WENDOVER 1914-1918 WAR MEMORIAL
War 1 & 2 - Roll of Honour with detailed information
Compiled and copyright © John Tanner 2008
Wendover War Memorial is to be found at Manor Waste, Wendover and takes
the form of a Market Cross on aplinth with three stone steps surrounded
by concrete bollards and chain. There are 57 names for World War 1 and
22 for World War 2 although only World War 1 have been transcribed and
rsearched so far. The World War 2 additions cost £19 10s 0d but
had to be chnaged becuase they had been sitred wrongly and missed out
Arthur Frank SHRIMPTON, the laterations cost a further £11 2s
6d and the work was carried out in June 1948. The original memorial
was unveiled by the Marchioness of Lincolnshire June 1992 and the alterations
for World War 2 by Air Commodore J F Titmuss 10th November 1946. The
orginal memorial cost £278 raised by public subscription. A further
memorial to World War 1 is to be found within St Mary's Church in the
form of a metal plaque, those who appear on only the memorial or the
plaque are denoted here.
Copyright © John Tanner 2008
25676, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards. Youngest son of Sir Thomas
and Lady Barlow of Boswells and London. Born in Bloomsbury and educated
at Marlborough and New College Oxford, awarded MA degree. Director
of Barlow and Jones, Cotton Spinners and Manufacturers, Bolton.
Age 32. Enlisted Bolton. Died in hospital at Rouen 18th January
1917 from blood poisoning contracted while suffering from trench
foot. Throughout December 1916 and January 1917 the battalion was
billeted in the area of Combles, Meulte and Bronfay Camp between
spells in the front-line around Bouleaux Wood. Buried in St. Sever
Cemetery Extension Rouen; Block 0, Plot 6, Row 0, Grave I
9975, 2nd Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Born Wendover. Enlisted Aylesbury 1914 Lived in Clay Lane. Killed
in action 13th November 1916 near Beaumont Hamel. On 13th November
1916 the battalion's objective was the Yellow Line (the German second
line). Leading elements of 5th Infantry Brigade captured the German
front line with little resistance. The battalion, coming up in support,
suffered some casualties from its own barrage and during heavy bombing
of Munich Trench. After crossing the Green Line the leading waves
appear to nave lost direction. They wheeled northwards in the mist
and fell into a communication trench, known as Lager Alley, running
east and west between the Green and Yellow Lines. This mistake was
discovered, and the Yellow Line was entered by disorganised elements
from, all companies. There was considerable fighting here, in Munich
Trench, and in Lager Alley. This resulted in the forward parties
being all but surrounded and a withdrawal, covered by bombers and
Lewis gunners, was carried out to the Green Line, which was consolidated.
The battalion lost one officer killed, two died of wounds, five
wounded and three missing. The casualties amongst the other ranks
were ten killed, one hundred and forty-nine wounded, and seventy-six
missing. The battalion was in action from 5.45 am on the 13th until
the night of the 15th/16th November. Originally buried in Redan
Ridge Cemetery Number 3, Beaumont Hamel. His grave was destroyed
by German shellfire in later fighting and he is now commemorated
on Special Memorial B7 in that cemetery.
Frank E Birch] Private 19223 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment.
Son of Thomas Birch of Wellwick Cottages, Age 25. Born at Great
Missenden. Enlisted at Bedford in November 1914, while living at
Croxley Green. Killed in action 21st September 1918 near Basse Boulogne.
On 20th September the battalion failed in a dawn attack north-east
from the Bellicourt road against outposts of the Hindenburg Line.
The attack was resumed at 3pm on the 21st, however, the planned
two hour barrage failed out for the fire of C/IIO battery. 5^th
Infantry Brigade, I8th Division, took Dog Trench, Mill Lane, Pot
Trench, Duncan Avenue and Duncan Post by 3-.45pm. In addition some
150-200 prisoners were taken. Proceeded to France 26th July 1915.
Military Medal in July 1917, while serving as a battalion signaller
in the Battle of Messines. Buried in Unicorn Cemetery Vendhuile;
Plot 3, How A, Grave 5.
26400 5th Battalion. Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
served as Private 7649 2nd Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry and as Private 26400 6th Battalion Oxfordshire and
Buckinghamshire Light Infantry). Son
of Mrs Harriet Birch of 4 Tring Road. Age 28. Born
in Ellesborough. Enlisted
at Oxford in 1914. Killed
in action 23rd March 1918 near Flavy. At 6.05am on 2Ist March the
battalion moved into the Battle Zone to meet the German attack.
They reached the Zone at II. 30am, having suffered heavy casualties
from shellfire. They took up positions on the Benay-Essigny road,
in the old second line. At night this line was abandoned and all
troops retired behind the canal line at Flavy. At 5.30am on the
22nd the battalion moved up from Petit Detroit to hold the canal
bank. This line was lost early on the morning of the 23rd. B Company
sent up to reinforce near Flavy station was entirely overwhelmed.
At 11.30am. the battalion retired before the enemy, fighting all
the way to Riez de Cugny. An intense machine-gun barrage v/as put
down by the Germans. They finally dug-in in a strong point near
the village. Since the 2Ist the battalion had lost 18 officers and
about 350 other ranks killed, wounded and missing. A
report in “The Wendover Magazine” of October 1917 states
that Birch had just come through his 15th action safely. Commemorated
on the Pozieres Memorial; Panels 50-51. (Possibly buried in Annois
2674-I3 2nd/4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light
Infantry. (Also served as Private 20435 2nd/Ist Buckinghamshire
Battalion, Oxfordsnire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry). Light
Infantry. Son of Thomas and Laura Bishop of 'West on Turville. .
Husband of Esther Bishop of Tring Road. Born at Weston Turville.
Worked as a gardener.Age 36. Enlisted at Aylesbury in 1916. Died
of wounds I5th April 1918 at Aire-sur-la-Lys. On 12th April the
battalion took and held positions on the Robecq-Calonne road and
at Bacquerolles Farm. At 7.30am, in thick fog, the enemy attacked
to the battalion's left, requiring them to form a defensive flank.
