887 in the Croydon registration district.

In the 1891 census, before Albert was born, the Harper family lived in 18 Garnet Road, Thornton Heath, Surrey. Albert's father James, aged 26, born in Battersea, was working as a railway signalman. His mother Laura, aged 21, was at home caring for their two children, James Frederick aged 2, who was born in Hackbridge as was his mother, and 8-month-old Alice who was born in Thornton Heath. They had two lodgers staying with them, both railway workers.

The rear of Hylands in 1939
The rear of Hylands in 1939
Image courtesy of Surrey Libraries and is held in the
Epsom & Ewell Local And Family History Centre Collection

Albert's father James had a career change sometime during the next ten years and appears as a cook in the 1901 census living with his family in 'Hylands' Dorking Road, Epsom, Surrey. The family had increased by one and now James Frederick aged 13 and Alice aged 10 had a younger sibling Albert Hamilton Harper, aged 5.

Albert's mother was not at the family home 22, Lower Court Road, Epsom, when the 1911 census was taken. His father filled the form in stating that he and his wife of 23 years had had three children, all still living, and that he was now employed as a gate porter for the London County Asylum while Albert worked as an errand boy for a dentist. His sister Alice was not working at the time, and brother James was away.

In May 1908 Albert's older brother James, aged 19 years 9 months, had given up his job as a gardener and attested in Hounslow, joining as Private 8901 in the Royal Berkshire Regiment. James served 6 years 292 days, mostly in India, before being discharged on 12 March.1915 as being 'permanently no longer fit for home or active service', the cause being 'Hellux Valgus'. This complaint is more commonly called bunions, a common but painful foot condition. On his medical report it was decided that he had suffered from these on both feet before joining up, cause being of 'wearing too small boots'. He was awarded the British War medal.

From James military record, the family's home address was given as 65 Lower Court Road Epsom, with James Henry and Laura Harper given as his parents and his brother Albert mentioned as still living at home. Albert was working as a gardener.

Albert Hamilton Harper, aged 19 years and 3 months, attested in Kingston on 11 August 1914 into the Hussars. He was 5 feet 7¼ inches tall, weighed 122lbs and had a chest measurement of 34 inches with an expansion of 2½ inches. His complexion was sallow, eyes dark blue, hair dark brown, and he had a scar on an arm. He worked as a gardener.

The 3rd Hussars had been deployed in August 1914 in Shorncliffe, as part of 4th Cavalry Brigade in Cavalry Division. The Division was one of the first to move to France having landed at Rouen on 17 August 1914. The 4th Cavalry Brigade transferred to the 2nd Cavalry Division in October 1914. However, as Albert was awarded only the British War medal and the Victory medal he would not have joined them in France until 1916 at the earliest.

In November and December 1917 the 3rd Hussars fought in the Battle of Cambrai in France, but as infantry on foot not as cavalry on horseback. The attack began early on the morning of 20 November 1917, when large numbers of tanks were used to break through the German wire, with the infantry following under the cover of smoke barrages. This was instead of the usual method of assault, with no preliminary artillery bombardment. Two days later a halt was called for rest and reorganisation, which allowed the Germans to reinforce. From 23 to 28 November, the fighting was concentrated almost entirely around Bourlon Wood and by 29 November, it was clear that the Germans were ready for a major counter attack. During the fierce fighting of the next five days, much of the ground gained in the initial days of the attack was lost.

The Cambrai Memorial to the missing
The Cambrai Memorial to the missing
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008.

Nine men from the 3rd Hussars were killed in action on 27 November 1917, including Albert, who is commemorated on panel 1 of the Cambrai Memorial to the missing. The memorial bears the names of over 7,000 servicemen of the United Kingdom and South Africa who died in the Battle of Cambrai in November and December 1917 and whose graves are not known.

EP SB

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HARRIS E



Despite checking all known sources of information, it has proved impossible to establish why the name 'HARRIS E.' should appear on the Epsom War Memorial in Ashley Road, and on the St. Barnabas Roll of Honour.

If you can shed any light on why the name has been include we would be delighted to hear from you via our Webmaster.

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HARRIS Walter Stuart, Private. 67823.

233rd Company, Machine Gun Corps. (Infantry).
Killed in Action 24 September 1917, aged 19.

Walter's inscription on the Tyne Cot Memorial
Walter's inscription on the Tyne Cot Memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

Walter Stuart Harris was born on 23 December 1897 (GRO reference: Mar 1898 Pancras 1b 132) to Walter John and Louisa Harris (nee Cook). His parents had married in Holy Trinity Church in Haverstock Hill, Camden, on 22 March 1897.

When the 1901 census was taken they were living in Woodford, Essex. Walter's father was a 30 year old railway clerk. His mother Louisa was 26, and he had a two year old sister Amelia Amy. Louisa's 71 year old mother Mary Cook was living with them, as was 16 year old boarder Roy Coleman, an oilman presumably also on the railways.

Walter was aged nine when he was baptised, in the same church his parents had married in. on 19 July 1907.
265, Hook Road, Epsom
265 Hook Road, Epsom
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

By the 1911 census the family were living at 265 Hook Road, Epsom, and Walter's father was working as a stoker in the Urban District Council's electricity works. Another five siblings had been born Stanley Aubrey William, twins Harold and Leonard, Louisa and Norman. Walter's mother stated that she had given birth to seven children, all of whom were still alive. Later in 1911 another sibling, Ivy was born.

Walter, whose religion was Church of England, was a window cleaner before attesting at Kingston on Thames on 7 February 1916. He was aged 18 years 1 month, 5 feet 4½ inches tall, weighed 119lbs and had a chest measurement of 33½ inches with a 2 inch expansion. His vision was good, 6/6 for both eyes, and his physical development was fair. His place of birth was recorded as being Kentish Town, and he named his father as his next of kin, Walter John Harris of 265 Hook Road, Epsom.

On 8 February 1916 he was allocated to 'Army Reserve'. His service record then shows that on 13 May 1916 he was 'Relegated to Reserve'.

He was then 'mobilized' on 30 August 1916, and the next day he joined 10th Battalion East Surrey Regiment at Dover. The 10th East Surreys was a reserve and training battalion which, on 1 September 1916, became the 30th Training Reserve Battalion. Walter's original service number was then 24554.

Walter made his will out on 11 October 1916, leaving all his worldly goods to his mother, Louie" Harris 'for her sole and separate use'. At the top of the form it is stated that he was No. 20356, 2/5 Lincolnshire Regiment, but he was not with the Lincolns very long, for on 14 November 1916 he was transferred to the MGC, and embarked for France.

On 14 February 1917 his record was stamped with 'M.G.C. Service Battn. Transferred'. Then 'Proceeded to BEF with No. 233 Coy 11th July 1917'. On 18 July 1917 the 233 MGC joined the 3rd Division.

The following is an extract from the War diary of the 233 Coy MGC:
23 September 1917. Transport left camp at 12 noon. Part of the transport went to details camp at H 7 A 21 BRANDHOEK remaining fighting and SAA limbers moved up to just this side of FREZENBERG RIDGE and dumped all guns and equipment. The Coy left at 7 p.m. in Motor busses and arrived at dump about 10.45 p.m. Relief started and sections moved up with pack mules. Very hard going as the back was swept with shell fire.

24 September 1917. Company got into position at about 3.30 a.m. having managed extremely well. Casualties were 2nd Lt. E.A. KNIGHT and 2nd Lt. R.C. JACKSON killed. Other casualties were 3 O.R. killed and 7 O.R. wounded. Nos 1.2 and 4 Sections were at POTSDAM and VAMPIR No3 Section in reserve behind FREZENBERG RIDGE.
So it seems likely that Walter was killed in action by shellfire whilst taking up position in the front line. Walter is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Passchendaele, Belgium. He was aged only 19, having been in the army for 19 months.

A letter was sent to his father Walter John Harris at 265 Hook Road, Epsom requesting a full list of all Walter's surviving family members, with their ages, so that a memorial letter and a scroll could be sent, by HRH King George V, to them.

Walter's father returned the form listing his mother Louisa and his siblings Amelia 20, Stanley 18, Harold 17, Leonard 17, Louisa 15, Norman 11 and Ivy 7. Having married on 26 December 1918, Amelia's surname was now Durham and she was 'on passage to Australia' with her husband Joseph Henry.

Walter was awarded the British War medal and Victory medal, his father acknowledging their receipt on 13 May 1922.

EP

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HARRISON Charles Hibbert, Lieutenant.

'A' Battery, 92nd Howitzer Brigade, Royal Field Artillery (RFA).
Killed in Action 31 July 1917, aged 20.

Charles's Headstone in Talana Farm Cemetery, Belgium
Charles's Headstone in Talana Farm Cemetery, Belgium
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013

Charles Hibbert Harrison was born on 12 May 1897 in the Matatiele district of South Africa (SA) to Harry Neden and Jane Wilson Harrison (nee Wanklyn). His parents married during the September quarter of 1895 in the registration district of Kensington. Charles' birth certificate records his father as an agricultural and stock farmer.

Charles Hibbert Harrison And His Siblings
Name Born - Died Notes
Helen Whitmore Born: 11 June 1896 South Africa
Died: 1974 Tonbridge, Kent
Married Lionel A Clemens
1919 Holborn
Charles Hibbert Born: 12 May 1897 South Africa
Killed in Action 31 July 1917. France
 
Catherine Whitmore Born: 18 March 1903 Barnstable, Devon
Died: 10 December 1984 Marlborough, Wiltshire
Married Bertram Ede
1934 Westminster
James Harry Born: 1906 Barnstable, Devon
Died: 22 Apr 1939 Lambeth
Married Dorothy Gordon
1938 Finsbury

I have been unable to find the family in the 1901 census, and as Charles was born in 1897 in SA, presumably the family moved there sometime between 1895 and 1897. The family had returned to the UK by 1903.

At the time of the 1911 census, Charles was a 13 year old pupil at Upland House School (a preparatory school for boys aged between 8 and14). We do not know when he first attended but we do know that he studied there in 1908 and left in 1911 to attend Clifton College. His parents and younger siblings were living at this time in The Old Rectory, Stoke Road, Guildford. Charles' father filled out the 1911 census form stating that he and his wife had been married for 15 years, had had 4 children, all still living, earned his living as a Lloyds Underwriter, and that he employed a nurse, parlour maid, housemaid, cook and a tweeny maid.

He distinguished himself in a variety of sports at both schools. He won his cap at rugby and played in the 2nd XI cricket team at Clifton.

On 22 September 1914 Charles underwent a medical examination at the Civil Service Commission, Burlington Gardens, London to ascertain his fitness for a commission in the Army. Aged 17, he was 5 feet 11¼ inches tall, weighed 155lbs and had a chest measurement of 34½ inches expanding to 38 inches. His hearing, teeth, vision and colour vision were all good, and he was living at The Old Rectory, Stoke, Guildford.

He then served with the rank of Sapper in the Officer Training Corps until appointed 2Lt. in 'A' Battery, 92nd Brigade RFA on 22 April 1915. He went to France on 21 July 1915 and was slightly wounded in action on 18 July 1916 but remained on duty. Leave to the UK was granted from 28 November until 8 December 1916.

The London Gazette dated 17 September 1917 announced that 2Lt. C.H. Harrison RFA was to be promoted to Lieutenant, but next to his name states, 'Since Killed in action'. Thus he was promoted lieutenant, posthumously.

The Third Battle of Ypres (also known as the Battle of Passchendaele) commenced on 31 July 1917. Charles' Howitzer battery was stationed near the village of Boesinghe. At the start of the attack the artillery barrage moved forward at the rate of 100 yards every four minutes, and then remained stationary 200 yards beyond each objective. Each Artillery Battery had two 'Forward Observation Officers' (FOO), who had to keep up with the advancing infantry. One was responsible for a telephone line that was run out behind the advance, whilst the other FOO was responsible for gathering information about the attack. Information would be telephoned back to the gunners to let them know if their fire is accurate or if they needed to adjust their aim.

The following is an extract from the 20th (Light) Division History:
In the 92nd Brigade Lieut. Pickard, D/92, and 2nd Lieut. Harrison, A/92, acted as F.O.O.'s, and advanced with the infantry. 2nd Lieut. Harrison and many of his party were killed during the action.
De Ruvigny's Roll of Honour printed the following quotes:
From his Commanding Officer:
He was a very fine officer, and the best and most staunch of friends. His men were very attached to him, and all are deeply grieved at his death.
From another officer:
He was absolutely fearless and a splendid officer, and he was killed having volunteered to go as Observation Officer with the infantry, and was hit on his return whilst mending his wires, which had been cut by shellfire.
Charles is buried in grave I. A. 7. Talana Farm Cemetery, Belgium.

Talana Farm Cemetery, Belgium
Talana Farm Cemetery, Belgium
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013

He was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

Charles' father of 2, Park Crescent, Paignton, South Devon, was his next of kin and as Charles died intestate and unmarried, his father took out letters of administration. The gross value of his estate was £497-12s-5d. However, a paper amongst Charles' service record shows that he left a mess bill of 25 Francs, and that a watch loaned to him by 2Lt JC Boyd, subsequently lost and valued at £1-10s-0d, was to be claimed against his estate.

Charles' father died 11 May 1945. His effects valued at £70,189-18s-1d were left to Charles' sister Helen Whitmore Clemens, a widow, and Reginald Francis Popham, a stockbroker.

Charles' mother died 3 May 1946. Her effects valued at £1,043-18s-3d were left to Charles' sisters Helen Whitmore Clemens, a widow, and Catherine Whitmore Ede, a married woman.

UHS

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HARRISON Thomas, Private. 3325/A.

60th Battalion Australian Infantry.
Died 28 July 1916, aged 22.

Thomas Harrison
Thomas Harrison
Image courtesy of the Australian War Memorial

Thomas Harrison was born in 1894 in Granville, New South Wales, Australia. His parents were Thomas and Sophia Jessie Harrison, nee Poulter, who had married in 1891 in the Kiama, New South Wales registration district. His father was recorded in the 1900 Sands Street Directory as a carriage builder living in Alfred Street, Granville, .

Thomas had one older sister, Una Clista, who was born in 1892 and four younger siblings, Gwyndeline Amanda born 1896, William born 1898, Edward born 1903 and Iris Ulonga born 1907.

Thomas was aged 21 years 10 months and still unmarried when he enlisted on 6 September 1915 in Sydney into the Australian Imperial Force. Thomas stated he had been a School Cadet for two years after which he had been working as a Boilermaker's assistant. He gave his religion as Roman Catholic and his father as his next-of-kin. Earlier, at his medical on 24 August in Town Hall, he was described as being 5 feet 7 inches tall weighing 127 lb and had a chest measurement of 32 inches with a 2 inch expansion. He had a fresh complexion with blue coloured eyes and dark brown hair. It was also noted he had a tattoo on his left forearm.

Thomas was first placed in D Company, 3rd Battalion after which, on 14 September 1915, he was transferred to 11th Reinforcements, 4th Battalion. A month later, on 13 October, Thomas and his battalion embarked from Sydney on board HMAT Port Lincoln, destination Egypt. After arriving in Cairo, Thomas was transferred again on 13 February 1916 into the 53rd Battalion and on 16 February 1916 was taken on strength at Tel-el-Kebir. On 9 April 1916, in Ismailia, his regimental number was amended to 3325/A.

At Ferry Post on 18 May 1916, Thomas was transferred into the 60th Battalion and a month later, on 19 June, the battalion embarked from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force. The journey took ten days before they landed at Marseilles, France on 29 June 1916. The 60th Battalion was in the 15th Brigade, 5th Division. Their first encounter with the enemy was in the disastrous Battle of Fromelles, 19 - 20 July, in which the 5th division suffered over 5,500 casualties: 'The worst 24 hours in Australian history'. See The Australian war Memorial and VC Corner Australian Cemetery and Memorial - Fromelles, France.

Twenty days after landing in France, on 19 July 1916, Thomas was seriously wounded. He was transferred to 13th General Hospital in Boulogne on 22 July 1916 and from there was sent to England on H.S. St. Denis. Upon arrival, on 23 July 1916, at the County of London War Hospital in Epsom, Surrey, Thomas' wounds were officially recorded as GSW Thigh (left), Compound Fracture Femur, GSW Right Arm, GSW Chest Wall (Gas Infection). The doctor also noted that Thomas' wounds were gangrenous and badly infected. It was in his opinion that it was only Thomas' pluck that had kept him alive in the face of such an extensive virulent infection. A telegram was sent to Thomas' family on 25 July stating he was dangerously ill.

Thomas death at 5.45pm, on 28 July 1916, was the result of toxaemia caused by his wounds; his body was later taken for burial in grave K82 in Epsom Cemetery on 2 August 1916.

Thomas' inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Thomas' inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2016

On 12 August the following appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, NSW.
ROLL OF HONOUR HARRISON - Private Thomas Harrison, aged 22 years, died Epsom, July 29, 1916, previously reported dangerously ill and gunshot wounds. Dearly loved eldest son of Mr and Mrs Thomas Harrison, Erskineville, and brother Mrs James Kelly [Una Clista], Liverpool, Mrs Henry Scott [Gwyndeline Amanda], Marrickville, William and Edward and Iris Ulonga Harrison. He gave his life gloriously, and died a hero.

Four months after his death, Thomas effects, consisting of an Identity Disc, Rosary, Wallet, Postcards, Photos, Letters, Small Bag, Mirror (broken), Knife, Diary, 2 Devotional Books and a Note Book, were returned on 20 December 1916 via "Ajana" to his father at 2, Adva (sic) Villas, Erskineville Road, Erskineville, Sydney, New South Wales.

A photograph of Thomas' grave in Epsom Cemetery was transmitted to his father on 15 March 1918.

On 16 November 1921, Thomas' father received his son's Memorial Scroll and on 18 January 1922 his Memorial Plaque and the King's message that was sent to all the next-of-kin of soldiers who had died during the war. Thomas was also awarded the 1914-15 Star medal, British War medal and Victory medal.

On 6 May 1925 the letter below was sent to Thomas' father regarding the intention of the unveiling and dedication of the Great War Cross erected by the Imperial War Graves Commission in Epsom Cemetery on Sunday 17 May 1925.

Great War Cross unveiling letter

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HARROWER Annie, Principle Sister.

Horton War Hospital.
Died 6 March 1916, aged 34.

Annie's unmarked grave in Epsom Cemetery
Annie's unmarked grave in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013

Local newspapers of the time, and the 'Nursing Times', reported that Annie had started her career with two years fever training in Stratford upon Avon before going for three years to the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh, Scotland. She then travelled south again to work in Queen Mary's Hospital in Carshalton, Surrey as their Superintending Nurse. Annie then transferred to work in the Horton (County of London) War Hospital when it first opened as its Principal Nurse. (See Horton War Memorial)

They also reported that her sister and brother-in-law, Mr. & Mrs. J. MacDonald, lived in Wallington, Surrey. Using this last piece of information, I believe that Annie Harrower was a member of the following family.

In 1911 there was a Mary and John MacDonald living at 33, Beddington Gardens, Upper Wallington, Surrey. Mary had been born in 1873 in Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland. They had been married for 20 years and had two children. Records found on the Scotland's People website showed that the couple had married in 1891 in the St. George district of Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland.

Tracing Mary Harrower back, using Mary MacDonald's birth date and place of birth, I found that her parents were Robert and Mary Harrower and she did have a sister named Annie born in 1881, also in Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland.

On 7 June 1867, their father Robert Harrower had married their mother Mary Clark in Edinburgh, Scotland. A tailor and clothier by trade, Robert and Mary went on to have at least six children: James in 1870, Mary in 1873, Robert in 1880, Annie in 1881 and twins Isabella and Margaret on 7 November 1882.

The Scottish birth entry for Annie shows that she was born on 27 June 1881 at Salisbury Place, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Scottish 1891 census shows the Harrower family as living at 3, Greenbank Place, Edinburgh where her father was still working as a tailor. Living at home that night were Annie and her parents, brother Robert and twin sisters Maggie (Margaret) and Isa (Isabella).

By 1901, aged 19, Annie was working as a baker's shop assistant. She and her parents and twin sisters were living at 9, Comiston Gardens, Edinburgh. Staying with them was her maternal uncle, Archibald Clerk.

Annie's career then followed more or less as the newspaper recorded; by 1911 she had qualified as a nurse and was the first nurse to be listed on the Scottish census under the matron and assistant matron of a hospital in Kirkintilloch, Dunbarton, Scotland.

After a short unknown illness, having been unconscious since the previous Friday, Annie died at midday on Monday 6 March 1916. Three days later, in the hospital chapel, Reverend J. M. Fergusson presided over her funeral service before Annie, who was a Presbyterian, was buried in grave F321 in Epsom Cemetery. The many elaborate floral tributes from her colleagues and patients showed how highly they thought of her.

The following is from the book 'Story of Horton War Hospital Epsom' by Lieutenant Colonel J.R. Lord, published in 1920:
Deaths of Sister Harrower and Nurse Bell.
Considerable distress was caused to both patients and staff by the death of Principal sister A Harrower on 6 Mar 1916 (Plot F321) and of probationer nurse A M Bell (Plot 464) on 14 April 1916. They were both buried in Epsom Cemetery with many expressions of grief and regret. Fortunately we were spared more of these sorrowful experiences until the armistice, Sister Mary FitzHenry succeeded as Senior Principal Sister while on 14 April 1916 it became necessary to appoint Sister M L Baines to be Junior Principal Sister.
Annie's name appears on the Role of Honour 1914-1919 memorial, which is inside Horton Chapel, Horton Lane, Epsom, Surrey.

Newspaper Report of Annie's Death - click image to enlarge
Newspaper Report of Annie's Death - click image to enlarge.

HWH

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HART Frederick Alfred, Corporal. 86270.

17th Battalion Machine Gun Corps.
Killed in Action 5 April 1918, aged 25.

Frederick's headstone in the Bouzincourt Communal Cemetery Extension
Frederick's headstone in the Bouzincourt Communal Cemetery Extension
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

Frederick Alfred Hart was born on 5 December 1892 in Shamley Green (GRO reference: Mar 1893 Hambledon 2a 159) to George and Emily Hart (nee Mitchell), who had married on 9 May 1875 in St. John the Baptist Church, Wonersh, Surrey. When Frederick was baptised on 2 March 1893 in Christ Church, Shamley Green, his father was working as a labourer. Note: The initials on the Ashley Road memorial are FE not FA, but I believe to be a mistake as no FE Hart has been found in any records with a connection to Epsom.

In the 1881 census before Frederick was born, the family were living at 3, Waggon Yard, Upper Hale, Farnham, Surrey. There were two sons William aged 3 and James aged 1. Frederick's father George was as 31 year old bricklayer. His mother Emily was aged 25.

Ten years on in the 1891 census the increased family had moved to Shamley Green, Wonersh, Surrey. William aged 13 and James aged 11 now had five more siblings Ann aged 9, Edward aged 7, Arthur aged 5, Nellie aged 3 and Edith aged 2.

By 1901 when the census was taken the family, with the exception of William and Nellie, were living at Primrose Cottage, 86, Hook Road, Epsom, Surrey. Frederick's father George was still working as a bricklayer as was his brother James Henry, now aged 21. Ernest Edward aged 17 and Arthur were working as bricklayers labourers. Sister Ann Elizabeth aged 19 was noted as being a domestic housemaid, while Edith Amy aged 12 and the youngest sibling Frederick Alfred aged 8 were too young to have been working.

In the 1911 census the family was living at 153, Hook Road, Epsom. Frederick's father was described as a 61 year old unemployed bricklayer. His mother recorded that she had been married for 35 years and that one of her nine children had died. Frederick's brother Arthur was a bricklayer, his sister Edith was not employed and Frederick himself was a bricklayer's labourer. Boarding with the family was 42 year old Henry James Godfrey, a gardener working for the L.C.C. Asylum Department.

Frederick's army records survived the enemy bombing of 1940 but are fire and water damaged, and are therefore difficult to read. His completed 'Army Form E. 514' is for the 'TERRITORIAL FORCE' and for '1 year's Service in the United Kingdom'. The form also tells us that he had previously served in the 5th Battalion East Surrey Regiment, which came into being when the Territorial Force was instituted in 1908.

His Territorial attestation form dated 7 November 1914 shows he was No. 59, and the Corps that he joined was the 'National Reserve, Epsom Company 5 Batt. Reserve, East Surrey Regt.' On the form there is also reference to '30657' and 'No 9 Railway Coy' most likely written on a later date. It seems therefore that having previously served in the Territorials, and declining to serve overseas, he was now to wait on the reserve. The form also tells us he lived at 153, Hook Road, Epsom.

On the same day (7 November 1914) he was medically examined and the Medical Officer stated "I consider him fit for service as a local guard in the Territorial Force". He thus became No 20059 in the 5th East Surrey Reserve. His declared age was 22 years, and he worked as a whitesmith. He was 5 feet 8½ inches tall, weighed 132lbs, had three vaccination marks, had a chest measurement of 35 inches with an expansion of 2½ inches and had perfect vision, 6/6 with both eyes. His 'Medical History' form also shows that he was No 25807 in 43 Protection Company Royal Defence Corps (RDC), served in the Hampshire Regiment and was finally No 86270 in the Machine Gun Corps (MGC).

Frederick Alfred Hart married Florence May Barber in St Barnabas church, Temple Road, Epsom on 10 April 1915. Florence was the daughter of butler William Walton Barber and lived at Downside, Epsom. Frederick's address at this time was recorded as The Hut, Frimley. There were no children.

Records show that Frederick was admitted to Connaught Hospital between 6 June 1915 and 13 July 1915 (38 days) with appendicitis.

On 29 April 1916 Frederick was transferred from the 5th East Surrey reserve, to 41 RDC, then on 13 May to the 43 RDC. It seems that Frederick then decided to offer himself for overseas service, and on 16 June 1916 duly asked permission to transfer from 43 RDC based at Cambridge, to the Hampshire Regiment, probably with the number 30657.

On 15 February 1917 Frederick transferred to 236 MGC, and six months later, on 26 April 1917, he was promoted A/Cpl.

On 13 July 1917 Frederick embarked from Southampton with 236 Company MGC, arriving at Le Havre on 14 July, and was promoted Corporal the same day. Between 7 December 1917 and 6 January 1918 he attended a Machine Gun course at Camiers, France, where the MGC had a large base.

His faded records further show that he was admitted to hospital on 12 February 1918 for reason unknown, and rejoined his company on 17 February 1918. He was then fortunate enough to be granted leave to the UK between 21 February and 7 March 1918.

On 24 February 1918 the 236 MGC moved into 17 MGC. During 1918 losses were so severe that many units were disbanded and the remnants posted to other units. This must have happened to Frederick. Records show that he was killed in action 5 April 1918. This was the last day of the huge German attack named 'The Kaiserschlact' or Operation Michael, their last desperate bid to win the war before the Americans arrived in force.

In May 1919 a letter from the War Office was sent to Frederick's father George Hart requesting the names and addresses of his living relatives plus and ages of Frederick's siblings be entered on the adjoining form. This was so a plaque and scroll could be sent to them from HRH King George V in recognition of their family member's sacrifice for King and country.

The returning form, dated 27 May 1919, was duly sent back with the following information:
Widow Florence May Hart, 12 St Andrews Road Surbiton Surrey.
Father George Hart, 153 Hook Road Epsom Surrey
Mother Emily Hart, 153 Hook Road Epsom Surrey
Brothers William Hart, aged 42, 8 Miles Road Epsom
  James Hart, aged 40, Pleasant Road Little Bookham
  Edward Hart, aged 35, 84 Lower Court Road Epsom
  Arthur Hart, aged 33, 3 Miles Road Epsom
Sisters Ann Hart, aged 37, 30 North Street Farncombe
  Nellie Hart, aged 32, 6 Pound Lane Epsom
  Edith Hart, aged 30, 153 Hook Road Epsom
All of Frederick's possessions were to be returned to his widow Florence and the War Pension office informed her that she was entitled to a war widow's pension of 15/- per week (75p in decimal currency) from 4 November 1918.

Frederick served for 3 years and 150 days. Of this, 2 years and 248 days were served on the home front and 1 year 267 days with the BEF, for which he was awarded the British War and Victory medals.

Forty five men from the MGC lost their lives on 5 April 1918 on the Western Front including Frederick who is buried in Bouzincourt Communal Cemetery Extension.

Frederick is mentioned on the Shamley Green page of the website 'They Gave Their Today', as one of those born in Shamley Green but not mentioned on the Shamley Green memorial.

Frederick's mother died in 1920 at 153, Hook Road, Epsom and was buried in Epsom Cemetery on 27 February in grave D365. His widow Florence married butler Charles Guy in St. Andrew's church, Surbiton on 17 September 1921. His father died in 1924 at Middle House, Dorking Road, Epsom and was buried with his late wife on 7 March.

EP SB

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HARVEY Clement, Sapper. 77921.

Royal Engineers. 'A' Signals Depot (Bedford).
Died of Wounds 4 June 1918, aged 48.

Clement's headstone in Epsom Cemetery
Clements grave
Clement's headstone and grave in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Clement Harvey Harvey was born in the registration district of Kingston in 1870 (GRO reference: Sep 1870 Kingston 2a 301), the son of Alfred Clement Thomas and Esther Lydia Harvey (nee Barnes). His father was aged 20 when he married 26 year old Esther on 19 September 1870 in St. George the Martyr church in Queen Square, Camden. Clement was baptised on 2 October 1870 in St. Mary's church in Hampton.

In the 1871 census Alfred aged 21, Esther aged 26 and 7-month-old Clement were living with Alfred's mother Jane (previous censuses have her as Ann), and brother James, who helped run their mother's beer house in Hampton. Alfred 's occupation was noted as 'Labourer' and his wife Esther was 'Assistant', presumably in the beer house. Also living there was Sarah Ann Barnes, aged 16, from Ticehurst Sussex, who was Esther's sister, and Sarah Weston with her daughter Mary. Both Sarah's were noted as Jane's nieces, Mary being her great niece.

Clements's siblings Alice Maud were born in 1873, and Frank Alfred in 1876.

Clement's mother Esther died aged 34 in 1877 and was buried on 18 September in St. Mary's church, Teddington. After her death, his father Alfred remarried in on 17 March 1879 in St Peter's church, Norbiton to Sarah Ann Barnes. This was Esther's sister who appeared in the previous census as living with the family.

In the 1881 census the family was living at 3 Ivy Cottage, Railway Road, Teddington. Alfred's 30 year old father was a dairyman and his step mother Sarah was aged 25. Ten year old Clement's siblings Alice Maud and Frank Alfred were aged 7 and 6 respectively and his half sister Ada M was aged 1.

Clement was not found to be living at home with his family on the night of the 1891 census but boarding with the Bundy family at 3 Rea Lodge, Mortlake Surrey. He was aged 20, single and working as a cowman. His birthplace was noted as Molesley, Middlesex.

His father and stepmother/aunt, Alfred and Sarah, were living in the same cottage where they still ran a dairy with Alice aged 17, Frank aged 14 and Ada aged 11. The family business prospered and by the time the 1901 census was taken the family were, with the exception of Alice, owners of a cowherd and dairy. They were also running a beer house at the same address, 3 Ivy Cottage Railway Road, Teddington.

Clement was aged 24 years old when he married 20 year old spinster Jane Hill in St. Martin of Tours church, Epsom, Surrey on 3 June 1895. The couple both gave their address at that time as 51 Victoria Place, Epsom.

In the census of 1901 Clement and Jane were living with their three daughters, who had all been born in Epsom Surrey, at 6 Lintons Lane, Epsom, Surrey. Clement was now aged 30 and his place of birth had been noted as Hampton Court, Middlesex. Jane's birthplace was noted as Hockley, Warwickshire. Jane, aged 26, was at home caring for Ada Maude aged 5, Esther Jane aged 2 and 4-month-old Beatrice May plus three boarders, Harry Stevens a painter, Samuel Bonner a baker and Amos Gillett a grave digger. Clement was working as a Carman for the District Council. Railway companies often employed a Carman as well, for local deliveries and the collections of goods and parcels, as like a modern day van driver. Also sometimes, someone who drove horse-drawn trams was called a Carman.

Clement and Jane's daughters Rose and Lily were born in 1903 and 1905 respectively. Their son Clement, born at 4 Victoria Place in 1907, died 5 hours after his birth and was buried on 18 June 1907 in grave B5 in Epsom cemetery.

By 1911 Clement and Jane were still living at 4 Victoria Place, East Street, Epsom, and Clement was working as a general labourer for the G.P.O. He noted that he and Jane had been married for 16 years and that one of their 6 children had died. His 15 year old daughter Ada was working as a domestic housemaid while Esther aged 12, Beatrice aged 10, Rose aged 8, and Lily aged 6 were all at school.

The Surrey Recruitment Register tells us that Clement attested in Kingston on 8 November 1915 aged 46 years and 2 months, was 5 feet 5¾ inches tall, weighed 134 lbs, worked as a 'wireman' and lived at 4 Victoria Place.

Clement died in the Horton War Hospital, Epsom, Surrey on 4 June 1918, aged 48, from gas related injuries. He was buried on 8 June 1918 in plot D337 in the Epsom Cemetery. His widow Jane died in 1957 and was buried in the same plot on 17 April.

The St. Martin's Church Roll of Honour states that:
CLEMENT HARVEY, was gassed while on active service in France and died in Horton Hospital on the 4th June 1918.
Clement was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

EP SM BEC

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HEFFERN William, Lance Corporal. 38077.

3rd Battalion, East Surrey Regtiment.
Died 3 September 1918, aged 42.

William's headstone in Epsom Cemetery
William's headstone in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

William Heffern was born in Dublin in March 1876. From his 'Short Service Attestation' record we have found that he was a groom and had been an apprentice at the Curragh (HQ of Irish horse racing) with the firm of Knox, for 5 years, which expired in 1888. As he was born in 1876, this means he was seven when his apprenticeship started! When he came to England is uncertain, as he has not been found, as yet, on any UK census.

Prior to the Great War William had served in the British Army, with the 4th Battalion East Surrey Regiment (service number 1622), and had served in South Africa for six months. He was discharged from the Army in 1900 as 'time expired'.

He married Mary Wood in the registration district of Epsom in 1907. The 1911 census records that William, aged 47, and Mary, aged 45, had been married for three years and were living at 3 Chandlers Cottages, The Parade, Epsom. William worked as a 'stableman', and had two stepchildren, Cyril Wood, aged 10 and Elsie Grace Wood, aged four. Presumably Mary was a widow when she married William.

William attested in Epsom on 1 September 1914. He stated that he was a groom and that he was born in Dublin. He was 38 years 170 days old, 5 feet 4 ½ inches tall, weighed 130lbs, had a chest measurement of 34 inches with 2 inches expansion, a sallow complexion, hazel eyes, and grey hair, and that he was fit for service. He stated that his religion was 'Church of England' which seems strange as he was from Dublin.

His wife Mary was his next of kin living at 3, Chandlers Cottages, The Parade, Epsom, Surrey, with their children Cyril and Elsie.

William's 3 years and 326 days service was all spent in England, mostly in Dover. His first battalion was the 3rd East Surreys, normally stationed at Kingston upon Thames, but on the 8 August 1914 was moved to the Grand Shaft Barracks and Land Defences at Dover where it remained until the end of the war. The Battalion trained and supplied drafts for other units. From 17 March 1917 William was with 1st (Garrison Battalion) The Buffs. Then on 27 July 1917 he was transferred to 583 Company Labour Corps, and finally on 17 February 1918 he was transferred back to the 3rd East Surreys.

William was promoted Acting Lance Corporal on 19 June 1918, but on the 2 July 1918 he appeared before a medical board in Dover and was 'recommended for discharge as permanently unfit for any further military service' as 80% disabled by 'carcinoma of the tongue' which would become fatal and not respond to surgery.