The troops on the left flank then withdrew and C Company had to
carry out a local counter-attack to drive the Germans from a group
of houses. On the 14th, at 6.30am, C Company drove the enemy from
& further group of houses. Subsequently, in the belief that
some houses were not being& held by the enemy, a battle patrol,
consisting of a platoon of A Company was pushed out. After a short
advance the patrol came under heavy rifle and machine-gun fire.
There was an exchange of fire and the patrol withdrew, covered by
Lewis-gun fire. The battalion lost one officer wounded, three other
ranks killed, twenty-two wounded and one missing. Buried
in Aire Communal Cemetery; Plot 4, Row F, Grave 10.
Private 265709 A Company, Ist/i4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry. (Also served as Private 2365 Ist/Ist Buckinghamshire
Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.) Son
of Mary Ann Bonharn and the late Thomas Bonham of Aylesbury Road
. Age 21. Nicknamed Skier.Killed
in action 27th August 1917 near St. Julien. Enlisted at Aylesbury.
He went to France with the 1st Buckinghamshire Battalion, on 30
March 1915. Served with them in the Ploegsteert Wood area and in
front of Hebuterne. Commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial; Panels
96 to 98. “The Wendover Magazine” of August
1915 included the following:
Arthur Bonham, an old member of the Boys’ Brigade, has written
and interesting letter from the front, from which we have an extract:-
'We have not been in the trenches for about a fortnight no, but
up till then we had fours days in and four out. It was a fairly
quiet part of the line that we were in, though of course at times
it was rather warm, such as rapid firing, and a few shells flying
over, but we soon got used to them We used to hear at hone that
the Germans couldn’t shoot, but can’t they? I wouldn’t
give them half a chance if a I knew it. At present we are billeted
at a large village some miles behind the firing line, doing some
training, and it is very trying , as the weather is so hot, but
I dare say we shall have it still hotter before long. The woods
and country back here are looking grand, but as you get nearer the
firing line the villages and towns are battered about dreadful,
and at some of them there are churches in ruins which at one time
must have looked splendid and quite beautiful. We all have the same
wish as you, that it was all over and that we could get back home
again, but I am afraid that that will not be for some time yet.
It is quite amusing trying to make the French people understand
different things we want, but in most shops they are picking up
English wonderful, and can quite understand, but that is chiefly
where troops have been billeted.’”
fought with the battalion in the initial attacks on Pozieres in
the second half of July 1916. On the afternoon of the I4th August
the battalion was ordered to retake Skyline Trench, to the east
of Pozieres. It was decided that C Company would carry out a bombing,
attack, supported by a party from A Company supporting their right
flank. This operation was successful and C and D Companies occupied
Skyline Trench and Sixth Avenue. The battalion was then subjected
to heavy shell fire which destroyed the trenches and continued until
their relief on the evening of the I5th. On the I5th, while serving
in A Company, Bonham suffered a gunshot wound in the right leg.
He was evacuated to the 1st/2nd South Midland Field Ambulance, at
Warloy-Baillon, and went from there to Number 3 Canadian Stationary
Hospital, at Rouen, before going to England.
1.55pm on the 27th August 1917 the 1st/4th Battalion moved forward
from dug-outs in the canal bank at Reigersberg Camp. They moved
up to their assembly positions in the Triangle via Infantry route
4. The assembly trenches were reached at 4pm with very few casualties
despite having to pass through a heavy barrage. The battalion dug-in
on this position, with its HQ in a blockhouse north-east of Mon
du Hibou. At midnight they took over the frontline.
her son's death Mrs Bonham received a letter from an unknown officer
saying that he had died painlessly, and that his body had been taken
from. the battlefield for burial.
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 included the following: “Arthur
Bonham also fell in action with the Territorials a few days later
– August 27th. He was one of the original “Terriers”,
having joined up on Sept. 7, 1914, and having gone out to France
first on 30 March 1915. Badly wounded on August 16, 1916, he was
sent to Hospital in Hackney, and then to re-cuperate in Ireland.
Early this year he was sent out again to re-join his Battalion..
Second-Leiut. F W Caldwell wrote a most sympathetic letter to his
widowed mother to tell her of her great loss, and to her it is a
bitter blow, for sympathising friends will recall that she has lost
husband, one daughter , and a son within a few years. Arthur, before
the war, had been employed by the late Mr R White.”
108061, D Battery, 11th Brigade, Royal .Field Artillery Son of Mr
and Mrs James Bowden of 6 Old Ford Cottages, Scrubwood. Age 23 Born
in Wendover. Enlisted at Aylesbury 4th September 1915. Carter. Killed
in action 24th September 1917 near Pilckem. D/11 Battery come into
the line on the 17th September. The batteries of the brigade were
distributed through the following map squares: C 1 a and c, C 7
a and b and 3 12 a and b, to the east-north-east of Pilckem. From
1.50am to 5am on the 24th the batteries, and Brigade HO at C I d
6 9, were subjected to heavy gas-shelling suffering one gunner killed.
Buried in Bluet Farm Cemetery; Plot I, Row F, Grave 51
Wendover Magazine of November 1917 included the following:
“News came through during the month of the deaths of Private
Jessie Slade and Gunner Archie Bowden…. Archie Bowden was
one of Jessie’s schoolmates at Wendover school, whence his
daily walk took him to Scrubwood. He also joined up before being
called up, and being fond of horses was drafted to the RFA. At the
Baptist Sunday School and at his work for Messers. Rance he had
always been quiet and obliging, and the shock to his parents (Mr
and Mrs James Bowden) and family when the news came of his death
on Sept. 204th was great.”
3/8118 3rd Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry,
attached 2nd Battalion. Only son of Mrs Pearce of Tring. Road. Born
in Tring. Enlisted at Oxford. Died
of wounds 10th October 1914 at La Cour de Soupir. Buried in Soupir
Churchyard; Row B, Grave 7.
1st Mate SS Bishopstone.
Son of Benjamin and the late Sarah Buckingham. Husband of Kate Buckingham,
nee Wyatt, of "Elthorpe", Nightingale Road. Born in Great
Kirnble. Age 41. Killed
by enemy action 4th September 1917 in the English Channel.. The
B'ishopstone was a vessel of 2,513 tons, owned by Swansea Steamers
Ltd. It was registered for home trade and was plying a regular cargo
run from Portsmouth to I.e Havre. On the 4th September she was sunk
by a submarine in the English Channel, while on passage from Le
Havre (50º8’ N, 0º57’ W). Commemorated on the Mercantile
Marine Memorial, Tower Hill; Panel 3.
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 included the following: “Another
‘Ben’, but possibly not so well-known, for he had spent
thirty years at sea; and met a sailor’s death by drowning,
his vessel being sunk by a Hun pirate. Born at Kimble, he married
the daughter of Mr George Wyatt, who shares the home in Nightingale
Road, where the widow and little child live. He joined the Mercantile
Marine service as a youth, and since the war had twice before been
on board vessels sunk by the U boats, to meet his death with a third
sea and him in death….. ‘this now his rest for ever.’”
1lth Battalion Queens Royal West Surrey Regiment (Also served as
Major with I5th Battalion Durham Light Infantry. )
son of the Rev. Sherard Beaumont Burnaby, vicar of Hampstead, and
Jane Mary 3'urnaby. Born in Hampstead on. the 5th May 1874. Educated
at Uppingham. Engaged in ranching in British Columbia from 1893
to 1899. In 1906 married Evelyn Violet, youngest daughter of the
late Major-General C H Smith. One son and two daughters. Ran a game
farming business at his home, Rocketer, near Great Missenden. Age
in action 8th September 1916 near Delville Wood.
I8th January 1900 enlisted in the 1st Wiltshire Company, 1st Battalion
Imperial Yeomanry. Embarked for South Africa on the 1st March 1900.
Commissioned as Lieutenant 1st March 1900. Promoted Captain in June
of that year and mentioned in despatches. In the London Gazette
of 31st October 1902 was awarded the DSO " in recognition of
services during operations in. South Africa. " On 26th September
1914 took up appointment as Major in the 15th Battalion Durham Light
Infantry at Halton Park. Moved with the battalion to Maidenhead
in April I9I5« On 5th July 1915 assumed command of the 1lth Lambeth
Battalion of the Queens. Took the battalion to France on the 5th
the 8th September 1916 the battalion was in billets at Meault. He
went forward with his four Company Commanders and was killed while
reconnoitring the front line trenches. Buried in Danzig Alley Cemetery,
Mametz; Plot I, Row D, Grave 51.
Wendover Magazine of October 1916 included the following: “If
the worth of a man, apart from any professional honours he may have
attained, can be estimated by the general esteem in which he is
held, the Lieut-Col H B Burnaby, DSO, stands in no need of any obituary
panegyric. On all sides, from every class of the community, the
deepest and sincerest sorrow was expressed when the sad new circulated
through the village that he had died out in France.
Sept 8th, while he was inspecting his battalion of the East Surrey
Regiment, he was struck be a shell, and died almost immediately
afterwards. So passed away one of the best and most gallant of men.
Beaumont Burnaby was the youngest some of the Rev S Beaumont Burnaby,
Vicar of Hampstead. He was born on May 5th 1874, and so was a little
over 42 on the day of his death.
being educated at Uppingham, he went to British Columbia at the
age of 19, and was engaged in ranching there until the outbreak
of the Boer War. Returning to England, he at once enlisted as a
trooper in the Imperial Yeomanry, and was sent out to the Front.
A born soldier – the phrase is now a hackneyed one, but it
was essentially true of Colonel Burnaby – he quickly made
his way. In March 1901, he was given his commission , and three
months later he was gazetted Captain.
work he did in the South African War was very distinguished –
far more distinguished, the writer has been told, then even the
high military honours conferred on him denoted. He was mentioned
in despatches, and was decorated with the Distinguished Service
was badly wounded in the war, and we remember how, he laughingly
told us that at few days before the outbreak of the present war
the last piece of shrapnel came out of his chin while he was shaving.
‘I shall just have time to go and collect some more,’
to England, he set about the founding of the Rocketter Game Farm,
starting in the smallest way, and, by dint of great perseverance
and industry, building up what was undoubtedly one of the best businesses
of its kind in England. He married in 1906 the youngest daughter
of Major-General C H Smith, CB.
was a very familiar figure in Wendover. Everybody knew him and everybody
liked him, and this universal popularity was not, as it so often
is, a mark of a weak character, but a testimony to his fine qualities.
He was always courteous, always considerate; he loved a joke, and
his laughter was infectious; he had a simplicity and directness
which were charming, and he had a joy of life which showed itself,
not only in his engaging smile and laughter, but in the very way
he walked and carried himself.
the war broke out, he was over forty, and though he sent in his
papers, the War Office did not believe at that time that they would
require officers of his age. This lack of military employment fretted
him, but, anxious to do what he could, he took charge of the guard
at the Chiltern Hills Water Works and of the Wendover Company of
Special Constabulary. By some natural instinct, he was a leader
of men, and he had the art of getting the most out of those under
him.. The writer, by no means an impressionable person, knows that
he did a lot of things for Colonel Burnaby in the Special Constabulary
simply because he seemed so pleased and grateful, and was so ready
to praise whatever was done.
six weeks after the war started, when the 21st Division came down
to Halton, tired of appealing to the War Office, he applied direct
to the Headquarters at Aylesbury, and was at once given his company
in the Durham Light Infantry. At this time he knew practically nothing
about drill, and we are writing this article on the table where,
with the aid of matches and much laughter, it was explained to him
how fours were formed. On the following day he was to begin his
new military duties by marching his company up from Aylesbury.
all things military came natural to him. During the training at
Halton he was at first stationed under canvass in the lower camp
– in that dreadful swamp of mud and water – he seemed
the most cheerful person in the whole place.