William left the army on 23 July 1918 after serving 3 years 326 days at 'Home', and on 3 September 1918 he died in the 'Workhouse Infirmary' in Epsom (GRO reference: Sept 1918 Epsom 2a59). He was therefore only able to claim his Army disability pension for 41 days. William is buried in Epsom Cemetery in plot number K721.

Although when he died he was a civilian, he is commemorated by the CWGC, who state that he was the husband of Mrs. Mary Heffern, of 10, The Parade, Epsom Surrey.

William's widow Mary died at 49 Dorking Road in 1945, aged 80, and was buried in Epsom Cemetery on 8 February.

(Listed on the Ashley Road Memorial, Epsom as Heffron).

EP

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HEMMING Edward George, Private. 36539.

11th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment
Killed in Action 3 May 1917, aged 20.

Private Edward George HEMMING in the Lloyds Bank Memorial Album
Private Edward George HEMMING
in the Lloyds Bank Memorial Album

Private Hemming's inscription on the Arras Memorial
Private Hemming's inscription on the Arras Memorial
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert 2007

Edward George Hemming was born in Ewell in 1896 (GRO reference Dec 1896 Epsom 2a 23) to Walter James and Rosa Emma Hemming (nee Marsh). His parents married in St. John the Evangelist church in East Dulwich on 5 September 1895.

EDWARD GEORGE HEMMING AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Edward GeorgeBorn: 1896 Ewell
Died: 3 May 1917 France
Baptised 8 November 1896 St. Mary's church, Ewell
Gladys MayBorn: 1897 Ewell
Died: 1989
Baptised 10 October 1897 St. Mary's church, Ewell
Walter LeslieBorn: 1900 Ewell
Died: 1964
Baptised 26 August 1900 St. Mary's church, Ewell
Reginald CharlesBorn: 1902 Ewell
Died: 1979
Baptised 30 December 1902 St. Mary's church, Ewell
VioletBorn: 1904 EwellBaptised 28 August 1904 St. Mary's church, Ewell

In the 1901 census they lived at Poplar Farm, Chessington Road West Ewell, where Edward's father Walter was a farmer, employing other men. Edward had a younger sister Gladys May aged 3 and a younger brother Walter Leslie, aged 1. They had a domestic servant and one of the farm labourers living with them.

Edward was a member of the All Saints Church choir, and according to the Parish magazine he had endeared himself to all by his very loveable character.

Edward's father filled in the 1911 census form stating that he was still farming at Poplar Farm, which was prefixed with 'The Oaks', and that he and his wife had been married for 15 years and that all 5 of their children were still living. Edward was a resident pupil at Ongar Grammar School in Chipping Ongar when the 1911 census was taken but his siblings at home were listed as Gladys May aged 13, Walter Leslie aged 11, Reginald Charles aged 9 and Violet aged 6.

Edward, aged 19, attested in Whitehall, London on 28 December 1915, becoming number 11420 in the Army Cyclist Corps (ACC) at Chiseldon Army Camp near Swindon, Wiltshire. He was 5 feet 8¾ inches tall, had a chest measurement of 35½ inches with an expansion of 3½ inches. Whilst having perfect vision in his right eye, his left was rated only 5 out of 6. He had two distinguishing marks, a scar on his left temple and a scar on the left side of his neck. He lived on his parents' farm, worked as a bank clerk and his religion was Church of England.

Whilst still in England at Wimbledon, and presumably training, he was punished on 19 May 1916 with 3 days confined to barracks (CB) for being 'Absent off parade', and on 11 November 1916 to 7 days CB for being 'Absent from Tattoo ******' (illegible).

On 19 December 1916 he was posted to the 11th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment, which was in the 92nd Brigade, 31st Division, and went to France. The 11th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment was originally formed in Hull on the 2 September 1914 and was a 'Pals' battalion known as the 'Hull Tradesmen'. With the coming of conscription in early 1916, and after the huge losses on the Somme, battalions were reinforced with men from anywhere in the UK with scant regard to regional allegiances.

On the 5 March 1917 Edward received a shrapnel wound to the face, and was treated at the 29th Casualty Clearing Station and then transferred to the 58th Field Ambulance. After treatment he rejoined his Battalion on 29 March.

On 3 April he was admitted to the 57th Casualty Clearing Station (CCS) suffering with 'Quinsy Slight' (suppurative tonsillitis). On the 5 April he was taken back to Camiers, then to Etaples on 11 April. He finally rejoined his Battalion on 1 May.

The Battle of Arras lasted from 9 April until 15 May 1917. The phase of the battle between the 3 and 4 May was designated the 'Third battle of the Scarpe'. The 11th Battalion East Yorkshires contribution was to attack Oppy wood and village, going 'over the top' at 3.45am on the 3 May. The following is an extract from the battalion war diary:
The first objective was a line facing east along the ARLEUX - GAVRELLE road which runs between OPPY village and wood. The final objective was OPPY SUPPORT TRENCH 400 yards East of the village. 1st German Guards Reserve Division and the 2nd German Guards Reserve Division were opposed to us. Zero hour was at 3-45 A.M. At this hour the Battalion had been lying out in the open under a very heavy hostile barrage for 2 hours 5 minutes. 'D' and 'A' Coys had never got formed up properly into waves on this account, though they were more or less in their correct positions. However our barrage started at 3-45 A.M. advancing at the rate of 100 yards in four minutes and the Battalion followed 50 yards in rear of the Barrage. It was dark, the smoke and dust caused by our barrage, and the hostile barrage, also the fact that we were advancing on a dark wood made it impossible to see when our barrage lifted off the German trench. Consequently the Hun had time to get his machine guns up. Machine guns were firing from within the wood from trees as well as from the front trench, nevertheless the men went forward, attacked and were repulsed. Officers and NCOs reformed their men in "NO MAN'S LAND" under terrific fire and attacked again, and again were repulsed. Some even attacked a third time, some isolated parties got through the wood to OPPY VILAGE and were reported there by aeroplanes at 6 A.M. These men must have been cut off and surrounded later. The Battalion was now so scattered and casualties had been so heavy that it was decided to consolidate the only assembly trench we had when the battle started.
Trench Map - Click image to enlarge
Trench Map - Click image to enlarge

On 3 May 1917, 56 men from the 11th Battalion East Yorkshires lost their lives, including Edward, killed in action. He is commemorated on the Arras Memorial, Bay 4 & 5.

A letter from the OIC Infantry records, War Office, Imperial Institute, South Kensington, SW7, dated 12 January 1918, states that all personal property is to go to Mrs Rosa Hemming, The Oaks, West Ewell. Edward's memorial scroll and plaque were duly signed for in 1921. He was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The CWGC states Edward was the:
Son of Mr W. I.(sic) Hemming, Colvin Cottage, Meads Road, Little Common, Bexhill-on-Sea
Edward is commemorated on three local memorials: St. Mary's churchyard; Bourne Hall, Dipping Well and All Saints churchyard. He is also commemorated on the Bexhill-on-Sea memorial and the Little Common memorial.

EW BH AS

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HEPWORTH Percival Walker, Stoker 1st Class. 293062.

HMS Hawke.
Killed in Action 15 October 1914, aged 34.

Percy Hepworth c.1901
Percy Hepworth c.1901
Image courtesy of Mr Piner

Percival Walker Hepworth was born in Poplar, London, on 23 July 1880 (GRO reference: Sep 1880 Poplar 1c 635) to Edward and Emma Hepworth (nee Walker). His parents had married on 22 September 1879 in All Saints church, Poplar.

From the 1881 census the family lived at 10, Yattan Street, Tower Hamlets. Percival's father was a 28 year old barman in an ale house. His mother Emma was 22 years old. They lived with Emma's 64 year old mother and 24 year old brother.

By the 1891 census the family lived at 15, Alexander Street, West Ham, but Percival's father had died, Emma being shown as a widow. So it seems that Percy was an only child.

Percy, aged 19, joined the Royal Navy on 2 September 1899, for a period of 12 years. He was 5 feet 5 inches tall, had dark brown hair, grey eyes and a fresh complexion. He had a 'Small tattoo spot on L. forearm'.

Percy's first posting was to HMS Pembroke II, a land based navy establishment. Given the rank of Stoker 2nd Class, he served there between 2 September 1899 until 3 May 1900.

From 4 May 1900 until 17 April 1903 he served on HMS Illustrious. On 1 October 1900 he was promoted from Stoker 2nd Class to Stoker.

The 1901 census records Percy as a stoker aboard HMS Illustrious, an armoured, 1st class, twin-screw battleship, with a compliment of 318. On census night she was anchored off Malta.

Between 18 April 1903 and 7 January 1904 he served on HMS Vindictive, an Arrogant Class Cruiser, still graded as a Stoker. On 8 January he transferred back to HMS Pembroke II, and on 6 April 1904 he left the Navy by purchase, and joined the Royal Fleet Reserve. Throughout his Navy service his character was assessed as 'Very Good'.

Percy Hepworth and Wife
Percy Hepworth and wife Ada
Image courtesy of Mr Piner.

Pervcival Walker Hepworth and Ada Bayley were married on 5 November 1904 in the West Ham registration district. There is a record of another marriage between Percy Walker Hepworth and Ada Bayley in 1909 in the Epsom registration district. The reason for the two marriages was explained by their grandson William Piner. Apparently the LCC would only appoint single men to work at the Hospitals. In 1907, in order to secure a job as a fireman, Percy told them that he was single. Once established he was entitled to marry, and went through another ceremony in 1909, presumably for the benefit of the Hospital authorities.

Percy and Ada had two children, Edward Harry Hepworth, born in the Edmonton registration district and Dorothy Ada Hepworth born 26 November 1907 in the West Ham registration district.

On 3 April 1909 Percy re-enrolled in the Navy reserve for a period of 5 years.

Percival was a fireman with Edmonton Urban District Council between 8 April 1905 and 25 July 1906, and was also a fireman with the LCC at Horton Asylum between 11 November 1907 and 3 August 1914 until he was recalled to the Navy on the outbreak of war. The 1911 census records that Percy was the 'Foreman Fireman Of London County Asylum Fire Brigade' and was living with his wife Ada and their children at 'Horton Cottage', Long Grove Road, Epsom.

HMS Hawke
HMS Hawke
Image source Wikipedia (opens in a new window)

Percy was destined to serve a very short time on his return to the Navy. His ship HMS Hawke, an armoured cruiser, was torpedoed in the North Sea by U9 on 15 October 1914. She sank within 5 minutes of being hit, and lost most of her crew.

Percy's inscription on the Chatham Naval Memorial
Percy's inscription on the Chatham Naval Memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2008

Percy is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial. He also appears on the Horton War Hospital memorial in the old chapel on the Horton Asylum site. The CWGC states he was the husband of Ada Hepworth, 235, Hook Road, Epsom. Late Fireman L.C.C. Horton Mental Hospital, Epsom.

The following appeared in the Epsom Advertiser dated 30 October 1914:
EPSOM RESERVIST "MISSING."-It is feared that Mr.P.W. Hepworth, the foreman fireman at Horton Asylum, who was on H.M.S. "Hawke" when that ship sunk, has been drowned. He was reported among the large number missing, and nothing has been heard of him. A first-class stoker attached to the Royal Naval Reserve at Chatham, he leaves a widow and two children, to whom the sympathy of all deceased's friends at the asylum has been extended. He was formerly in the London Fire Brigade, and since holding his post at Horton Asylum he became very popular among his co-workers. He was a good athlete, of a very agreeable disposition, and was much liked by all those with whom he worked.
Percy was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

Percy's widow Ada Elizabeth Bayley (born in 1881in Hastings), died in 1963 as Ada E Hepworth in the Surrey Mid East registration district, aged 82.

A printed 'Home Words' card given by the Church of England to the families of the fallen.
A printed 'Home Words' card given by the Church of England to the families of the fallen.
Image courtesy of Mr Piner

An 'In Memory' card given to former LCC staff who died in the war.
An 'In Memory' card given to former LCC staff who died in the war.
Image courtesy of Mr Piner

Thanks to Mr William Piner, grandson for information and photographs.

EP HWH SB


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HERBERT Robert Bingley, Captain.

Royal Engineers (seconded from the 13th Battalion London Regiment).
Killed in action 30 September 1915, aged 32.

Robert Bingley Herbert on the Stock Exchamge Memorial
Robert Bingley Herbert on the Stock Exchamge Memorial

Robert Bingley Herbert was born on 25 November 1882 in Park Lane, Croydon, Surrey (GRO reference: Mar 1883 Croydon 2a 218), the fourth son of Edward and Helen Frances Mather Herbert (nee Young). Robert was baptised on 7 January 1883 in St. Andrew's church, Croydon. His parents had married in 1875 in the Croydon registration district and went on to have ten children. His paternal grandfather, George Sowerby Herbert, and his father ran a successful stocks and shares broking firm named 'G.S. Herbert & Sons', and were members of the London Stock Exchange.

ROBERT BINGLEY HERBERT AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Edward YoungBorn: 1876 Croydon
Died: 21 March 1961 Switzerland
Married Unknown c1909.
Stockbroker. Lived in Switzerland.
Effects valued at £53,022
Ronald YoungBorn: 1878 Croydon
Died: 23 September 1917 Wytschaete Wood, Flanders Belgium
Lieutenant in Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery. Effects valued at £7,205
Charles George YoungBorn: 1879 Croydon
Died: 18 September 1953 Lewes
Lieutenant in Grenadier Guards. Married Kate Bingley 1904 Croydon.
Stock Exchange jobber.
Effects valued at £58,736
Helen MargaretBorn: 1881 Croydon
Died: 1971 Devon
Married William George W Souttar 1908 Croydon
Robert BingleyBorn: 25 November 1882 Croydon
Died: 30 Sep 1915
 
Dorothy FrancesBorn: 1885 Croydon
Died: 1969 Oxfordshire
Married Reverend Ernest Hayford Thorold 1913 Croydon
John ReginaldBorn: 1887 Croydon
Died: 1904 Croydon
Died aged 17 
Philip HumeBorn: 15 February 1889 Croydon
Died: 1972 St Marylebone
Major in Royal Field Artillery.
Mary AlexandraBorn: 1891 Croydon
Died: ?
 
Kenneth AlfredBorn: 1894 Croydon
Died: ?
 

When the 1891 census was taken, eight-year-old Robert and his two older brothers, Ronald and Charles, were all boarding at a school called 'Harefields' in Park Road, Sutton, which was run by the Reverend James Woodburn Bamford. Robert's parents and siblings, Helen, Dorothy, John, Philip and Mary were living in Ratcliff Road, Croydon with a staff of five consisting of a cook, house parlour maid, housemaid, nurse and nursemaid. Robert continued his education at Bradfield College in Reading, Berkshire.

By 1901, the family were living at 5 Croham Park Avenue, Croydon, Surrey, which was run by a staff of a nurse, cook, housemaid and under housemaid. At home that night were 18-year-old Robert, his parents and siblings Ronald, Charles, Dorothy, John, Mary and Kenneth. Robert was by then a clerk working in the London Stock Exchange, as was his older brother Charles. Brother Ronald was an Oxford undergraduate.

Robert became a member of the London Stock Exchange in 1907 and joined the family business 'G.S. Herbert and Sons'.

Robert was a Territorial Army soldier before the Great War started, specialising as a Signals Officer in the 142 Infantry Brigade. Robert's name appeared in the London Gazette on 26 November 1909 after he had been commissioned Second Lieutenant in the 13th (County of London) Battalion, The London Regiment (Kensingtons) a Territorial battalion. He was 6 feet 1 inch tall.

The family had moved again by 1911 and were living at 18 Warrington Road, Croydon. Robert's father filled in the census form stating that he and his wife Helen had been married for 35 years and had had ten children but one had died (John). He also stated that he was a Stock and Share Broker and employer, working at the London Stock Exchange. He noted that all his children living at home were unmarried and that his son Ronald was a solicitor, Robert a Stock and Share Broker, Philip a Stockbroker's Clerk, and that his daughters Dorothy and Mary did not work. He also employed a cook, a parlour maid and a housemaid to help run his home. It would appear that one of the family members was not well, as he was temporally employing a hospital nurse.

Robert, aged 30, married Margery Grant on 7 April of 1913 in St. Mary Magdalene Church, Addiscombe. Their daughter Ann was born in Epsom on 23 January 1914 followed by their son Robert Allen on 13 June 1915.

At the outbreak of the war, Robert was seconded to the Royal Engineers and was put in command of a section of the 47th Divisional Signal Company. He went to France on 18 March 1915.

Robert was killed in the Battle of Loos near a mining structure known by the troops as 'The Tower Bridge', outside the small town of Loos on 30 September 1915; his body was buried in grave III B 13 in Maroc British Cemetery, Grenay.

His Divisional General wrote that Robert:
had proved himself throughout regardless of danger and only anxious to perform his duties to the utmost of his power.
He also added that he was certain, had Robert lived, of his advancement and distinction. Robert's Brigadier wrote that Robert had gained the devotion of his men as well as the love and admiration of his colleagues and that they would all think of him as a fine type of British officer.

On 1 October 1915 Robert's widow was granted a gratuity of £250 and a pension of £100 per year 'until further orders'. Her two children were each granted a gratuity of £83 6s. 8d. and a pension of £24 a year 'until they become disqualified'.

Probate of his effects, valued at £6020 4s. 3d., was granted to his widow Margery and his brother Charles on 13 January 1916. His address was given as 'The Corner House', Links Road, Epsom, Surrey.

A memorandum dated 14 April 1916 informed Driver L Clarke, Captain Herbert's batman, of 47th London Divisional Signal Company, that he was due 12 francs from Army funds 'due on account of servants wages'. Driver Clarke asked that the money be paid to his Grandmother Mrs Troker, at 14 Senmoor Road, Bournemouth.

Robert was awarded the 1915 Star, British War and Victory medals. Together with his plaque and scroll they were sent to his widow at 36 Beechwood Road, Sanderstead, Surrey.

Poignantly, each year on the anniversary of Robert's death, the men from his section placed a message 'In Memoriam' in The Times. They read along the lines of:
"In loyal and loving memory of our gallant officer, Captain R. B. Herbert. His Boys."
Robert's brother, Ronald was also killed in action, and they are both remembered in the book 'Croydon and the Great War'. Robert is also remembered on the Stock Exchange memorial.