January 1915 he went to Maidenhead, and we have a letter in front
of us in which he declares that he is sick of what he calls Red
Tape and office work, and expresses his longing to get out to the
June 1915 he was appointed Colonel of a battalion of the East Surrey
Regiment. We saw several of the Durham Light Infantry the day he
left. In their gruff North Country way they cursed and swore at
the Powers-that-be for taking from them an officer they so dearly
loved. We are told that some of the men cried when he left, so great
an impression had his fine and engaging qualities made on them.
last time we saw him was at Marylebone Station. He was still wearing
his old Captain’s uniform., though he had already been appointed
to his Lieutenant-Colonelcy. We spoke and shook hands in the hurry
of getting out of and getting into a train, and that unknowingly
was our last glimpse of the tall, graceful, splendidly-built figure
of Lieutenant-Colonel Hugo Burnaby.
leaves behind him a widow, a son to carry on the name of Burnaby
and the traditions associated with that name, and two daughters.
It would be futile to express here any of the ordinary sentiments
of regret and sorrow, but if universal sympathy can assuage the
bitterness of such a loss, then perhaps the knowledge of how much
he is missed for miles round his home at Wendover Dene may be of
some comfort to his widow."
1st Battalion Hampshire Regiment (Also served as Private 13495 9th
Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.) Born
in Wendover. Lived in Back Street. Enlisted at Oxford in 1914- Went
to France 2nd June 1915. Killed in action 1st July 1916 near Beaumont
Hamel. Commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial; Pier 7, Face C.
1st July the battalion was in support to the 1st Battalion East
Lancashire Regiment. At 7.30am. the latter attacked from the British
front line on Redan Ridge north-west of Beaumont Hamel. They came
under heavy machine-gun fire as soon as they left their trenches..
Ten minutes later the 1st Hampshires left their trenches. A, B and
half of C Company formed the first wave. The remainder of C Company
were to assault a German trench on the left flank and D Company
were in reserve* As soon as they left the trenches heavy machine-gun
fire was bought on them from all directions. Casualties totalled
26 officers, all of those engaged, and 559 other ranks.
Corporal 205163 1st/1st Royal Bucks. Hussars, also served as 935.
Son of Thomas and Elizabeth Carter of High Street. Brother of Thomas.
Born in Wendover. Enlisted at Aylesbury in 1913. Served with the
Regiment at Gallipoli from August to December 1915 when it returned
to Egypt following the evacuation.. Age 20. Died
of wounds 4th June 1917 at Kantara.
3Ist May the Regiment was encamped in a branch gully off the Wadi
Guzze, near El Shellal. Four bombs were dropped on 1st Troop,, A
Squadron. Fourteen men, thirteen from A Squadron and one from. C,
were wounded, one dying within a few minutes. The remaining men
were evacuated to to. 24 General Hospital at Kantara. Eighteen horses
were killed by the bombs and the same number wounded.. One further
man died of wounds in, hospital that evening. Buried in Kantara
War Memorial Cemetery; Row C, Grave 73.
following letters were published in the Bucks Herald on
7th June 1917:
Mr and Mrs Carter
feel I must write a line of sympathy to the nearest and dearest
of Corpl.. Gordon Carter (935) Bucks Yeo. who died last night at
11.20pm. He had been badly wounded in the back by part of a bomb
dropped from a Taube, but of course everything had been done for
him that could be.
when looking for two men reported as dangerously ill I came across
him in the next tent and after sitting with him a little time, I
told him there were others I had to see who were very bad in the
next tent. I did not want to leave him, but as I had been sent for,
I told him I had to go but would come back again,. Although he was
obviously in pain and wanted me to stay, he said "Yes go and
comfort them, do not worry about me." He was a brave lad and
when I came back I sat with him. He said it was such a long time
for me to sit with him. He was so nice, and spoke so well of another
chaplain further up the line, I think, who used to come and see
don't worry about him. He only wanted sleep and rest. I prayed that
he might have this; and then after his medicine, I told him, “Now
you must go to sleep.” He smiled and said, “Oh no, Sir,
not before about two hours,” and then he settled himself quietly
and quite soon I left him resting, breathing quickly but asleep.
But in a little over two hours – it was then just 9 o'clock
(lights out) – he fell asleep and entered into that other
rest which always remains for the children of God.
he rest in peace and may God comfort your hearts. I hope I have
not written too much to distress you. But he was so nice a fellow
that I loved him, and wished I could have done more for him.
J Bennet CF
It will be such a long time before get this
you get this, but if you don't you will get my prayers.
June 1 917
Mrs Carter - Before this reaches you, you will have heard the sad
new/s of the death of your son, No. 935 SS Corpl. G Carter and I
am writing to express my sympathy for you all in your great loss.
Your son was wounded on May 3Ist by a piece of a bomb dropped from
an enemy aeroplane, and was badly wounded in the back. It happened
in camp, so luckily, the doctors were able to attend to the wounded
in a very few minutes after the explosion. Your son was removed
to hospital at once, and he was taken down the line as far as the
hospital on the canal, where I understand he went under a serious
operation. At present we have not heard the full particulars, except
from the hospital staff, saying your son died in the hospital after
a serious operation. We hope for more details. He died on the evening
of June 4th.
boy's death is a great loss to us all, as he was such a fine man,
and, soldier, and above all things, always a gentleman. I feel his
death myself very much; as I was in the same troop in England and
on the Peninsula, and when I received my commission I was given
the Troop which your son was in, and has been in ever since. He
was always happy, bright and cheerful, and was most popular with
all ranks. His loss is a great blow to us all.
few days before he was wounded he told me there was a chance that
his brother was corning out on a boat which was sunk. I hope for
your sakes that this has been found to be incorrect, as you have
enough to bear with the loss of one son. I will try to find out
further particulars, and will then write to you again.
am, yours sincerely
Archer 2nd Lieut.
B Squadron Royal Bucks Hussars
Mr and Mrs Carter - It is with great regret (I am writing on behalf
of the 'Wendover boys) we hear of dear Gordon's death, caused by
a bomb. No words of mine can express our heartfelt, sympathy in
your sad bereavement, for ''Gordon was held in high esteem by all
ranks. Not only was he a first-class sportsman, but a soldier who
aid his duty as such-as only a Bucks man can.
sad fatality occurred on the morning of: May 3Ist. An aeroplane
came over our camp and dropped four bombss all of which fell on
the 1st Troop of A Squad doing serious damage to horses and men,
the same wounding Gordon. I arrived on the scene about half-an-hour
afterwards as we were some distance from A Squad. By that time Gordon
was dressed and gone so could not see him.
a week before he came over to B Squad to tell me about 'Tom. Little
did any of us think that this sad occurrence would rob us of one
of the best pals a man could wish for, and all of us feel we have
lost a brother, I need not dwell on this sad subject any longer,
as we all know how you must feel, only we thought it our duty to
offer you our deepest sympathy, hoping it will comfort you to know
he did his duty and died a hero.
am yours sincerely
photograph of Gordon Carter’s grave was sent to his mother
by Private Albert Bishop 1st/7th Essex Regt., of Pound Street.
895th MT Company, Army Service Corps. Son of Thomas and Elizabeth
Carter of High Street. Brother of Gordon Geoffrey. Born in Wendover.
Enlisted at Aylesbury.Died at sea 15th April 1917 in the Cyclades.
The 895th Mechanical Transport Company ASC (No 1 Mechanical Transport
Tractor Company) was formed at Deir-el-Belah, Egypt, on 13th April
19T7. On 15th April the SS Arcadian, a troopship of 6,939 tons sailing
from Alexandria to Salonika, was sunk by a submarine off the island
of Siphano in the Aegean. The ship was on the second leg of a voyage
to Marseille and bringing troops out from Britain. Two hundred and
seventy-one lives were lost in the sinking: 35 crew and 236 passengers.
Carter's body was recovered and his parents were told that he had
been buried in St George's cemetery on the island of Antiparos which
lies to the east of Siphano. The CWGC records that three special
memorials in Syra new British Cemetery bear the names of casualties
buried on Antiparos and Skarpanto whose graves had been washed away.
Commemorated on Special Memorial Grave'2 in Syra New British Cemetery.
2nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers (Also served in 16th Battalion). Son
of Mr and Mrs James Deering of Chandos Street. Born in Wendover.
Enlisted at Mill Hill. Age 19. Died of wounds 1st August 1915 on
Malta. Landed at Gallipoli 16th June 1915. On the 23rd July 1915
the battalion sailed for the Gallipoli Peninsula, having been at
rest on Lemnos. They landed at Gully Beach on the 24th and went
into bivouacs. On the 26th they were bombed from the air, suffering
four men wounded. At 6pm on the 28th they took over the front line
of Essex Knoll and Worcester Flat. On the 29th they lost one man
Killed and four wounded. Buried in Pieta Military Cemetery, Malta;
Plot B, Row 4, Grave 1.
Wendover Magazine of August 1915 included the following: “Bert
Deering, an old CLB boy, who joined the Royal Fusiliers, has been
fighting with his Regiment on the Gallipoli Peninsula. In a card
we have received he announces that hew has been badly wounded while
charging the Turks, and is in hospital in Malta. He says he is getting
on well and hopes to be sent home on the next hospital ship.”
1st Battalion Wiltshire Regiment (Also served as Private 8112 3rd
Bn. attd. 2nd Bn. Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.)
Son of Walter and Sarah Deering of 1 Clay Lane, Born in Wendover.
Enlisted at Aylesbury. Age 21. Nicknamed Pednor. Killed
in action 6th Kay 1916 near La Targette.
the 6th May 1916 the battalion was holding the La Targette sector
below Vimy Ridge. The day began with the Stokes mortar being registered
on the German line. Lt. Brown was killed by a sniper. At 7.57pm
the enemy sprang a mine between the old and new craters at the top
of Birkin Trench. The battalion put a party into the valley between
the craters and prevented enfilade fire being brought on the position.
Two men were buried by the mine explosion. The near lip of the crater
was consolidated and a sap was dug to connect it with that blown
on the 3rd. One man was killed and one wounded in this operation.
At 8.13pm a British mine was blown to the north east of the top
of Grange Trench. The explosion formed a crescent shaped crater
measuring 45 by 80 feet and 60 feet deep. A Lewis gun was then moved
up and enfiladed an enemy working party. A further sap was dug from
Grange Trench to the crater's lip. A third sap was dug to the south
with a 'Y-fork in it and incorporating loop-hole plates. Other casualties
one NCO and one man killed, three wounded. Buried in Ecoivres Military
Cemetery, Mont St. Eloi; Plot 1, Row J, Grave 20
Wendover Magazine of July 1916 included the following:
give below two copies of letters received by the parents of Will
Fantham and George Deering, whose deaths on May 8 we chronicled
in our last issue. It is not generally known that George had previously
been wounded in the head whilst with the Oxford and Bucks, and on
returning had been transferred to the Wiltshires.
15th May 1916
a few lines to tell you how very sorry I am that your son has been
was in my platoon, and I am extremely sorry to lose him.
died as bravely as anyone could, when we were taking a German mine
crater, being shot by a German machine gun, and his death was instantaneous.
has been buried in a cemetery at Mont St Eloi, and of course there
is a cross on his grave with his name and Regiment.
accept my deepest sympathy.
G D Brown"
266125 2nd/Ist Buckinghamshire Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry. Son of William and Martha Dell of Wellwick Cottages
and, latterly, High Street Great Missenden. Enlisted at Aylesbury.
Age 21. Killed in action I9th July 1916 near Laventie.
the I9th July the battalion was holding the front line from Bond
Street to Picantin Avenue, opposite the German, salient known as
the Sugar Loaf. The British bombardment started at11am. By 5.30pm
nearly 100 men had been killed or wounded, out of rifle strength
of 20 officers and 622 other ranks. At 5.40pm the remaining 120
men of A and D Companies filed out into no-mans land by way of Rhondda
Sap. They formed up and lay down in four waves under German machine-gun
fire. When, at 6pm, they rose up to assault the German line they
were mowed down by machine-gun fire. C Company, carrying engineer
stores for consolidation, attempted to cross no-mans land but were
also cut down at 6.10pm. Orders for the renewal of the attack were
cancelled and B Company, with 80 survivors from the other companies,
took over the front, line. Casualties were as follows; four officers
killed, seven wounded and two missing; sixty-two other ranks killed,
one hundred and eighty wounded and sixty-five missing. Commemorated
on tne Loos Memorial; Panels 63-85.