Robert's headstone in the Maroc British Cemetery, Grenay
Robert's headstone in the Maroc British Cemetery, Grenay
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©2014

EGC

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HERRON Kenneth Chester, Lieutenant.

82nd Squadron Royal Air Force (RAF).
Killed in Action 24 April 1918, aged 37.

Kenneth's headstone in the Vignacourt British Cemetry
Kenneth's headstone in the Vignacourt British Cemetry
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2014

Kenneth Chester Herron was born in Richmond, Surrey in February 1881 (GRO reference: Jun 1881 Richmond S. 2a 555) the son of George Oliver Mellick and Ellen Charlotte Herron (nee Chester). Kenneth's parents had married in the parish church of Clapham on 29 July 1869, when his mother was described as a 'minor' and his father a 32 year old widower. Kenneth's father had previously married Ann Elizabeth Weston in Brighton in 1865. She died in 1867 in the Brentford registration district aged only 23, probably in childbirth, as Kenneth's half brother Robert Douglas was born in the same quarter of 1867.

In 1871, before Kenneth was born, the family lived in 'Formosa Lodge', Richmond Road, Twickenham. Kenneth's father was a 34 year old 'Wool Merchant'. His mother was aged 22, his half brothers Herbert and Robert were aged 6 and 5 respectively and his brother George Frederick was aged 8 months. Staying with the family on census night were Kenneth's aunt Charlotte and visitors Mary Hayward and Frederick Palmer. The family employed three servants.

KENNETH CHESTER HERRON AND HIS SIBLINGS
Name Born - Died Notes
Herbert George Whitby Born: 8 January 1866 Twickenham Middlesex
Died: 1937 Hampstead
Half brother. Baptised 14 March 1866, St. Mary the Virgin, Twickenham. Married Helen Leslie Mackenzie 28 March 1894, Jalapahar, India
Robert Douglas Born: 1867 Twickenham Middlesex Half brother. Baptised 2 October 1867, St. Mary the Virgin, Twickenham
George Frederick Born: 2 August 1870 Twickenham Middlesex Baptised 21 September 1870, St. Mary the Virgin, Twickenham. Served in the RAF
Walter Fitzroy Born: 4 February 1872 Twickenham Middlesex
Died: 3 April 1916 France
Baptised 8 March 1872, Holy Trinity Church, Twickenham. Served 4th Dragoon Guards. Killed in a grenade accident.
Buried Etaples, France
Florence Alice Julia Born: 1873 Twickenham Middlesex
Died: 1964 Newton Abbot
Baptised 22 August 1873, Holy Trinity Church, Twickenham
Stanley Janson Born: 4 January 1876 Richmond Surrey
Died: 1901 Shropshire
Baptised 9 February 1876, St. Matthias Church, Richmond, Surrey
Lilian Chester Born: 20 January 1878 Richmond Surrey Baptised 3 March 1878, St. Matthias Church, Richmond, Surrey
Kenneth Chester Born: 1881 Richmond Surrey
Died: 24 April 1918
Baptised 3 April 1881, St. Matthias Church, Richmond, Surrey
One other unknown, deceased before 1911

In the 1881 census, taken on 3 April (the same day Kenneth had been baptised in St. Matthias church in Richmond), the family lived at 'Harbord House', Richmond. Kenneth's father was still a 'Wool Merchant'. Sister Florence was aged 7, brother Stanley was aged 4, sister Lilian was aged 3 and Kenneth was aged just 1 month. Also living there were Kenneth's aunts Alice and Matilda. The family employed six servants.

Kenneth attended Upland House School, Epsom, a small preparatory school for boys aged between 8 and 14. He was later educated at Bradfield College and abroad.

In 1891 Kenneth's father was living at 14 De Vere Gardens, Kensington. Also living there were his 20 year old brother George and 17 year old sister Florence. Four servants were employed. Kenneth, his mother, siblings Walter, Stanley and Lilian were living at Glover's Farm, Page Wood, Charlwood, Surrey. Visiting that night were Constance and Violet Smith. Two servants were employed.

In 1901 the family was living at 14 De Vere Gardens, Kensington. Aged 63, Kenneth's father was still a 'Wool Merchant, Employer'. Kenneth and his brother Walter were both 'Wool Merchant's Clerks', whilst his brother George was an 'Electrical Engineer'. Sisters Florence and Lilian were shown as having no 'Profession or Occupation'. Visiting on census night was 72 two year old George Whitby from Yeovil, who was 'Living on own Means'. Eight servants were employed.

Kenneth's 65 year old father died in Brighton on 23 December 1902. His mother married John William Janson on 14 April 1904, in the Bromley registration district. John William died, aged 75, in 1906.

Kenneth, aged 26, a wool merchant of 43 Bolsover Street, married Alice Kate Smith, aged 21, on 31 July 1907 in Trinity Church, St. Marylebone. His brother Walter Fitzroy and his sister Lilian C. Harrison were witnesses. The marriage was reported in the New Zealand newspaper, the Otago Times dated 24 September 1907:
On July 31 a marriage of interest to New Zealanders took place at Holy Trinity Church, St. Marylebone. The bride was Miss Alice Kate Smith, daughter of the late Mr Robert Fergus Smith, of Dunedin, New Zealand. The bridegroom was Mr Kenneth Chester Herron, youngest son of the late Mr George O.M. Herron, of Newdigate Place, Surrey.
In 1911 Kenneth's widowed mother was living in the 21 roomed, Newdigate House, Newdigate, Surrey, with her daughter Lilian and 4 servants. Kenneth, a 'Wool Merchant, Employer', his wife Alice and their children, Vernon aged 2 and Eleanor aged 1 were living at 16 roomed 'Wickham Place', Witham, Essex. They employed 5 servants.

Announced in the London Gazette dated 9 February 1915, Kenneth was appointed Second Lieutenant in the Essex Yeomanry, went to France in July 1916 and transferred to the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) in August 1917. The RFC and the Royal Naval Air Service became the Royal Air Force on 1 April 1918.

Kenneth served with No. 82 Squadron, RFC, which flew Armstrong Whitworth FK8 aircraft and carried out photo reconnaisance and observation for the artillery.

Kenneth was killed in action on 24 April 1918 and is buried in grave I. F. 1. Vignacourt British Cemetry, France.

On 27 August 1918 probate was granted to Kenneth's wife Alice and his brother George Frederick, a Major in the RAF, in the sum of £75,574 6s. 9d. Kenneth's will stated that he was of Wickham Place, Wickham Bishops, Essex and of Messrs. G. R. Herron and Sons Ltd., leather merchants, St Thomas Street, S.E.

Kenneth was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal. He is commemorated on the Upland House School memorial screen in St. Martin of Tours Church, Epsom and on the Wickham Bishops, Essex, memorial.

On 21 November 1927 the Straits Times of Singapore announced that Kenneth's widow was to marry Francis James Hill of Singapore.

UHS

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HEWITT, Ronald Denne, Private. 3786.

8th Battalion Royal Fusiliers.
Killed in Action 7 July 1916, aged 19.

Ronald's inscription on the Thiepval Memorial to the missing.
Ronald's inscription on the Thiepval Memorial to the missing.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2012

Ronald Denne Hewitt was born at Southend on Sea, Essex on 30 October 1896 (GRO reference: Dec 1896 Rochford 4a 575) to James and Maud Agnes (registered as Agnes Maud) Hewitt (nee Denne). Ronald had a twin sister Beatrice Maud. Their parents had married in the March quarter of 1892 in the Registration District of St George Hanover Square. Ronald and Beatrice's elder brother Gerald James was born later that year in Pimlico, London.

However the year before, when the 1891 census was taken, their parents, James, aged 34 and Maud, aged 23, appeared as an already married couple, living as lodgers on Chilbrook Farm, Cobham, Surrey. James was noted as a Wholesale Printer and Stationer, and Employer.

On 15 December 1896 a notice appeared in The London Gazette stating:-
Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership heretofore subsisting between us the undersigned, Archibald George Buttifant and James Hewitt carrying on business as Stationers and Printers at 8 St Benet-place, Gracechurch street, in the city of London, under the style or firm of J. Hewitt and Co., has been dissolved by mutual consent as and from the 10th day of December 1896. All debts due to and owing by the said late firm will be received and paid by the said James Hewitt by whom the said business will in future be carried on. Dated 10th day of December 1896. A. G. BUTTIFANT.     JAMES HEWITT
The family lived at 'Tweedsmuir', Station Road, Prittlewell, Essex in 1901. Ronald's father James was noted as a Printer and Stationer and Employer, and presumably he commuted to work in London from there. They employed one domestic servant.

A year later a notice appeared in The London Gazette on 27 May 1902 stating: -
Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership heretofore subsisting between us the undersigned, James Hewitt and Lawrence Barnard Tappenden, carrying on business as Wholesale Stationers and Printers, at 12 St Benet-place, Gracechurch street, in the city of London, under the style or firm of J. HEWITT AND CO., has been dissolved by mutual consent as and from the 15th day of April 1902. All debts due to and owing by the said late firm will be received and paid by the said James Hewitt. _ Dated this 23rd day of April, 1902. JAMES HEWITT     LAWRENCE BARNARD TAPPENDEN
In 1911, aged 14, Ronald was a boarder at 3 Crowstone Road, Westcliff on Sea, Westcliff, Southend on Sea. This was the home and workplace of Francis William Baker, a schoolmaster, and his family. Ronald appears to be the only pupil there. His parents and twin sister Beatrice were living at their new home in "Tweedsmuir", Woodcote Park Road, Epsom, Surrey. Gerald seems to have been away visiting friends in Islington that night. Their 53-year-old father, who was still running his wholesale printers and stationers business, had filled in the census saying that he and his 44-year-old wife had been married for 20 years and had had three children all surviving. They employed one domestic servant.

Brother Gerald aged 22, who had been working as a printer, presumably for his father, died three years later in August 1914 and was buried in the Epsom cemetery on 1 September in grave number A322.

Ronald aged 18 enlisted in Epsom and joined the 8th Battalion Royal Fusiliers, which was in the 36th Brigade, 12th (Eastern) Division. He went to France on 15 November 1915, just fifteen days after his 19th birthday.

On 7 July 1916 the Battalion attacked the village of Ovillers in the battle of the Somme. The following is an extract from the Battalion War Diary:
7.7.16. 36 Inf Bde attacked OVILLERS. The 8 R.Fus. being the 1st Battn. Of the 3 assaulting Bns. The Battn was given 5 objectives:
The German front trench with right on X8c4.2. Ref
Trench Map France 57D SE.
Support line 200 yds in rear with right on X8c4.2
Lines 100 yds in rear with rt X8c7.7
The Church and houses round it
The final trench at far side of village.
     The attack was preceded by an artillery bombardment of the enemy front support lines commencing at 6.45am & lifting at 8.30am. At 8am the Bde on our right attacked towards OVILLERS & at 8.30am the 36 infantry Bde attacked. The Bn attacked directly the barrage lifted on a frontage of 1 Coy (about 120yds) in 4 lines D Coy leading followed by B C D Coys each at about 30 yds interval.

     The enemy kept up a slow machine gun fire from the right flank during the bombardment which increased in violence directly our men appeared on the parapet, the Bde on our right apparently not having destroyed all the hostile emplacements. The enemy then placed a barrage of shrapnel over the 500 yards of 'No Man's Land' across which the attack took place.

     The first line (D Coy) suffered heavy casualties from the first & momentarily overwhelmed by heavy machine gun fire was caught up by the 2nd & 3rd lines. With the 3rd the Colonel & Adgt advanced & caught up with the first line. With gallant courage the Colonel led the attack & waving his stick he shouted the familiar words of encouragement of a field day. The Adgt was seen to fall, the Col. had already been wounded in the hand & leg & before reaching the enemy line he was hit again in the thigh & soon afterwards fell when hit for the 4th time just under the heart. The line swept on still suffering heavy casualties, five officers were left but the men gallantly, led by their NCOs & reinforced by the 4th wave carried the final enemy trench & immediately dashed onto the 2nd objective which was also taken. The weakened remnants still forced forward & portions of the 3rd objective were in our hands. The Bn had lost so heavily that the 2nd objective was with difficulty put into a state of defence. There were no officers left. The Bn had captured 2 strongly fortified lines of trenches & had finally established themselves on the edge of the village. Casualties among officers were: CAPT. FEATHERSTONEHAUGH (B Coy), CAPT. CHARD (C Coy) & CAPT. FRANKLIN (D Coy) Coy Commanders were killed. CAPT & ADJUTANT ROBERTSON WALKER, MISSING BELIVED KILLED. 2nd LT. PROCTER, KILLED, 2LT. ARNOLD MISSING BELIVED KILLED & 17 other officers were wounded. The Bn went into action about 800 strong & came out 160 strong: a large proportion were wounded.

8.7.16 The Bn. Holds the captured trenches, though subjected to intermittent shelling & machine gun fire & bombing attacks. Major S.E. SANDARS sent up to take command.
Bn. Relieved by 2nd MANCHESTER REGT - goes into billets at ALBERT.
Lt. Col A.C. ANNESLEY D.S.O. died of wounds.
Trench Map of Ovillers La Boisselle - Click image to enlarge
Trench Map of Ovillers La Boisselle - Click image to enlarge

The Soldiers Died CD tells us that on 7 July 1916, the 8th Battalion Royal Fusiliers lost 154 ORs killed, and that a further 34 had died of their wounds by 10 July.

Ronald, killed in action, has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the missing.

The St Martin's church Roll of Honour states that:
RONALD DENNE HEWITT, was killed in action on the 7th July 1916 during the battle of the Somme.
Ronald was awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and Victory medal.

EP SM


Epilogue

Ronald's twin Beatrice married Ernest Wilfred Tatnall in the Registration District of East Preston, Sussex in 1927. Their daughter Jean was born in Epsom in 1929.

Ronald's parents were buried in Epsom cemetery in grave number A321, next to his late brother Gerald.

His father James died at "Tweedsmuir" 22 Woodcote Park Road, Epsom, on the 15 April 1929, aged 74, and was buried on 19 April. Burial records show that he was a wholesale printer while probate records show that he was also 'of St. Benet Place, Gracechurch Street London' and had left just over £6,222.

His mother Maude later died, aged 72, on 18 July 1937 at 28 Walsingham Road, Hove and was buried with her late husband on 22 July 1937. Administration of her effects, valued at just over £380, was given to her daughter Beatrice, wife of Ernest Wilfred Tatnall.

Beatrice's 44-year-old husband died in 1944, while she reached the age of 79 before dying in the early part of 1976 in the Brighton area. It is information from her death entry (GRO Reference: Mar 1976 Brighton 18 0582) that gives us her and Ronald's birthday as 30 October 1896.

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HIGGINS Malcolm Leslie, Private. 52.

11th (Western Australia) Battalion Australian Infantry (A.I.F).
Died of wounds 22 August 1916, aged 26.

Malcolm's headstone
Malcolm's headstone
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert

Malcolm Leslie Higgins was born in West Ewell on 19 December 1890 (GRO reference: Mar 1891 Epsom 2a 18), to Gordon and Annie Sophia Higgins (nee Stevens). His parents had married in 1879 in the registration district of Bromley, Kent and had ten children.

MALCOLM LESLIE HIGGINS AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Gordon Lissa Born: 1880 Bromley Kent
Died: 1945 Norfolk
Married 1904.
Moved to Norfolk by 1912.
Muriel Catherine Born: 16 February 1881 Lewisham
Died: 1974 Tonbridge
Unmarried
John Brooke Born: 1886 Lewisham
Died: 1968.
Buried Kelmscott Cemetery, Perth, Western Australia.
Unmarried.
Served 3 years Queens Westminster Volunteers.
Emigrated to Australia with brother Hugh on 12 April 1912.
Served in the same A.I.F. battalion as Malcolm.
Living in 1958 with brother Kenneth.
Hugh Melville Born: 1884 Lewisham
Died: 1972 Wellington, Western Australia.
Emigrated with brother John to Australia on 12 April 1912.
Served in the 51st Battalion A.I.F.
Married in 1920 in Perth, Western Australia.
Gerald Ruthven Born: 1888 Lewisham
Died: 1934 Bruce Rock, Western Australia
Emigrated to Perth, Western Australia, date unknown.
Served in the same A.I.F. battalion as Malcolm.
Married in 1919 in Perth, Western Australia.
Malcolm Leslie Born: 19 December 1890 West Ewell
Died: 22 August 1916
 
Kenneth Stuart Born: 9 November 1892 West Ewell
Died: 1961.
Buried Kelmscott Cemetery, Perth, Western Australia.
Baptised 29 January 1894 St. Mary's, Chessington.
Unmarried.
Emigrated 2 August 1912 from London, arrived Freemantle, Western Australia on 3 September 1912.
Served as an A.I.F. Gunner in the 24 Howitzer Brigade.
Living in 1958 with brother John.
Alan Wilfred Born: 1895 West Ewell
Died: 1968 Havering, Greater London
Baptised St. Mary's Ewell 4 April 1895.
Served, East Surrey Regiment.
Discharged 1918.
Married 1925.
Donald Gordon Born: 1897 West Ewell
Died: 1989. Buried Manning Cemetery, Perth, Western Australia.
Baptised St. Mary's Ewell 14 November 1897.
Emigrated 29 March 1924 from London to Freemantle, Western Australia.
Dora Isabella Born: 3 July 1899 West Ewell
Died: 1999 Norfolk
Baptised St. Mary's Ewell 10 September 1899.
Unmarried.

In the 1881 census, before Malcolm was born, the family lived at 67 Braxfield Road, Lewisham. Malcolm's father was a 26 year old warehouseman looking after tailors' trimmings. His mother was aged 24, and he had two older siblings, Gordon aged 1 and Muriel aged 2 months.

When Malcolm was baptised on 15 March 1891 in St. Mary's church in Chessington, the family was living at 'Wendover Villa', Chessington Road, West Ewell, and his father was noted as being a Warehouseman. The following month, the 1891 census was taken on the night 5 April and the family was recorded as living at the same address. Three-month-old Malcolm's siblings were noted as Gordon aged 11, Muriel aged 16, John aged 7, Hugh aged 4, and Gerald aged 2. Sarah Stokes, aged 14, worked for the family as a domestic servant.

Wendover Villa
Wendover Villa, Chessington Road, West Ewell
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©2015

In 1901 Malcolm was a 10 year old pupil at boarding school at 7 Margaret Street, East Marylebone, under the headship of a Church of England clergyman, William Whitworth. His brother John was also boarding there. The rest of Malcolm's family were still living in West Ewell and his father was now a manager at a woollen cloth wholesalers. Brother Gordon was working as a salesman and Hugh was an apprentice, both for a wholesale draper while sister Muriel was at home and Gerald at school. He had another 4 siblings, Kenneth Stuart aged 8, Alan aged 6, Donald aged 3 and Dora aged 1. Malcolm later attended Tiffin Grammar School in Kingston upon Thames. His brother Gordon married in 1904.

On 5 May 1910 Malcolm's brother Kenneth enlisted for 4 years into the Territorial Force, London Brigade R.F.A. Also that year Malcolm's mother, aged 53, died and when the 1911 census was taken only his widowed father and six of his siblings were living at home. Muriel aged 30 was keeping house, John aged 24 was a clerk in a timber brokers, Kenneth aged 18 was a clerk for a shipping merchant and Alan aged 16 was a clerk for a wholesale drapery, while Donald aged 13 and 11 year old Dora were at school. His father was now a woollen buyer for tailors' trimmings.

Brothers Malcolm, Gerald, Hugh, Kenneth, Donald and John all emigrated to Australia.

Aged 20, Malcolm set sail from London on 25 March 1911 for Freemantle, Western Australia aboard the ship Australind. After arriving, Malcolm headed east inland to the mining area of Kalgoorlie where, according to the 1916 electoral roles, he and his brother Gerald had found work as labourers in the Main Camp of Kurrawang, Yilgarn. Their other brothers were all working at that time in the Swan district of Perth; Kenneth was working as a farm employee for L.G.B. Weston in Tambellup, brother Hugh was working as a tree puller and John as a labourer both in Harvey.

On 10 September 1914 at Helena Vale, Western Australia, Malcolm enlisted into the 11th Battalion Australian Imperial Force (A.I.F), the first battalion to be raised in Western Australia. His 26 year old brother Gerald had enlisted into the same battalion the day before and had the previous service number 51. Gerald stated that he had previously served for 4 years with the 16th Battalion City of London. Gerald was wounded in action on four separate occasions but survived and was discharged from the A.I.F in 1919.

Malcolm stated that he was 23 years and 8 months, worked as a labourer, and had previously served for 1 year in the 3rd London Brigade, Royal Field Artillery. After Malcolm's death, his eldest brother Gordon stated that his brother's occupation had been 'Sleeper Cutting'. His father Gordon, of 'Wendover Villa' West Ewell, was his next of kin, however his father died on 16 October 1919, and Malcolm's eldest brother, also Gordon, became his official next of kin. He was medically examined at Blackboy Hill (so named after the native Blackboy bushes) and found to be fit for active service.

Malcolm was 6 feet 1¼ inches tall, weighed 172 lbs and had a chest measurement of 38 inches. He had a fair complexion, grey eyes, brown hair, and had a scar on the inside of his left leg below the knee. His religion was C of E.

On 2 November 1914 Malcolm and his brother Gerald embarked with the 11th Battalion from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board Transport A11 Ascanius, to Egypt, and remained there until he left on H.M.T. Suffolk to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF), leaving Egypt via the port of Alexandria on 2 March 1915 to join the Gallipoli campaign. The Gallipoli campaign commenced on 25 April 1915, and the 11th Battalion was one of the first ashore landing about 4.30 am. Then on 5 May they mounted the first Australian raid on Turkish positions at Gaba Tepe, and were subsequently involved in defending the front line ANZAC beachhead.

Malcolm's service records show that he was admitted to hospital on 22 June 1915, but does not state why or when he was discharged. He did not see the end of the Gallipoli campaign as on 6 September 1915 he was again admitted to hospital suffering with diarrhoea. The next day he embarked on Hospital Ship (HS) Mahen arriving at Malta on 12 September, where he was admitted to Valetta Military Hospital. By 27 September he was discharged to duty, but presumably still not fully recovered as on 7 October he was re-admitted to hospital suffering from influenza and diarrhoea. On 16 October he was sent to England aboard the ship Carisbrook Castle, a passenger steamer that had been converted to a hospital ship. Arriving in England on 23 October he was admitted to the 3rd London General Hospital (LGH), Wandsworth. (NOTE: The building that accommodated the 3rd LGH was built in the 1850s, the foundation stone being laid by Queen Victoria on 11 July 1857. It was originally called the Royal Patriotic Asylum, and was to be used for the education and training of 300 orphan daughters of men who had died in the Crimean war. The first orphans were admitted on 1 July 1859. The building stands today, on Wandsworth Common, having been renovated after years of neglect, and boasts flats, studios, offices, workshops, a drama school and a restaurant.)

Malcolm was eventually discharged from hospital and joined the ANZAC base depot at Weymouth, Dorset on 15 December 1915. At about this time his comrades of the 11th Battalion were being withdrawn from Gallipoli. He then went absent without leave between 22 December 1915 and 5 January 1916, and forfeited 9 day's pay for his misdemeanour. I wonder did he quietly travel up to West Ewell to spend Christmas with his family?

On 20 May 1916 he embarked from Weymouth to rejoin the 11th Battalion, which was in the 3rd Brigade of the 1st Australian Division. He arrived on 29 May at their base camp at Etaples, France. Then, between 25 June and 27 July Malcolm left the 11th Battalion to work with the 1st Entrenching Battalion, rejoining the 11th on 30 July, having spent 28 and 29 July in hospital. On 5 August he was attached to the 3rd MGC for training. The next entry on Malcolm's service record is the last, the CO of the 3rd Australian MGC reporting him wounded and missing on 22 August 1916. Then the note was added:
Both feet blown off by a shell and was taken to a forward dressing station; when sent to the rear was "bearing up well".
An eyewitness later reported that in fact both legs below his knees had been blown off. Another comrade witnessed that:
Malcolm Higgins of A. Coy, a big chap of about 6ft. one of the original force and a very fine fellow. Both his legs were blown off at Pozières in August by a big lump of shell. We carried him back to the 1st Aid Station. He was very cheerful and said to us "I expect this is a Blighty one isn't it." Whether he died or not I have never heard. He had been away at another part of the line at the time of our 1st attack at Pozières in July.
On 22 August the 1st Australian division was fighting to take Mouquet Farm (know as Moo Cow farm to the troops), a heavily fortified position to the north of Poziè res. At 6pm the Division attacked the German trench line Fabeck Graben but heavy machine gun fire forced them to retire. Some managed to get into Mouquet Farm but were forced to withdraw to a line south of the Mouquet Farm - Courcellette track. Raiding parties of the 11th Battalion started late and linked with the flank battalions. Many were killed during the attack.

Malcolm died of his wounds and was buried in Warloy-Baillon Communal Cemetery, plot VII. D. 25.

Before he went into battle on the Somme, on 17 August 1916, he made a will leaving all his possessions to his father. No doubt Malcolm's father was informed of his son's death soon after it occurred, however he later received a letter from the records office dated 27 April 1917 with additional information, telling him that his son died of wounds received in action, and where he was buried.

Malcolm's effects were sent to his father at 'Wendover Villa', West Ewell, in two separate parcels on 23 February 1917 and 2 May 1917, and comprised of:

3 discsfountain pen3 handkerchiefs
metal mirrorink tablet caseprayer book
walletpocket bookBrush
coinlinen bagKnife
cigarette casecardsLetters
4 badgesphotos 

Malcolm was awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.

Some of Malcolm's medals
Some of Malcolm's medals
Image courtesy of eBay seller nostalgicshop © 2010

Malcolm's inscription on his parents grave
Malcolm's inscription on his parents grave
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2011

EW BH AS PG

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HILL Sidney Lewis, Driver. 120162.

'B' Battery 110th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery (RFA).
Killed in Action 20 April 1918, aged 20.

Sidney's headstone in the Godewaersvelde British Cemetery
Sidney's headstone in the Godewaersvelde British Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

Sidney Lewis Hill was born on 4 February 1898 (GRO reference: Mar 1898 Epsom 2a 26) to Thomas and Georgina Hill (nee Terry). Sidney's father, Thomas, was born in Birmingham and his mother, Georgina in Epsom. They married in 1886 in Epsom (Thomas being mistakenly indexed as 'Hills'). They had eleven children, three of whom died as infants and another two dying very young.

SIDNEY LEWIS HILL AND HIS SIBLINGS
Name Born Baptised Married Died
Thomas Frederick 1887 Epsom      
George Herbert 1888 Epsom 28 November 1889 St Martins Eleanor Maud Malins 1911 Epsom District  
Gertrude Emily 1891 Epsom 17 January 1892 St Martins   March 1892 aged 4 months; of Victoria Place; buried Epsom Cemetery, plot C71A
Gladys Beatrice May 1893 Epsom 2 July 1893 St Martins   December 1893 aged 10 months; of Victoria Place; buried Epsom Cemetery plot C71A
Ethel Violet 1894 Epsom      
?       ?
Sidney Lewis 4 February 1898 Epsom     20 April 1918 France aged 20
Cecil Walter 1900 Epsom   Lily Isabel Fisher 1919 Kingston District 1968 Richmond District
(Albert) Leonard 1903 Epsom     July 1923 aged 20; of Harwood House, 8 The Common; buried Epsom Cemetery plot D389
Bernard Reginald 17 March 1906 Epsom     1981 Sutton District
Ivy Margaret Millicent 1909 Epsom     August 1922 aged 13; of 8 The Common; buried Epsom Cemetery plot D389
Note: Their mother Georgina died in 1929 aged 63 and was buried in plot D389

In 1901 the family was living at 51, Victoria Place, Epsom. Sidney's father Thomas was a groom, and his eldest brother Thomas Frederick, was an errand boy. Sidney was aged 3, and his three other siblings were George Herbert aged 13, Ethel Violet aged 6 and Cecil Walter aged 1. Two sisters, Gertrude Emily and Gladys Beatrice May had died during the 1890's (see table above).

The 1911 census shows that that the family had moved to Harwood House on Epsom Common. This would appear to be the same house, near Isabella Cottages, in which John Henry Chambers lived at the time of the 1901 census. Sidney's father, Thomas was now working as a shop assistant in an 'oil and colour' shop, whilst his mother Georgina was a self-employed laundress. Brother George, aged 22 was a domestic groom, and sister Ethel, aged 17 was at home. The remaining siblings were at school with the exception of Ivy, aged only 2. Emily Terry, Georgina's mother, was living with the family in both the 1901 and 1911 censuses, and died a few months after the 1911 census was taken, aged 69, and is buried in plot C71A Epsom Cemetery with her grandchildren Gertrude Emily and Gladys Beatrice May. Sidney's eldest brother Thomas was working as a 'Hall Man' at Mentmore in Bedfordshire, which was then owned by the Earl of Rosebery.

Army pension records and the Surrey Recruitment Registers combined provide us with the following information. Sidney enlisted in the 3rd (King's Own) Hussars within days of the outbreak of war by pretending to be 19 years of age; he was actually 16 and a half. He attested at Epsom on 14 August 1914 and was examined on 28 August 1914. He was 5 feet 77/8 inches tall, weighed 126 lbs and had a chest measurement of 34 inches with an expansion of 3 inches. He had a fair complexion, grey eyes and light brown hair. He was a baker by trade and his religion was Church of England. He then joined his unit at Bristol on the same day.

Two letters from Sidney's mother Georgina are included amongst his pension papers, applying for his discharge. The first enclosed his birth certificate as proof that he was under age, and she said that 'he was supporting me the whole time he was at home. I have also four younger than him'. The second letter is addressed to the Colonel in Charge, 15th King's Hussars at Longmoor Camp in Hampshire and requested Sidney's discharge on the grounds that 'he as(sic) been under medical treatment so many times since he joined the Army'; further, 'He also inlisted (sic) without the consent of his father and mother. And he also inlisted (sic) in the wrong age'. A note has been added by Army personnel; 'Age 16 10/12 months on 3.12.14'. Sidney was discharged on 5 January 1915, having served 145 days.

However, he appears to have wasted little time and re-enlisted at the first opportunity, joining the Army Veterinary Corps (AVC) as a horse keeper, with service number SE/9314. Apparently he spent little time with the AVC, as his medal card tells us that he went to France on 27 June 1915 with the Royal Field Artillery (RFA), with service number 120162.

Sidney was killed in action on 20 April 1918 and is buried in plot II.AA.12. Godewaersvelde British Cemetery. Godewaersvelde is a village near the Belgian border, about 16 kilometres south-west of Ieper (in Belgium), and is half-way between Poperinge (in Belgium) and Hazebrouck (in France). The CWGC web site states that after the armistice the graves of five men from the 110th Brigade RFA were brought in from a point near the Mont des Cats.

Between 9 April and 29 April 1918 the Germans launched one of their spring offensives, later called the Battle of the Lys or Operation Georgette. On 20 April no infantry attacks were launched, but the Official History records that there was incessant and heavy shelling with gas, particularly of Nieppe Forest and the neighbourhood of Kemmel. Was Sidney was the victim of a gas shell?

The Epsom Advertiser dated 31 May 1918 published the following:
DRIVER SIDNEY LEWIS HILL, R.F.A., third son of Mr. Thomas Hill, Epsom Common, has been killed in action. He spent four Christmases in France. The receipt from an officer of their son's cigarette case was the first intimation Driver Hill's parents had that he was dead.
Sidney was awarded the 1914 - 1915 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

EP CC

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HILL Walter John, Driver. 112789.

'C' Battery, 34th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.
Died 30 September 1918, aged 23.

Walters inscription on the CWGC Memorial in Epsom Cemetery
Walters inscription on the CWGC Memorial in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

Walter John Hill was born in 1895 in Preston-Upon-Wye, Herefordshire (GRO reference: Dec 1895 Weobley 6a 462), the son of Thomas and Clara Hill (nee Pembridge), who had married in 1893. Walter was baptised on 3 November 1895.

He had an older sister Edith Emma who had been born in 1893 and two younger siblings, Esther Nita born 1897 and George Henry born 1899.

Walter was aged 5 when the 1901 census was taken. He and his family were living in Nelson Cottage in Bridge Sollers where his 41-year-old father worked as a herdsman.

Ten years later he appeared as working for his uncle Christopher Arthur Hill on his farm 'Hill House' in Preston-Upon-Wye.

As Walter's service record has not survived we know very little about his war service. All we know is that he was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal, he served as a driver in the Royal Field Artillery and died on 30 September 1918 in the Horton War Hospital. At this time influenza was a major killer.

Walter and three of his comrades, who also died in 1918 in Horton War Hospital, are buried in Epsom Cemetery in grave K. 651. Their names appear on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Screen Wall there.

The CWGC state that he was the son of Thomas and Clara Hill, of 4, St. John's Buildings, Aberystwyth, Wales.

CWGC

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HOARE Reginald Alexander, Private. 231149.

2nd Battalion London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers).
Killed in Action 16 June 1917, aged 24.


Reginald's inscription on the Arras memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

Reginald Alexander Hoare was born in 1892 (GRO reference: Dec 1892 Epsom 2a 20) to Alexander and Mary Ann Hoare (nee Gillman). His parents had married in St. Martin of Tours church, Epsom on Boxing Day 1889. When Reginald was baptised in the same church, on 11 December 1892 the family was living at 32, Victoria Place.

In the 1901 census the family lived at 6, Town Cottages, Epsom, near the High Street. Walter's father was a 37 year old butcher's salesman. His mother was 35. Reginald had an older brother Walter Stanley aged 9, who would also be killed in action, and a sister Alice Rosina Mary aged 5. Also staying with the family as a boarder was William T. Aldridge, a 25 year old journeyman butcher.

Aged 18, Reginald was working as a solicitor's clerk when the 1911 census was taken and was living with his parents and siblings at 36, Hook Road, Epsom. His father filled out the form stating that he and his wife had been married for 21 years and that all their three children were still living. His father was by then a manager in a butcher's shop while his brother Walter was a butcher's assistant. His sister Alice was working as a domestic. She later married Carl Henry Blackadar on 6 April 1921 in St. Barnabas church, Epsom but died in 1926 aged 30.

Reginald and his brother Walter were both members of the Epsom Brotherhood.

Reginald and his brother Walter both attested in Westminster into the 2nd Battalion London Regiment, and must have joined up together as they were given consecutive numbers, 231149 and 231148. None of their service papers have survived.

At the time of Reginald's death the 2nd Londons were in the 169th Brigade, 56th Division, and were in the Arras sector. The Arras battle was particularly bloody, the average daily death toll being higher than that for the Somme battles. Despite the carnage going on all around, the war diary of the 2nd Londons tells us that on 7 June 1917 the afternoon was set aside for;

"Regimental Sports, which promised to be a great success, large entries and a record attendance being promised, but owing to heavy rain in the morning, no racing being possible, they had to be postponed until the next afternoon. The Boxing Finals were however fought to the strains of the Divisional Band and a concert was held in the evening."
The postponed sports were duly held on 8 June, were a great success, and prizes were distributed by the CO. Some light relief for a brief spell amidst death and desolation.

At 9.30pm on 10 June the battalion moved up to take over the front line. The next day, 11 June was spent improving the shallow and narrow trenches, building dugouts and erecting wire. Over 50 bodies were found and buried, some in a very bad state of decay.

"Our front line (TOOL TRENCH and FARM TRENCH) was shelled intermittently by the enemy during the morning, little damage being done."
The next two days, 12 and 13 June were relatively quiet with light hostile shelling, and low flying enemy aircraft being driven off many times by Lewis gun fire.

On 14 June at zero hour, 7.20am two battalions on the immediate left of the 2nd Londons "went over" to attack HOOK TRENCH and LONG TRENCH. To assist the attack, the 2nd Londons, at zero plus 1 1/2 minutes opened heavy rifle and Lewis gun fire on the enemy trenches. The enemy responded with shelling and a counter attack which was driven off. The war diary states losses were 3 killed and 12 wounded.