Wendover Magazine of September 1916 included the following:
many friends whom Mr and Mrs Dell, of Wellwick, have in this part
of the County will deeply sympathize with them in their anxiety
respecting the fate of their eldest son Cecil, Lance-Corporal in
the 0. and B. Since he left the trenches on July 19 with his battalion
to attack the enemy not a scrap of reliable evidence can be obtained
respecting him, but there is a faint chance that he may be a prisoner
in Belgium, for it is said he was one of the few to get through
the wire and reach the German lines. George Wells has made enquiries,
but can only say that he heard he was wounded.
Elliott (now wounded and in England) wrote to :Mrs Dell, and said
he was close to Cecil when they climbed the parapet to advance.
Cecil shouted "What oh. Will. How did you like the rum?"
the reason being, as Will quaintly adds, "as we had none."
Will saw him no more, as he was wounded himself in the stomach arid
thigh at the German "wire", and, after dressing his wounds
in a shell hole, took about two hours to crawl 300 yards to safety,
when he was placed in a shell-proof dug-out.
have been made in all directions respecting Cecil, and it is said
that he and Lance-Corporal Stevens were seen to "bomb"
their way to the German trenches. Another story says two were taken
prisoners. If so these may be the two.
Commanding Officer wrote as follows to Mrs Dell:-
is with the greatest respect that I send you my deep sympathy in
your anxiety about your son. As you know, I thought the world of
your boy (Will) now in the First Battalion, and during the four
months I have been with this Battalion I soon found out the worth
of your other son (Cecil) too. I would give anything to be able
to send you news of him. But since July 19 there is none. As soon
as any news arrives I will write to you at once, but I am bound
to tell you that the chances are out faint that we shall get any
sincerely George W Bowyer
8th Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment (Also served as Private 265710
Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, 2/1st Bucks Battalion.
Son of James and Sarah Dorrell of London Road. Enlisted at Aylesbury
in 191 if Nicknamed Kruger. Age 20. Died
of wounds 26th August 1918 at Daours.
1am on the 24th of August, zero hour, the barrage opened and the
battalion moved forward. They halted on the road in W 29 a arid
c, east of Albert, for 20 minutes. The barrage then lifted and moved
forward at 100 yards every four minutes, halting on the line X 25
b 7 6 to X 19 b 5 7 for 10 minutes, and then moving on to the objective;
La Boiselle village. The German barrage replied at 1.06am, with
the majority of shells falling over. At 5.15am a message, timed
4.30am was received from the commander of B Company to say that
he was on the objective and in touch with the other companies. D
Company reported that they were on the first objective in support
of the other companies, who had over-shot the objective. C Company
had reached the objective but then been held up on the craters in
X20 a 7 3. At 10am a message was received from the commander of
A Company, timed 5.30am, saying that he was on position at X 20
a 5 5 but also reported Germans in the craters. Touch was now made
with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers on the left. Considerable machine
gun fire was reported to be coming from north of La Boiselle and
the craters. There was also some firing up Avoca Valley . At 5pm
platoons from A and C Companies attacked the La Boiselle craters
under cover of a Stokes mortar bombardment. The objective was consolidated
by 9pm and 200 prisoners had been taken. Later a patrol from C Company
established a post at X 20 b 9 I. At 3am on the 25th they were relieved
by the 8th Battalion East Surrey Regiment and went to Square Trench
in map square E 7. The battalion remained here until 8prn on the
26th v/hen they moved up to clear Trones .Wood. The battalion’s
casualties throughout August were 79 killed, 225 wounded, 9 died
of wounds, 10 missing 8 wounded and missing. Buried in Daours Communal
Cemetery Extension; Plot 3, Row F, Grave 45.
560602 Royal Engineers Signal Service X Corps HQ Signal Company,
serving in VII Corps area around Nurlu. Also served as Private (T)3971
Royal Engineers. Son of Alfred and Sarah Drake of York Buildings,
Tring Road. Born in Wendover, Lived at Hampstead. Enlisted Kilbuirn.
Husband of Annie Drake of Pimlico. Killed accidentally I6th January
1918 at Guyencourt-Saulcourt. Killed when the cellar in which he
was sleeping collapsed in on him. Buried in Saulcourt Churchyard
Extension; Row B, Grave 6.
his death Drake's commanding officer wrote to his parents. An extract
from the letter was published in the Bucks Herald on 2nd
always regarded him more as a friend than an NCO, and I nave never
met a man more to be relied on. He was buried in a little cemetery
quite near us, the service being carried out by the Assistant Chaplain.
I will get a cross made as soon as possible.
4th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment, also served 3rd Battalion
Son of James and Emma Edmonds. Husband of Eva Edmonds of Clay Lane.
Born Wendover. Enlisted Aylesbury. Worked in the King's Head Brewery.
Nicknamed Tubby . Age 39. Killed in action 9th October 1917 near
battalion relieved the 2nd Battalion South Wales Borderers in the
front line at 3.30am on the 8th. W and X Companies were in the front
line, the latter astride the Ypres-Staden railway, in the old German
trenches, Bear and Leopard. Y and Z Companies were in support, with'
battalion HQ in Spring Farm. (U 22 c 1 1) Patrols were sent out
to the Broembeek. At 5.30 in the evening battalion HO moved to a
Blockhouse in Bear Trench, at U I7 c 8 1, Z Company moved up from
Martins Mill to shell holes behind X Company in Leopard Trench.
Tapes were laid out in front of the battalion. At 2.30am on the
9th they formed up on the tapes; Wand X Companies forming the first
wave, and Y and Z the second. One hour later the Newfoundland Regiment
formed up 150 yards in the rear. It had been raining continuously
for 24 hours. The barrage began at 5.20arn and advanced at 100 yards
every six minutes. The Broembeek was crossed and the first wave
gained its objectives, while maintaining touch with the Coldstream.