June 15 was a quiet day, and at 12.30 am on the 16 June they were relieved by the London Rifle Brigade (LRB), and moved back to battalion support position in the MARLIERE area.

The battalion rested during the day on 16 June but, states the war diary, "at night 2 Coys plus 50 ORs went up to the front line trenches to dig and also to wire."

Finally, the war diary tells us that work continued on 17 June but was severely hindered by a heavy hostile barrage. During an enemy counter attack on the 3 Division the 2nd Londons suffered 3 killed and 8 wounded.

The war diary seems at odds with the casualty figures for the 2nd Londons from the Soldiers Died CD which states that on 15 June, 47 men were killed in action, and on 16 June, 83 men were killed in action. This is confirmed by the CWGC which also tells us that the vast majority of the men have no known grave and are commemorated on the Arras memorial. Could the compiler of the war diary have missed such a large number of men?

Reginald was awarded the Victory medal and the British War medal.

The CWGC states that he was the son of Alexander and Mary Hoare of 36, Hook Road, Epsom, and that he is commemorated on the Arras Memorial, bay 9.

Reginald's father died in his home aged 78 and was buried on 28 May 1942 in grave F263A in Epsom Cemetery. His mother died also at home and was buried near her late husband in grave F263 on 24 October 1946.

EP EB SB

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HOARE Walter Stanley, Sergeant. 231148.

2nd Battalion London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers).
Killed in action 24 April 1918, aged 26.

Walter's headstone in Hangard Communal extension
Walter's headstone in Hangard Communal extension
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2011

Walter Stanley Hoare was born in 1891 (GRO reference: Dec 1891 Epsom 2a 20) to Alexander and Mary Ann Hoare (nee Gillman). His parents had married in St. Martin of Tours church, Epsom on Boxing Day 1889. When Walter was baptised in the same church, on 6 December 1891 the family was living at 32, Victoria Place.

In the 1901 census the family lived at 6, Town Cottages, Epsom, near the High Street. Walter's father was a 37 year old butcher's salesman. His mother was 35. Walter had a younger brother Reginald Alexander aged 8, who would also be killed in action, and a sister Alice Rosina Mary aged 5. Also staying with the family as a boarder was William T. Aldridge a 25 year old journeyman butcher.

Walter and his brother Reginald were both members of the Epsom Brotherhood.

Aged 19, Walter was working as a butcher's assistant when the 1911 census was taken and was living with his parents and siblings at 36, Hook Road, Epsom. His father filled out the form stating that he and his wife had been married for 21 years and that all their three children were still living. His father was by then a manager in a butcher's shop while his brother Reginald was a solicitor's clerk. His sister Alice was working as a domestic. She later married Carl Henry Blackadar on 6 April 1921 in St. Barnabas church, Epsom but died in 1926 aged 30.

Walter and his brother Reginald both attested in Westminster into the 2nd Battalion London Regiment, and must have joined up together as they were given consecutive numbers, 231148 and 231149. None of their service papers have survived.

At the time of Walter's death the 2nd Londons were in the 169th Brigade, 56th Division, and were billeted at Dainville, south of Arras. The war diary entry for 24 April 1918 describes a 'cutting out' raid commencing at 9.15pm by 1 officer and 41 other ranks. Despite machine gun fire the raiding party advanced to within 20 yards of its objective. The enemy began bombing along trenches towards them but were kept off by "our Rifle Grenadiers". The raiding party went a considerable distance down the German trench and bombed two shafts en route. After remaining in the trenches for half an hour they withdrew. The war diary totals casualties as one officer missing, one NCO killed, eleven other ranks wounded. However, Soldiers Died CD shows eleven Other Ranks killed in action including Walter.

The CWGC shows that Walter is buried in Hangard Communal Cemetery Extension plot 1 H 2. Hangard is a village 5 kilometres south of Villers-Bretonneux which is some distance from Dainville. Was Walter wounded and evacuated south before he died, or perhaps his grave was concentrated into Hangard after the war? Perhaps both?

Walter was awarded the Victory medal and the British War medal.

Walter's father died in his home aged 78 and was buried on 28 May 1942 in grave F263A in Epsom Cemetery. His mother died also at home and was buried near her late husband in grave F263 on 24 October 1946

EP EB SB

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HOCKLY Nigel Alan, Apprentice

Mercantile Marine. "Galgorm Castle" (Belfast).
Killed 27 February 1917, aged 17.

Nigel Hockly's name on the Tower Hill memorial
Nigel Hockly's name on the Tower Hill memorial
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©2008

Nigel Alan Hockly was born on 14 August 1899 (GRO reference: Sep 1899 Brentford 3a 108) in Ealing, Middlesex, to Edward John and Ada Hockly (nee Bennett), who were married in Plymouth in 1884. Nigel was baptised on 9 September 1899 by his father Edward, a curate, at St Mary's parish church, Ealing. The parish records show that the family lived at 33, Uxbridge Road at the time. It is interesting to note that the birth registration entry for Nigel in the free BMD database, omits the middle name Alan, but the parish record shows Nigel Alan.

Nigel's grandfather John Minett Hockly, was not at home with his wife Caroline and children on the night of the 1861 Plymouth census but found at sea as 'Master' in the Royal Navy on the ship 'Odin', which was sailing to Yantai China. John married Caroline Rebecca Cole in 1855 in Plymouth, Devon and in 1858 their daughter Alice Laura was born, followed by Edward John Hockly in 1860, Nigel's father. Between 1883 and 1885 Edward John Hockly was curate of St Mary Major in Exeter, and in 1885 moved to Chesham, Buckinghamshire to work as a curate there. The family were to move three more times before Nigel was born, first to St Pancras in 1886, then to Trowbridge, Wiltshire, and finally in 1890 to Ealing, where Edward John was headmaster of Ealing Grammer School.

In the 1891 census before Nigel was born, the family lived at 14, The Park, Ealing. Nigel's father Edward John was a 31 year old clerk in a holy order and a schoolmaster. His mother Ada was 29. Nigel had three siblings Colin Edward aged 5, Frances Ada Minette aged 3 and Douglas aged 10 months.

The 1901 census shows the family living at 1-3 Hopton Road, Streatham. Nigel's father Edward John was a 41 year old Clergyman running a Church of England school employing eight servants to look after 16 pupils. His mother Ada was a 37 year old school mistress. Nigel now had another brother, Donald aged 8 who had been born in the Isle of Man. Nigel's oldest brother Colin Edward was not on this census with them, but was a 15 year old cadet in the Thames Nautical Training Ship for Officers, H M S Worcester, in Swanscombe Kent.

The family moved several more times, in 1904 to Chichester, in 1905 to Stepney, in 1908 back to Ealing and in 1908 to Hanwell.

In the 1911 census Nigel's parents, Edward and Ada, appear living at 85 Grove Avenue Hanwell. The census also records that they had been married for 26 years. The only child living with them was their youngest daughter Eileen Violette, who was been born in Streatham on 9 June 1901, after the 1901 census had been taken. On her baptism entry the family were shown to be living at The Elms, Coventry Park, Streatham. She is however noted as being aged 9 in this census. Nigel, now aged 11, was a student in the St. John's Foundation School for the sons of poor clergy of the Church of England. The address of this school was given as Epsom Rd Leatherhead.

All the moves were associated with Nigel's fathers work as a priest, the Hanwell move to become Chaplain to Hanwell Asylum until 1913. It seems that Nigel's family, moved to Epsom, Surrey around 1913 where Nigel's father would be one of the Chaplains at Horton Mental Asylum until 1932, and also Chaplain to the Forces between 1915 and 1919.

Nigel Alan Hockly was killed on 27 February 1917 when his ship "Galgorm Castle" was sunk by gunfire from a submarine, 90 miles west of Fastnet. The "Galgorm Castle" was a 1,596 ton small sailing ship, carrying a cargo of maize from Buenos Aires. Ten others were lost at the same time including two American crewmen.

Kelly's directory of 1918 lists Nigel's father, the Rev. Edward John Hockly M.A, as living at 5 Temple Road Epsom. The 1922 edition lists him living at 'The Grot', Temple Road Epsom and the 1924 edition at 36 Temple Road Epsom, but Crockford's, shows his address between 1913-1932 as 26 Temple Road, Epsom. The British phone book, between 1927 and 1932, lists him as living in 'Grot Temple Road Epsom'.

It is interesting to note that whilst Nigel was killed in the war aged 17 his older sister Frances Ada Minette Hockly lived to be 97, dying in Maidstone in 1985. She had never married, and between 1930 and 1948 had worked as a nurse in India and Iraq.

Nigel's brother Douglas also lived to a very good age, 95 and died in the same year, 1985, in Shepway, Kent

The Tower Hill memorialThe Tower Hill memorial
The Tower Hill memorial
Images courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©2008

Nigel is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial to merchant seamen who lost their lives in the war.

EP

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HODGSON William, Private. 162283.

Labour Corps 368 Home Service Company
Died 8 November 1918, aged 38

Private Hodgson's inscription which is on his gravestone which is in St Mary's Ewell.
Private Hodgson's inscription which is on his gravestone which is in St Mary's Ewell.
Copyright image courtesy of Clive Gilbert


William Hodgson was born in 1880 (GRO reference: Dec 1880 Epsom 2a 19) to William and Caroline Hodgson (nee Remnant). His parents had married in St. Mary's church, Ewell on 1 January 1870. He was baptised at St Mary's Ewell on 5 December 1880.

In the 1881 census the family lived in West Street, Ewell. William's father, a Yorkshireman, was a labourer, probably with South West Railways for whom he had been working in 1871. They also had a 10 year old daughter called Mary Ann who was baptised at St Mary's in 1871.

In the 1891 census the family still lived in West Street, and William senior was a 'Railway Labourer Plate'.

In 1901 William was lodging with the Stokes family at 28 Stockdale Road in Battersea, and was working as a stone mason. Williams's parents lived at Mount Pleasant, Ewell and William senior was now a 'foreman platelayer'.

Also in the 1901 census, William's future wife Ada, born on 31 August 1881, was a laundress, and lived with her parents in Meadow Walk, Ewell.

William married Ada Louisa Voller on 3 July 1907 in St. Mary's church, Ewell. They had a son William Robert, born on 17 December 1909. The birth is shown in the parish register for St. Mary's Ewell where he was baptised. The family was living in Meadow Walk, Ewell and William is recorded as a stonemason. They were still living there when the 1911 census was taken.

William was a member of the 'Ewell Old Boys' Association' during the year 1913-1914 and still lived at 8 Meadow Walk.

William enlisted at Kingston on 30 October 1916, aged 36. The "Soldiers Died" CD shows that William was originally No. 71617 in the Middlesex Regiment, and one of the few remaining 'Burnt Papers' at the National Archive shows William's service number 71617 struck out and 162283 substituted. When he was medically examined he was passed as only medical category B2, which excluded him from front line service. William was posted to the 368 Home Service Company, Labour Corps. He had expressed a wish to join the Royal Engineers (RE), and is commemorated on the Ewell Old Boys' Memorial as having served in the RE, but no record has been found to substantiate this.

William died on 8 November 1918 and is buried in St Mary's Churchyard, Ewell, Old Ground 544A, with a private memorial, not CWGC. His cause of death could have been the result of an accident or possibly he was a victim of the influenza epidemic that took more lives worldwide than the Great War.

A Ministry of Pensions form stated that William's widow was eligible for consideration of a pension under the Royal Warrant of the 29th March 1917, but I have been unable to find any pension records for him.

The CWGC states he was the:
Son of William and Caroline Hodgson; husband of Ada L Hodgson, of 8 Meadow Walk, Ewell. Born at Ewell.
William's mother died in 1930, and his widow Ada Louisa died, aged 92, in 1974.

BH EW ES BSM

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HOGARTH Edward, Private. 30040.

13th Battalion The King's (Liverpool Regiment).
Died of Wounds 7 November 1916, aged 26.

Edward's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Edward's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2016

Edward Hogarth was born in Preston in 1890 (GRO reference: Dec 1890 Preston 8e 534), the son of Joseph and Margaret Hogarth (nee Stanton). His parents had married ion 15 July 1888 in Emanuel Church, Preston. NOTE: In some records Hogarth is spelt Hoggarth.

Aged 6 months, Edward was living in 1891 with his parents and 5 year old brother John at 5 Homer Street, Preston. His father, aged 29, worked as a 'cotton taper' and his mother, aged 26, as a 'cotton rover'. Also living there on census night was his maternal grandfather Patrick Stanton.

I have been unable to find and likely 1901 census records for Edward.

When the 1911 census was taken, Edward, aged 20, was recorded as a nephew living at 45 Sedgwick St Preston Lancashire with his 49 year old aunt Margaret and her 70 year old husband Thomas Melling. Edward's aunt, Margaret Jane Hogarth, had married Thomas Melling in Preston RD in 1899. Also recorded as step-children to Thomas Melling were John Hogarth, born in America, and Matilda Hogarth. Thomas' children were recorded as Elizabeth aged 28 and Agnes aged 9, and his grandson as Thomas aged 4. Edward was working as a shop assistant in a drapery shop.

Edward served with the 13th Battalion The King's Liverpool Regiment which was in the 9th Brigade, 3rd Division. The battalion fought in the Battle of the Somme and it is most likely that he was wounded in the Somme battle.

Edward died on 7 November 1916 in Horton War hospital and was buried in grave K646 in Epsom Cemetery on 10 November, and is commemorated on the Screen Wall. He shares the grave with eight other soldiers.

Edward's 'Soldiers' Effects' record shows that his war gratuity went to his aunt Mrs. Margaret Melling.

Edward was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

CWGC

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HOLLINGSHEAD William, Private. 14392.

2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment.
Died of Wounds 5 November 1915, aged 37.

William's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
William's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2016

William Hollingshead was born on 23 August 1878 (GRO reference for him has not been found) to John and MaryAnn Hollingshead (nee Gough). His parents had married in the September quarter of 1866 in the Shoreditch registration district.

The 1871 census records the family living at Fox Court, St. Andrews, Holborn, London. William's 26 year old father was a 'Printer's labourer'. His mother, aged 24, was recorded as Marian rather than Mary Ann. Also there on census night were William's 3 year old sister Catherine, his 9 months old brother James and his 60 year old maternal grandmother, from Ireland, also Catherine.

WILLIAM HOLLINGSHEAD AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Catherine Margaret Born: 1868 Mile End 
James Born: 1870 Stepney 
HenryBorn: 1874 Mile End 
MarianBorn: 1876 London 
WilliamBorn: 1878 Clerkenwell
Died: 5 November 1915 Epsom
 
GeorgeBorn: 3 December1880 HolbornMarried Daisy Georgina Stone on Christmas Day 1905

In the 1881 census the family was living at 11 Wilson Place, (Grays Inn Lane) Marylebone. William's father was working as a 'Printer'. William's first school was Grays Inn Road School. When William, aged 8, started at Laystall Street School in Camden on 25 October 1886, his address was recorded as 2 Lanes Court. When William's brother George started at the same school on 5 March 1889, the family address was recorded as 18 Bakers Row. George left school on 12 May 1890 due to illness.

The 1891 census recorded William and his family as living in Bakers Row, Clerkenwell. William's father and brothers James and Henry were all described as 'Labourers'. William left Laystall Street School later that year on 5 October. The school was renamed Rosebery Avenue School in 1899.

William's mother died in 1896 aged 49. Later that year on 4 October, William's 51 year old widowed father married 43 year old widow Mary Loones.

In 1901 the family lived at 13 St. Helena Place, Finsbury. William was a porter in a warehouse.

I have been unable to find William in the 1911 census. His father and stepmother were living at 22 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell.

William went to France on 2 June 1915 to join the 2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment. The battalion was in the 5th Brigade, 2nd Division and fought in the Battle of Loos which raged between 25 September to 4 November 1915. Between 25 September and 13 November the Battalion lost 126 men killed in action and a further 24 died of wounds. It seems likely that William was wounded in the Battle of Loos.

William died of his wounds in Horton War Hospital on 5 November 1915 and was buried in grave K644 in Epsom Cemetery on 11 November. He shares his grave with eight other soldiers and is remembered with them on the CWGC Screen Wall.

William was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

CWGC

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HOPKINS Ernest, Sapper. 35829.

68th Field Company Royal Engineers (RE).
Died 17 May 1916 aged 24.

Ernest Hopkins was born in Croydon on 22 June 1891 (GRO reference: Sep 1891 Croydon 2a 226), to Robert Walter and Elizabeth Hopkins (nee Steer). His parents had married in the March quarter of 1886 in the Woolwich registration district. The birth of his older brother Robert William was registered in the December quarter of 1886 also in the Woolwich district and his sister Maude Elizabeth was registered there in 1888.

Ernest's family had been living in three rooms at 357 Brighton Road, Croydon when he was born. Also living separately, in one room at the same address, was widow Harriet Sales.

In the 1901 census the family lived at 65 Exeter Road, Croydon, Surrey. Ernest's father was a 'Journeyman Carpenter', and his brother Robert William, aged 14, was an 'Errand Boy'. His sister Maude Elizabeth was aged 13.

Ernest was educated at Brighton Road School, Croydon and Hook Road School, Epsom.

On 19 July 1910, following a recommendation from the G.P.O., Ernest was taken on as a porter by the London Brighton and South Coast Railway Company at their Merton station and started earning 14 shillings a week.

Only Ernest and his brother Robert were living with their parents at 'Hungerford House', 70 Princess Road, Croydon, when the 1911 census was taken. His 45 year old father stated that he was working as a 'house carpenter' for the L.C.C., Robert was a 'fruiterer's assistant' and Ernest was working as a 'railway porter' for the LB and SC Railway Company. He also noted that he and his 49 year old wife had been married for 25 years and that all their three children were still alive. Ernest's sister Maude was working as a domestic servant in Holmwood, Surrey. Aged 34, she later married Arthur Potts on 3 June 1922.

The LB and SC Railway Company transferred Ernest to their Crystal Palace railway station on 27 May 1911and gave him a 2 shilling increase in pay, but Ernest resigned from his porter's job on 16 June 1911. Presumably he then started training as a carpenter.

Ernest attested at Kingston on 6 April 1915 aged 24 years, as Sapper 35829, in the 68th Field Company RE. He was 5 feet 6½ inches tall, weighed 128 lbs, had a chest measurement of 35½ inches with an expansion of 2½ inches, and he had perfect 6/6 sight in both eyes. He had 6 vaccination marks, and an operation scar on the right side of his abdomen. His occupation was stated as a 'Carpenter improver'. He had lived at 5 New Cottages, Ewell and at 25 Chessington Road. His next of kin was his father Robert Walter Hopkins.

Ernest was not married and had made an allotment of pay to his mother Elizabeth Hopkins, 25 Chessington Road, of 1/6d (1 shilling and 6 pence) 'Per diem'.

The 68th Field Company RE was part of the 11th Division and had fought in the Gallipoli campaign. They were withdrawn from Gallipoli to Egypt on 21 December 1915.

Ernest Hopkins died of dysentery in No. 31 General Hospital, Port Said, Egypt on 17 May 1916 and is buried in Port Said War Memorial Cemetery. Port Said, at the northern outlet of the Suez Canal, was an important hospital centre during the Great War.

His father wrote to the war office on 27 August 1916, from 25 Chessington Road, Ewell. Full text follows:

Dear Sir,
     Re the late No. 35829 Sapper E. Hopkins 68th Field Coy R.E. who died of Dysentery in 31 General Hospital, Port Said, Egypt on 17 May 16.
     Being the next of kin to the late soldier I am asking for the effects, if any have been sent home that belonged to him. A few little things not of much value he may have had, and I should be pleased to have anything that belonged to him.
                    Yours Respectfully
                              R.W.Hopkins
On 7 July 1916 the following effects were sent to his father: Wallet, Razor strop, Belt, Tobacco pouch, ID disc, Cap badge, Photos and Letters.

Ernest's father, Robert wrote to the war office on 14 July 1919 advising that they were moving to 10 Beaconsfield Road, Croydon.

In 1919 Ernest's brother Robert William was living at 235 May Avenue, Ontario, Canada, and his sister Maude Elizabeth was living at 7 Queen's Elm Square, Chelsea.

Ernest's father acknowledged receipt of his son's memorial scroll on 21 March 1920, his 1914-1915 Star on 19 May 1920 and his BWM and Victory medal 20 October 1921.

Ernest is commemorated on the memorial at All Saints Church, Ewell and in the book 'CROYDON and THE GREAT WAR' published in 1920 by the Libraries committee of the corporation of Croydon.

AS

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HOPKINSON Hugh James Pearson, Lieutenant.

67th Field Company, Royal Engineers.
Died of wounds 6 November 1915, aged 23.

Hugh Hopkinson
Hugh Hopkinson
Image Courtesy of Yorkshire Rugby Union Football Club

Hugh James Pearson Hopkinson, the eldest son of Frederick Thomas and Lilian Martha Hopkinson (nee Thomas), was born in 1892 about 9 miles east of Plymouth in the small village of Ivybridge, Devon (GRO reference: Sept 1892 Plympton St. Mary 5b 212).

His parents had married in 1891 in the Haverfordwest registration district and had been living at 20 Weston Road, Ermington, Devon before Hugh's birth. His father Frederick was a civil engineer and had since 1889, while living at Milford Haven South Wales, been a member of The Institution of Civil Engineers (M.I.C.E). He was employed by S. Pearson and Son, and later became a Director of the company.

Hugh's brother Cecil was born on 3 July 1898 in Glamorgan, Wales and by 31 March 1901 the family appeared in the Irish census as living at 28 St. John Street, New Ross Urban, Wexford, Ireland. They employed a cook and a nurse/domestic servant.

Aged 18, Hugh and his father were living at Ivy Mount, Sutton on Hull, Yorkshire when the 1911 census was taken. The house had 12 rooms including a kitchen but excluding the scullery, landing, lobby, closet and bathroom. Hugh and his father were both working as civil engineers for Dock & Railway Construction and employed a cook and housemaid. Hugh's mother was away visiting the Warlow family in Kingswood, Cotham Park, Bristol. It was noted by Mr. Warlow that Lilian had been married for 20 years and had had 2 children. Hugh's brother was a boarder pupil at The Berrystead, North Street, Oundle, Northants.

On 29 August 1914 Hugh was gazetted as a temporary Second Lieutenant of the 67th Field Coy, Royal Engineers, while his father served the Ministry of Munitions and Air Board.

Hugh, like his father, was a member of the Concrete Institution, which was an institution for structural engineers, architects etc. Even while Hugh was stationed in Brompton Barracks, Chatham in January 1915, his paper concerning ferro-concrete warehouses in Hull Joint Docks was being printed and discussed by John E.S. Bodger, the honorary secretary of the Yorkshire Association of Students of the Institution of Civil Engineers.

The 67th Field Coy, Royal Engineers became part of the 11th (Northern) Division in February 1915 and on 12 June 1915, the Division received orders to prepare for service at Gallipoli. On 30 June the Division sailed on the Aquitania and Empress of Britain, arriving at Imbros (Kephalos), the largest island of Turkey. They then sailed on the evening of 6 August 1915 and landed at Suvla Bay, Gallipoli. The following is from The Long, Long Trail website:
Conditions on Gallipoli defy description. The terrain and close fighting did not allow for the dead to be buried. Flies and other vermin flourished in the heat, which caused epidemic sickness. In October 1915, winter storms caused much damage and human hardship... . Of the 213,000 British casualties on Gallipoli, 145,000 were due to sickness; chief causes being dysentery, diarrhoea, and enteric fever.
The last major Gallipoli battle was the Battle of Scimitar Hill and attack on Hill 60 (21 August). The Despatch of General Sir Ian Hamilton, Commander in Chief of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force was printed in the Third Supplement to the London Gazette of 6 January 1916. The Despatch dealt with the Gallipoli fighting of August 1915:
"From this date (29 August 1915) onwards up to the date of my departure on October 17th the flow of munitions and drafts fell away. Sickness, the legacy of a desperately trying summer, took heavy toll of the survivors of so many arduous conflicts. No longer was there any question of operations on the grand scale, but with such troops it was difficult to be downhearted. All ranks were cheerful; all remained confident that, so long as they stuck to their guns, their country would stick to them, and see them victoriously through the last and greatest of the crusades."
The following information comes from Hugh's Army Form B.103 'Casualty Form--Active Service' found amongst his surviving service record papers:
06-08-15Admitted to 25th Casualty Clearing Station Imbros "PWO" (Pyrexia of unknown origin)
06-08-15Discharged to duty
12-08-15Admitted to H.S. Eurypedes
20-08-15Transferred from sick Convoy to 19th General Hospital Enteritis
24-08-15Discharged to light duty
24-08-15Joined 11th Infantry Base Depot
30-08-15Embarked per H.S. Karoo Class "B
03-09-15Admitted to No.15 Stationary Hospital, Mudros, Stomatitis
11-09-15To rest camp
21-09-15Rejoined 67th Field Coy
05-11-15From 35th Field Ambulance admitted to 26 CCS
06-11-15Died of Wounds. G.S.W. Abdomen

Hugh was aged 23 when he died of wounds on 6 November 1915. His body was one of the first to be buried in the Hill 10 Cemetery in Suvla Bay, Turkey.

On 9 November 1915 Hugh's mother received a telegram at St. James's Palace Chambers, 22 Ryder Street, S.W. informing her that 2Lieut H.J.P. Hopkinson R.E. Died of Wounds 6th Nov Lord Kitchener expresses his sympathy.

As Hugh was unmarried and intestate administration of Hugh's probate, with his effects being valued at £516 8 shillings, was granted to his father Frederick on 24 March.

On 10 December 1915 Messrs Cox and Co. Shipping Agents returned Hugh's effects, consisting of:
1 Monocle. (Broken); 2 Letters; 1 French 10 Centimes coin; 1 Egyptian ½ Piastre.
Hugh's parents, Frederick and Lilian, appeared on the 1918 Electoral Register as living at 68 Whitehall Court, Westminster, but when Hugh's father applied for his son's 1915 Star, British War medal and Victory medal on 30 December 1918, he asked for them to be sent to 10 Victoria Street, Westminster, although Garbrand Hall was also written on Hugh's medal card.

Hugh James Pearson Hopkinson medal card
Hugh James Pearson Hopkinson medal card
Image courtesy of Ancestry.co.uk (Link opens in a new window)
Ancestry Logo

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission later recorded:
HOPKINSON, Lt. Hugh James Pearson. 67th Field Coy. Royal Engineers. Died of wounds 6th Nov. 1915. Age 23. Son of F. T. Hopkinson, M.I.C.E., and Lilian M. Hopkinson, of Garbrand Hall, Ewell, Surrey. III. E. 3.
However his medal card records that he was "Killed in Action on 5 November 1915".

Hugh is remembered on the Sutton and Wawne Roll of Honour.

Frederick and Lilian and their younger son Cecil, who was in the 60th Rifles, had moved in to Garbrand Hall in Ewell after buying it from David Willis on 18 February 1919. After moving in they commissioned a memorial oak bench to be made and along the back had carved the following:
"IN HONOURED MEMORY OF THE MEN OF EWELL WHO SACRIFICED THEIR LIVES IN THE GREAT WAR 1914-1918".
They also attached a brass plate in honour of their dear son, which read
"THIS SEAT WAS GIVEN BY MR & MRS HOPKINSON OF GARBRAND HALL IN LOVING MEMORY OF THEIR ELDEST SON HUGH J. P. HOPKINSON. LT. R. E. WHO FELL AT GALLIPOLI NOVEMBER 1915"
Hopkinson bench plaque
Hopkinson bench plaque
Image courtesy of Hazel Ballan ©2014

It is believed that the WW1 memorial bench was originally placed in St. Mary's churchyard in Ewell.

Many years later, the bench that Hugh's parents had dedicated to him and the fallen men of Ewell was vandalised. Fortunately a local resident, Mrs. Barbara Meineck, who was working at Ewell Castle School, rescued it. On 15 August 2014 she wrote:
"Over 30 years ago I was working at Ewell Castle School in the village. One day, crossing the courtyard on my way back to class, I saw a large wooden seat being loaded into a van. I noticed it because it was in a bad state of repair and had been vandalised with a saw or knife. The woodwork tech told me that he had been given it to repair in the workshop but felt it was beyond repair and he was taking it to the dump. I saw the inscription and the brass plaque on the front of the seat and was sure it should be saved and I knew the man who could do it! My husband Frank. Consequently it was delivered to my house and soon the repairs were done as Frank loved his hobby of carpentry and D.I.Y.

It has been a wonderful seat - the family and many friends have sat on it and talked about its history and how we saved it.

Now on this centenary remembrance of the beginning of the Great War I feel I must return it to its rightful place in Ewell - much as it holds special memories of my late husband. I have loved having it in my garden all these years."
The bench has since been returned to the grounds of the demolished Garbrand Hall and is on display in Bourne Hall Museum.

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HOWARD Arthur, Gunner. 1941.

3rd/2nd London Brigade Royal Garrison Artillery.
Transferred to the Labour Corps, 692508.
Died 17 July 1919, aged 37.

Arthur's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Arthur's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2017

The CWGC and GRO both record Arthur's age when he died as 37, which would make his birth year c1881. In addition, the 1911 census records his age as 30 (therefore born c1881) and his place of birth as Islington. However, I have been unable to find any definitive records for Arthur in birth records or the 1891 and 1901 censuses.

Arthur, a waiter, aged 29, married Ursula Armstrong, aged 21, on 27 June 1909 in Holy Trinity Church, Stroud Green, Haringey, whilst living at 13 Albert Road. Arthur's father George worked as a 'Tradesman'.

The 1911 census records that Arthur, aged 30, was born in Islington and that Ursula, aged 23, was born in Newcastle. They were living at 221 Hornsey Road, Islington and had a three months old daughter, Ursula Christina. Arthur worked as a waiter on a railway dining car.

Very little information could be found for Arthur: No service or pension record, no medal card and he is not in the Soldiers Died CD. The only record found was his 'Soldiers' Effects' record, which stated 'W.G. not admissible under 6 months service'.

Arthur died in Horton War Hospital, Epsom on 17 July 1919. He was buried on 21 July in grave K654 in Epsom Cemetery, and is commemorated there on the Screen Wall. He shares the grave with three other soldiers.

Arthur's widow, living at 2 Claremont Square, Pentonville, was granted probate on 13 October 1919 in the sum of £16 6s.

The CWGC states that he was the
Husband of Ursula Howard, of 2 Claremont Square, Pentonville Road, Islington, London. Native of London.
CWGC

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HOWSAM Robert Franklin, 700275. Private.

2nd Battalion Canadian Mounted Rifles.
Died 25 December 1917, aged 27.


Robert's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Robert's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2017

Robert Franklin Howsam was born on 29 September 1893 in Woodroyd, Manitoba, Canada, the son of Joseph and Eliza Howsam (nee Epton). His parents had married on 4 March 1874.

The 1901 Canadian census records Robert's father as a 49 year old farmer. His mother was also aged 49 and both parents had been born in England. Along with Robert, six siblings are recorded.

ROBERT FRANKLIN HOWSAM AND HIS SIBLINGS
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Edward FestusBorn: 2 July 1876 Ontario
Died: 1956
 
EvaBorn: 18 July 1878 Ontario
Died: 1964
 
AliceBorn: 19 June 1880 Ontario
Died: 1951
 
OliveBorn: 24 July 1884 Manitoba 
AdaBorn: 1 Jan 1887 Manitoba 
Robert FranklinBorn: 29 September 1890 Manitoba Died: 25 December 1917 EpsomArmy Service records show incorrectly that he was born 29 September 1893
JosephineBorn: 29 December 1897 Manitoba 

Robert attested in Winnipeg on 14 December 1915. He stated that he was living in Stonewall, Manitoba, that he was a farmer and that his father was his next-of-kin. Robert was 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighed 140 lbs, had a fair complexion, brown eyes and light brown hair. He had a chest measurement of 36½ inches with an expansion of 3½ inches and his religion was Methodist.

Robert embarked from Canada aboard SS Olympic on 28 June 1916, disembarked in England on 6 July and went to France on 28 August 1916 to serve with the 2nd Battalion Canadian Mounted Rifles.

On 4 October 1917 Robert was treated by the 9th Canadian Field Ambulance for 'Furunculosis Neck'. He was evacuated to England and on 17 October was admitted to Albert Hall Military Hospital, Nottingham, suffering with 'Carbuncle Back of Head Operation'. He was transferred to the Canadian Convalescent Hospital at Woodcote Park, Epsom on 2 November and then to the Manor War Hospital, Epsom on 1 December.

Robert died from pneumonia on 25 December 1917 and was buried on 29 December in grave K705 in Epsom Cemetery where he is commemorated on the Screen Wall. He is also commemorated on the Stonewall, Manitoba War Memorial.

In the early 1920s Robert's British War medal, Victory medal, Plaque and Scroll were sent to his father and his Canadian Memorial Cross was sent to his mother.

CWGC

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HUMPHREY Henry Arthur, Private. 16108.

1st Battalion Devon Regiment.
Died 11 November 1917, aged 34.


Henry's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Henry's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2016

Henry Arthur Humphrey was born in Islington on 26 August 1882 (GRO reference: Dec 1882 Islington 1b 323) the second child of George Joshua and Eleanor Humphrey (nee Kingshott). Henry's parents had married on 2 August 1879 in St. Mary's Church, Islington. Henry was baptised there on 25 February 1883.

Henry's father, a widower, had previously married Julia Richardson in 1874. Julia gave birth to a daughter, Julia Emma Humphrey, on 8 March 1874 but died on 12 March. Hence Henry had a half sister.

HENRY ARTHUR HUMPHREY: HIS SIBLINGS AND HALF SIBLING
NameBorn - DiedNotes
Julia Emma Richardson
(Half sibling)
Born: 1874
Died: 1956
Married John Henry Childs 1897
George HenryBorn: 1880
Died:
Served in the Royal Artillery
Henry ArthurBorn: 1882 Islington
Died: 11 November 1917 Epsom
 
Grace AliceBorn: 1885
Died: 1947
Married Frederick Herbert Dorrington 1911.
Killed in action 21 June 1917
John Greenfield Born: 1887
Died:
 
Rose Ellen Born: 1889
Died: 1983
 
Charles Peel Born: 1893
Died:
 

In 1881, the year before Henry was born, Henry's parents were living at 155 Shepperton Road, Islington. Henry's father was a 'Brazier and Brass Finisher'. Half sister Julia was aged 7 and brother George was aged 6 months.

In the 1891 census the family lived at 30 Pickering Street Dwellings. Henry's 46 year old father worked as a 'Copper Brazier'. His mother was also aged 46. He had two brothers, George aged 10 and John aged 3, and two sisters, Grace aged 6 and Rose aged 1. Also living there was Henry's grandmother Rose Kingshott.

In 1901 the family lived at 389 New North Road, Islington. Both Henry and his father were 'Coppersmiths', whilst his brother George was a 'Carriers Clerk'. The 1907 Electoral Register describes their accommodation as 'first and second floors'. Henry's father George was aged 67 when he died in 1908.

The 1911 census finds the family living at 248 New North Road. Henry's mother, now a widow, was the head of the family. She had had six children, all still living. Henry was still working as a 'Coppersmith'; his brother John was a 'Coppersmith's Clerk, whilst sister Rose was a 'Fur Binder' and brother Charles was a 'Van Guard'.

Henry attested on 12 April 1915 in Holloway, London, into the Devonshire Regiment and was given service number 16108. He gave his address as 69 Albany Cottages, Popham Street, Islington, his age as 32, his occupation as metal worker and stated that he was unmarried and that his mother, Eleanor Humphrey was his next-of-kin. Henry was 5 feet 4½ inches tall, had a fully expanded chest measurement of 36½ inches, light brown eyes and dark brown hair. He was initially assigned to the 3rd Battalion Devonshire Regiment at Exeter for training, and after training he went to France on 27 July 1915 with the 1st Battalion.