Guards on the left and the 2nd Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers on
the right. At 7am battalion HO moved forward to Namur Crossing (U
18 b 2 9). The barrage halted for one hour and then moved on at
100 yards every eight minutes. The second objective was taken with
the 1st Guards Brigade on the left and the Royal Fusiliers on the
right. Then the Newfoundland Regiment moved through and took the
third objective. The battalion had captured 6 officers and 200 other
ranks, with two machine-guns. They had lost 2 officers a
line-guns. They had lost 2 officers and twenty other ranks killed,
five officers and one hundred and seven other ranks wounded and
forty other ranks wounded. Commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial;
Panels 75 to 77
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 included the following:
the official news has not come through, there is little doubt but
that poor Geo. Edmonds has paid the great sacrifice, for some of
his personal belongings have been returned to Mrs Edmonds. His bother
Alf is back in England – severe shell-shock.
264th Railway Company Royal Engineers (Also served as Private 5878
2nd/5th Battalion Suffolk Regiment.) Son of Joseph and Elizabeth
Fantham of London Road. Husband of Isabella Fantham of Aylesbury.
Enlisted at Aylesbury in the autumn of 1916. Worked as a blacksmith.
Nicknamed Hoboy. Age 40. Uncle of William George Fantham. Died of
wounds 30th August 1917 at Boulogne. (39 General Hospital).
the 9th August the company continued work on a gun spur at Noordhofswijk
in map square H 6 b. On the 10th work began on extension of the
Great Midland line from C 25 a 4 7. Work continued on this until
the l6th. On this day they were shelled suffering one milled and
sixteen wounded. Two of the wounded men died the next day. Buried
in Boulogne Eastern Cemetery; Plot 7, Row I, Grave 22. Commemorated
on the family grave in Wendover Churchyard.
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 included the following:
Harry received severe injuries whilst with a working party of the
Royal Engineers in France, and lingered for some days in the 134th
General Hospital, Boulogne, before expiring. His wife had several
very kind letters from the Matron, but there was little hope of
his recovery, though his death was painless. He was 38 years old,
and leaves a young wife and two little children. He joined the army
in October last year, and was at first attached to the Suffolk Regiment.
He was a well known “Oddfellow”, and in civil life had
worked for a considerable time as a farrier for Mr Tom Carter, and
more recently at Mr J S Holland’s Brewery.
1st/5th Leicestershire Regiment Son of William and Jane Fantham
of The Pack Horse, Tring Road. Born in Wendover . Enlisted at Loughborough.
Age 22. Killed in action 8th May 1916 near Neuville St. Vaast. Landed
at Havre with battalion 28th February 1915.
At 1.45pm on
the 29th April the battalion paraded on the Duffin-Perin road and
took over the front line at Neuville St. Vaast using all four companies.
They remained in the line until 9pm on the 8th May, when they were
relieved by the King's Royal Rifle Corps. While not providing fatigue
parties the off duty troops rested in caves beneath Neuville St.
on the Thiepval Memorial; Pier and Face 2C and 3A. Commemorated
on the family grave in Wendover churchyard
Wendover Magazine of July 1916 included the following:
give below copies of two letters received by the parents of Will
Fantham and George Deering, whose deaths on May 8 we chronicled
in our last issue........
15th May 1916
MR AND MRS FANTHAM,
take the privilege of witing these few lines to you over your son,
William Fantham (No. 2162). No doubt you have been informed before
now that he was killed in action on the night of May 8 whilst performing
one of the most dangerous duties that falls to our lot, that is,
of mining fatigue. He vwas at work down a sap with other comrades
when the Germans blew it in on them, burying him and another.
can assure you that all was done to get them out, but it was impossible
to save them. What makes it seem harder is that they would have
been out of it in about half an hour.
is a sad los to us, being very popular with all on account of his
cheerful disposition and his devotion to duty. No matter how hard
or dangerous the work, he was always game to the last.
was very sorry to lose him myself, as living with him at 71, Malvern
Road, Luton, during his first few months of training it makes me
feel a good deal, I can tell you. No doubt Mr Fantham and son will
remember me as Corporal on their visit to Luton.
can assure you we have lost one of the best.
have my greatest sympathy in your sad bereavement.
A HURST (Platoon Sergeant)
16th May 1916
regret to write the followingt lines, and I am sorry to let you
know that William was killed on the 8th instant. He was one of the
best lads in the platoon, and he always seemed bright and jolly
up to his last end.
a small parcel for William, which I divided up between his comrades.
you please accept from his comrades sincere thanks, and our expressions
of sympathy in your sad and sudden bereavement.
J H Wooding (No 2156)
Private 8668 Q
Company, 1st Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Son of George Harding, widower, of Aylesbury Road. Brother of Sam
and Sid. Age 27. Died 20th June 1916 near Ras al 'Ain. Enlisted
at Oxford in January 1908 and went to India in February 1910. Arrived
in Mesopotamia with the battalion on the 27th November 1914. Served
with them through the advance to Ctesiphon and during the siege
of Kut. At the fall of Kut 385 other ranks went into captivity.
Q Company marched out 58 strong, under the command of Sergeant Ward
DCM. Although weakened by the siege, they were marched 500 miles
from- Samarrah to Aleppo, in conditions of great ~-brutality. On,
or about, the I9th June the survivors reached Ras al 'Ain. The Medical
Officer and the Regimental Sergeant Major both reported that he
had died on the last stage of the march to this town. The escort
refused to allow his body to be brought into the camp for burial.
No more than one hundred and five men of the battalion survived
captivity. Commemorated on the Basra Memorial; Panels 26 and 63.
November 1915 he wrote to his sister:
1st Oxf & Bucks Lt Inf
14th November 1915
now take the greatest pleasure in answering your most welcome letter
which I received quite safe and I was very pleased to hear that
you was all enjoying the best of health, as I am quite well myself
at present, and I was very pleased to hear that Sam had enlisted
in the army , as I thought I was going to he the only one , but
after there is three of us serving out of five not such a bad average
after all. Dear Ciss I am receiving the paper regularly every week
and I saw a list of men serving there is a lot of names on their
which seem familiar but I can’t call them to mind not much
news must close now wishing you and all at home a merry Christmas
and a happy new year from your loving brother.
was received in June 1916, from Lt. D Murphy, Commanding Depot 1st
Oxf & Bucks Lt Inf, that he had been captured at Kut. In December
1917 reports received from the following: Q?M Sgt J W Burbage, Pte.