Henry only spent about 6 months in France before being returned to England on 3 March 1916. Diagnosed as suffering from dementia praecox, he was a patient at Dykebar War Hospital, Paisley when on 2 July 1916 he was discharged from the army, being no longer fit for military service, and was awarded a pension of 20s (£1) per week. Quoting from a medical board:
Origin not known. France. Says he has been depressed for about 4 months with the thought that his father died in an asylum - has not been in the firing line - says he is suffering for his sins and wrong doing - is morose - stands staring vacantly for long periods - at other times is restless - is confused - apathetic wet and dirty in habit - very silent - stuporose - never speaks voluntarily - can scarcely be induced to answer questions - pays no attention to his surroundings. Result of active service - stress of campaign - permanent - total incapacity.
Henry was admitted to the Long Grove Asylum in Epsom on 7 July 1917 where he died on 11 November 1917 from dysentery and ulcerative colitis. He was buried in grave K649 in Epsom Cemetery on 17 November, a grave he shares with eight other soldiers. He and the other eight soldiers are remembered there on the Screen Wall.

Henry was awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.

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HUNTER Archibald Chalmers, Private. 27485.

15th Battalion Canadian Infantry.
Died 24 June 1918, aged 32.


Archibald's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Archibald's inscription on the CWGC memorial Epsom.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2017

Archibald Chalmers Hunter, the son of Archibald Allan and Jane Hunter was born in Edinburgh, Scotland on 26 June 1885. His parents had married in 1884.

In 1891 the family was living at 16 Edina Place, Edinburgh. Archibald's father, a postman, was aged 32, his mother was aged 24 and he had two siblings, Robert Donaldson aged 4 and William Allan aged 4 months.

In the 1901 census the family was living at 35 Almond Bank Terrace Edinburgh. Archibald, aged 15, was a plumber's apprentice and he had another sibling John Chalmers aged 6.

Archibald sailed from Liverpool aboard S.S. Erie, arriving at St. John, New Brunswick, Canada on 23 March 1908.

Archibald attested in Valcartier, Canada on 19 September 1914. His brother Robert had also attested into the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force the previous day. Archibald stated that he was not married, worked as a plumber and that his mother, who lived at 2 Keir Street, Edinburgh, was his next-of-kin. He also stated that he had previously served with the 5th and 9th Battalions Royal Scots (both territorial army units). Archibald was 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighed 130lbs and had a chest measurement of 35½ inches, a ruddy complexion, blue eyes and fair hair. He had one vaccination mark, a scar on his right cheek and his religion was Presbyterian.

Archibald's service record tells us that in April 1915 he was gassed whilst serving near Ypres. The first use of poison gas on the Western Front occurred on 22 April 1915 when the Germans launched an attack on the Ypres salient, releasing chlorine gas from thousands of cylinders. The 15th Battalion Canadian Infantry was in trenches at St. Julien near Ypres just to the right of where the gas was released onto French Moroccan and Algerian troops, who fled in panic leaving a gap in the lines that was filled by Canadian troops. On 24 April the Germans made another gas attack, this time directly on Archibald's battalion front. It is presumed that Archibald received his gas wound during this attack. Whilst gas was often fatal, it could also leave its victims with breathing problems for the rest of their lives, which is no doubt what happened to Archibald.

The following is an extract from the 15th Battalion War Diary, April 1915:
22 April. O.C. visited line of trenches during night. Work carried on, Parapet strengthened. 5pm. Enemy attacked French troops on our left front using poisonous gas, also shelled St. Julien. Enemy shelled trenches all night. Weather fine and warm.

23 April. Enemy shelled trenches and St. Julien. Weather fine and warm.

24 April. Enemy attacked our line of trenches. Heavy casualties. Weather fine and warm.

27 April. Enemy shelled village and trenches. 7.30 p.m. Battalion relieved from trenches and marched to transport.

Total casualties for April 22nd - 23rd - 24th: Killed. 1 officer 16 other ranks
Wounded. 5 officers 19 other ranks.
Missing. 11 officers 639 other ranks.
Totals. 17 officers 674 other ranks.
Weather warm and fine.
On 18 July 1915 Archibald was admitted to No. 3 General Hospital, Le Treport suffering from N.Y.D. (Not Yet Diagnosed) and was returned to duty on 27 July. On 2 August he was again admitted to No. 3 General Hospital, Le Treport suffering from N.Y.D. Then on 11 August at the 2nd General Hospital, Havre he was diagnosed as suffering from 'effects irritants (gas)'. He was returned to duty on 5 September.

In January 1916 Archibald was transferred to England due to his previous exposure to gas and bronchitis and was transferred between various units. He was admitted to Moore Barracks, Shorncliffe, Hospital on 10 January 1917 suffering from asthma and was discharged to duty on 28 January. He returned to France and on 28 September 1917 he was taken on the strength of the 8th Canadian Area Employment Company.

On 21 February 1918 he was sentenced to 14 days Field Punishment No. 1 for drunkenness. Archibald was admitted to No. 6 Casualty Clearing Station on 1 April 1918 suffering with I.C.T (Inflammation of Connective Tissue) Left Hand. Then of 6 April he was admitted to No. 2 Australian General Hospital suffering with 'whitlow Rt Thumb'. By 11 April he had returned to England and was a patient at the 1st Southern General Hospital, Birmingham. He was then admitted to Woodcote Park Canadian Convalescent Hospital on 5 June and transferred to the Manor War Hospital, Epsom on 20 June suffering from influenza. He was declared to be dangerously ill on 24 June and died the same day, the official cause of death being pneumonia.

Archibald was buried on 28 June 1918 in grave K746 in Epsom Cemetery where he is commemorated on the Screen Wall.

The Scottish National Probate Index records:
HUNTER, Archibald Chalmers, Plumber, sometime in Edinburgh, thereafter in Toronto, Pte., 8th Canadian Area Emp. Coy., died 24 June 1918, at The Manor, County of London War Hospital, Epsom, testate. Confirmation granted at Edinburgh, 31 January, to Jane Donaldson or Hunter, wife of Archibald Allen Hunter, 2 Keir Street, Edinburgh, his mother, Universal Legatory and as such Executrix nominate under Will or Deed, undated, and recorded in Court Books of Commissariot of Edinburgh, 30 January 1919. Value of Estate, £95. 0s. 8d.
Archibald's 1915 Star, British War medal, Victory medal, Plaque and Scroll, and Canadian Memorial Cross were sent to his parents in Edinburgh in 1920.

CWGC

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HUNTER William Edward, Gunner. 195383.

321st Siege Battery Royal Garrison Artillery.
Killed in Action 28 March 1918, aged 39.

Wiiliam's headstone in the Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez
Wiiliam's headstone in the Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2012

William Edward Hunter was born in Maidenhead, Berkshire in 1879 (GRO Reference: Mar 1879 Cookham 2c 437) to Edward and Elizabeth Alice Hunter (nee Harman). William's parents had married in the June quarter of 1876 in the Cookham registration district.

The 1881 census recorded the family living in Queen Street, Maidenhead. William's 32 year old father had been born in Exeter, Devon, and worked as a clerk to a bookseller. His mother was aged 30, and he had an older brother, Arthur Edgar aged 3. The family employed a domestic servant and housed a lodger.

In 1891 the family lived at 4, York Terrace, Queen Street, and William's father now described himself as a bookseller. Another brother had arrived, Frederick Howe aged 6. William's other brothers, Arthur Edgar aged 13 and Gilbert Henry aged 9, were living with their aunt, Ellen Harman, in Bray, Berkshire.

By 1901 William's family was living at 25, York Road, Maidenhead, but William now aged 22 had left his parents' home and was a lodger at 76, Station Road, Epsom, the home of 50 year old widow Elizabeth Wayte. William earned his living as a 'corn factor's assistant'.

In 1911 William was a boarder at Clatford House, South Street, Epsom, the home of Albert James King, a licensed lay reader. William earned his living as a manager in the corn trade.

As William's service record has not survived we do not know when he went to France, but on the date that he died, 28 March 1918, the Germans were seven days into their major offensive the 'Kaiserschlacht'. This was the battle that they hoped would bring them victory before the Americans arrived in force to assist the Allies.

The Siege Batteries of the Royal Garrison Artillery operated behind the front line and fired large shells from heavy howitzers in high trajectory, plunging fire. Siege batteries were often used to destroy enemy artillery and strong points behind enemy lines. But of course they themselves then became the targets of enemy artillery and it is most likely that William was killed by enemy shelling.

William is buried in grave XVII. J. 3. in Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez, along with over 7,650 other fallen servicemen.

William was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The CWGC record states that William was the son of Edward and Elizabeth Alice Hunter of 25, York Road, Maidenhead. So who had his name added to the Ashley Road memorial? Perhaps a landlady, or a fellow boarder, or maybe a fiancé?

EP

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HUSSEY Charles Francis, Lieutenant.

1st/5th Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment.
Killed in Action 5 October 1918, aged 19.

Charles' headstone in Bellicourt British Cemetery
Charles' headstone in Bellicourt British Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013

Charles Francis Hussey was born on 15 January 1899 in Kensington (GRO reference: Mar 1899 Kensington 1a 109) to Charles Cochrane and Lorna May Hussey (nee Bennett). His parents married in the September quarter of 1896 in the Kensington registration district. Charles was an only child.

The 1901 census records the family living at 22, Kensington Park Road, Kensington. Charles' father was a 33 year old solicitor working for the Great Western Railway Company. His mother was aged 28 and Charles was aged 2. The family employed 3 servants.

Charles attended Upland House School between 1909 and 1912. After leaving Upland House he attended Charterhouse School where he joined the Officer Training Corps (OTC). He later studied at the University of London and was a member of their OTC.

On 19 December 1916, at the age of 17 years and 334 days, Charles attested at Paddington into the East Surrey Regiment and was given service number 35400. He declared that he was unmarried, a scholar and lived at 31, St Mary's Mansions, Paddington, W. 2., and was immediately placed on the Army reserve.

On 12 March 1917 he was medically examined and declared fit to serve in the Army. He was 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighed 136lbs, had a chest measurement of between 32 and 36 inches, and had perfect vision in both eyes. His religion was Church of England.

However, he was not mobilised until 6 September 1917, when he was accepted for admission to No. 13 Officer Cadet Battalion at Newmarket. He was discharged as a Private soldier on 17 December 1917 and Gazetted with a temporary commission as 2nd Lieutenant on 18 January 1918.

Charles embarked from Southampton on 18 April 1918 arriving at Le Havre on 19 April and joined his unit on 24 April. He attended a bombing course between June 6 and June 30. On 17 September 1918 his unit, the 1st/5th Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment joined the 75th Brigade, 25th Division in the St. Riquier area.

By October the Great War was heading towards its end, the Germans were being pushed back on all fronts. The enormously strong German defences known as the Hindenburg Line were being broken through and large numbers of German prisoners were being taken, although at the cost of the lives of many men.

Charles lost his life in the Battle of Beaurevoir on 5 October 1918. The University of London OTC Roll of Honour records that Charles was killed leading his men in an attack at Beaurevoir. In addition to Charles, ten men from his unit lost their lives that day.

On 28 October 1918 Messrs Cox and Co, 16, Charing Cross Road, London, shipping agents, received Charles' effects, for onward transmission to his father. They consisted of:
  • 1 Loose leaf notebook
  • 1 Photo case and photo
  • 1 Cigarette case
  • 1 Wrist Identity Disc
  • 1 Note Wallet
  • 1 Advance Book
  • Letters
Charles' father was his next of kin, and could be contacted via the Solicitors Office G.W. Railway, Paddington Station, W2. As Charles died intestate his father, as next of kin, took out letters of administration on 6 January 1919, and was granted probate in the sum of £473 14s 8d.

On 27 March 1919 Charles's father received a letter from the War Graves Registration and Enquiries Office telling him that his son was buried in a grave about 200 yards East of Mont St. Martin, South of Gouy, which is North West of St. Quentin. He was further told that the grave had been marked by a durable wooden cross with an inscription bearing full particulars.

But on 13 November 1919 he received another letter from the War Graves Registration and Enquiries Office which read:
Since seeing you a few days ago with regard to the grave of your son Second Lieutenant C.F. Hussey, Gloucester Regiment attd. 1/5th Battn. I have received a report from the Graves Registration Unit in France stating that owing to the necessity for collecting together all those who are buried in isolated graves for re-burial in cemeteries, where the graves can be properly cared for, your son's body has been removed and buried in Bellicourt British Cemetery, North of St. Quentin.
     The new grave has been duly marked with a cross bearing all particulars and registered in this office.
     The re-burial has been carefully and reverently carried out.

Thus, Charles was one of the thousands whose bodies were removed from their original resting place to be concentrated into fewer and larger burial grounds and is now buried in grave I. L. 17. Bellicourt British Cemetery.

Charles was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The CWGC states that he was the:
Son of Mr. C.C. and Mrs. L.M. Hussey, of Rotherhill, Fittleworth, Sussex. Native of London.
UHS

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HYDE George, Driver. 87098.

No. 5 "C" Reserve Brigade. Royal Field Artillery.
Died 27 December 1917, aged 41.


Geroge Hyde's headstone in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert ©2008

George Hyde was born in Epsom in 1873 (GRO reference: Mar 1873 Epsom 2a 18) to George Barthram and Matilda Hyde (nee Parker). His parents had married in the December quarter of 1865 in the Cookham registration district.

GEORGE HYDE AND HIS SIBLINGS
Name Born - Died
Alfred Edward Born: 1868 Maidenhead
Matilda Born: 1870 Maidenhead
George Born: 1873 Epsom
Died: 27 December 1917
Joseph John Born: 1875 Epsom
Charles Frederick Born: 1877 Epsom
Harriet Louisa Born: 1880 Epsom
Henry Born: 1881 Cheam
Rosina Born: 1884 Cheam

In the 1881 census the family was living at Cheam Common. George's father was a 45 year old boot maker from Maidenhead. His mother Matilda was aged 41 and from Whitechapel. Eight-year-old George had 5 siblings, Alfred aged 12, Matilda aged 10, Joseph aged 6, Charles aged 4 and Harriet Louisa aged 1.

By the 1891 census they had moved to 47 Victoria Place, Epsom. George was a farm labourer, and his brother Joseph, now 16, was a labourer in a brickworks. Two more siblings had arrived, Henry aged 10 and Rosina aged 7.

By the 1901 census the family had moved to 42 Victoria Place, but only George's parents and siblings Joseph and Rosina are shown as living there.

George first joined the army on 26 November 1891, aged 18 years and 7 months, attesting at Woolwich into the Royal Artillery, signing on for 7 years with the colours and 5 years in the reserve. He was 5 feet 4 inches tall, weighed 126 lbs, and had a chest measurement of 34 inches expanding to 36 inches. He had a fresh complexion with brown eyes, brown hair, and a scar on his lower lip. He was medically examined and declared physically fit. His religion was Church of England.

George was sent to India on 22 September 1893 and spent the next 10 years and 76 days soldiering in India. He fought in the North West Frontier of India Campaign 1897-98 and was awarded the India medal 1895 with three clasps i. Punjab frontier 1897-98, ii. Samana 1897 and iii. Tirah 1897-98. Whilst on duty on 22 April 1898 he suffered an injury to his left leg causing a contusion.

On 21 November 1893 he was granted good conduct pay at 1d per day, but this was forfeited on 17 August 1896, reason unspecified. Good conduct pay was restored on 17 August 1897, and on 17 February 1899 his good conduct pay was raised to 2d per day. He was discharged from the army on 9 December 1903 having served 12 years and 19 days with the colours.

George married Louisa Smith in 1904 in the Camberwell registration district. Their son Edwin Llewellyn G. was born in Epsom on 17 November 1906 and their daughter Doris Matilda on 11 March 1909 in Camberwell. Her birth was around the time when George's 70 year old mother Matilda died at her home 42 Victoria Place, Epsom. She was buried on 20 March 1909 in grave A531 in Epsom Cemetery. After her death, George's father moved in with George's brother Joseph, who lived at 10 Garden Cottages, Epsom. Their 74-year-old father George died at home and was buried on 6 September 1910 in grave A534 in Epsom Cemetery.

George's pension records show they had three children, Edwin, Doris and Lionel Charles who was born on Valentine's Day 1914.

On 25 August 1914, only 21 days after the start of the Great War, at the age of 41 years and 180 days, George again attested into the Royal Field Artillery, but this time at Kingston-Upon-Thames. He was by then 5 feet 4 ½ inches tall, weighed 154 lbs and had a chest measurement of 37 inches with an expansion of 3 inches. His eyes were still recorded as brown, but his hair as black. His religion was still Church of England. He had acquired some tattoos, and his arms were covered with flags, ladies and the arms of England.

On 27 August 1914 George was posted to 112 Heavy Battery Royal Garrison Artillery, and went to France on 5 October 1914. (The War Diary of the 112 Heavy Battery RGA Sept 1914 to Oct 1915 is held at the National Archives WO 95/287). On 26 January 1915 he was admitted to hospital, reason unknown, but returned to his unit on 10 February 1915. He was again admitted to hospital on 1 November 1915 suffering from bronchitis and was invalided back to England on 3 November 1915 aboard 'SS Munich'. George was posted to the 5 Reserve Brigade RFA, and was finally discharged from the army on 11 August 1916 as being no longer physically fit for war service under Para 392 XVI Kings Regulations, and was awarded the Silver War Badge number 283290 'For King and Empire Services Rendered'. He was also awarded the 1914 Star, British War Medal and the Victory medal. His medal card states that on 24 November 1919 Mrs Hyde, who lived at 18 Leith Road, Epsom, applied 'for clasp in respect of the late G. Hyde'.

George died on 27 December 1917 and was buried in Epsom Cemetery plot F 327 on New Year's Day 1918. Although he had been a civilian for over a year and four months he is commemorated by the CWGC and has a commission headstone. His entry in the St. Martin's Roll of Honour states that:
'He died at home on the 27th December 1917, of illness contracted on war service in France'.
EP SM

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