J Willis, L/Cpl V Carter, Pte H Paice and L/Cpl W Swift, indicated
that he had died in May or June 1916. Two other reports, also received
via the Red Cross, related to Pte. W T Harding, who died at Angora
in March 1917.
confirmation of his death as stated above was received from the
Infantry Record Office at Warwick in May 1919. In August 1918 the
War Office forwarded the sum of £30 16s 7d in final settlement of
his estate, so it seems that death was officially presumed at an
Courtesy & Copyright © Graham Pare 2009
48th Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery (Also served as Gunner
930 I35th Oxfordshire Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery (TF).)
Son of George Harding, widower, of Aylesbury Road. Brother of Edward
and Sid. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Age 30 Died
of wounds 29th November 1917 at 52 Field Ambulance, Canada Farm.
has not been possible to identify the position occupied by the battery
on 28th-29th November 1917. However, on I7th December the battery,
already in the line, came under the command of 3rd Brigade RGA.
The brigade had its headquarters at B 2if b 2 8, east of the Yser
Canal near Hulls Farm. The front line had now stabilised on the
Passchendaele Ridge. It seems likely therefore that the battery
position was to the south or south-east of Pilckem. Other battery
records show that Heavy and Siege batteries were engaged in barraging
the German held portions of Passchendaele Ridge and on counter-battery
work on 28th-29th November. Buried in Canada Farm Cemetery, Elverdinghe;
Plot 3, Row F, Grave 34.
Wendover Magazine of January 1918 included the following:
and his pal Sam North had both been home on leave recently, so it
came as a great shock to hear that he had died of wounds on November
29th so soon after returning to his RGA unit in France. His father
and family have our deepest sympathy, for Ted is still prisoner
of war in Asia Minor and Sidney was killed in the Spring. His wife
died whilst the family was young, and his daughter Annie has faithfully
fulfilled her task of bringing up the family; and to her also we
tender our deepest sympathy. Sam was 30 years old and the picture
of strength and energy. The youngest son Ewart is still in France,
and may God spare him is our prayer.
Harding, front, left, seated.
Courtesy & Copyright © Graham Pare 2009
12th Battalion South Wales Borderers (Also served as Private 8145
Army Cyclist Corps.) Spent periods attached to 229 Company Royal
Engineers and the Machine Gun Corps. Son of George Harding, widower,
of Aylesbury Road. Brother of Edward and Sam. Enlisted at Northampton
in 191/f, where working as an engineering apprentice. Age 23. Killed
in action 1lth March 1917 near Clery-sur-Somme.
the 8th March the battalion moved into the Clery south sector to
relieve the 2nd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers. The relief was
completed at 10.50pm. It was reported that the trenches were continuous
and good. The enemy wire was thick,, while the battalion's was moderate.
Throughout the 9th there was much enemy trench mortaring, but no
German patrols were encountered. On the 10th A Company HO was hit
by a trench mortar shell; one other rank was killed, and three officer's
servants and a gas sentry were wounded. During the night there was
gas shelling on the roads and communication trenches. On the 1lth
a German aerial dart killed a man of D Company in a sap head, otherwise
this was a quiet day. Buried in Hem. Farm Military Cemetery Hem-Monacu;
P15t I, Row H, Grave 13.
following letters were received by the family after his death:
Mch 13th 1917
is with the deepest regret that I have to inform you that your son
Private S Harding was killed in action on Sunday March 12th.
you are perhaps aware he acted as my personal orderly & has
done so for the last five months. He has always been a hard and
conscientious worker, faithful & devoted to duty and he is not
only a great loss to the Company & Battalion, but a personal
loss to myself and the other officers of A Coy.
may be a slight comfort to know that he suffered no great pain,
being unconscious from the beginning. All the officers join with
me in offering you all our deepest sympathy. I am sure Cpl Whitworth
will be writing to you himself.
A Sharpe 2nd Lt A Coy
If there are any further particulars that you would care to know
please let me know. I shall only be too glad to do anything can.
now you will have heard the sad news of the death of your son, but
I must just write you a few lines to assure you of my sincere sympathy.
have only just obtained your address so could not write before.
It was on the I3th that I was called in to take the Burial Service,
& his body lies in the small cemetery here, the spot being marked
by a cross.
such a time you will of course feel the lost very much but may one
not find consolation in what the Saviour has taught us & look
for a happy meeting beyond the grave.
God bless and comfort. Yrs sincerely
F Bellman (Chaplain)
This letter refers to 25220 Pte S Harding I2th SWB
official notification of his death states, unlike the Commonwealth
War Graves Commission record, states that he died of wounds. When
this information is taken with that provided by Lt Sharpe it indicates
that Pte Harding was probably one of the three Officers' servants
wounded by the shell which fell on A Company HQ on 10th March.
7th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment. Born in Wendover and lived
at Peacock Farm. Enlisted at Watford. Died of wounds 26th September
1916 at Contay.
to France 17th August 1915. The battalion spent the 26th September
1916 in cellars and dugouts in the southern portion of Thiepval.
At 2am on the 27th, the Commanding Officer decided to attack the
un-captured portion of the village. C and D Companies were to attack
in two waves. A and B Companies were shelled while in the old German
dugouts. Zero hour was set for 5.30am, but due to the heavy darkness
difficulty was met in forming up. Shortly after 5.45am C Company
attacked, but D did not put their attack in until 6.50. Despite
the broken nature of the ground the line was carried to the north
of the village. Thirty-six German prisoners were taken, and it was
estimated that 100 were Killed. The battalion lost two officers
wounded and 110 other ranks killed and wounded. The next day they
took part in the attack on Schwaben Redoubt, leading with A and
B Companies. A Company failed to take Market Trench, being caught
by a machine-gun in R 19 c. For this action 2nd Lieutenant Adlarn
was recommended for, and received the VC. In his report the Commanding
Officer said that the shortage of stretcher bearers made it very
difficult to remove all the wounded. Hicks' name does not, curiously,
appear in the battalion casualty list for this period; either for
the attack on Thiepval or the abortive attack on the Schwaben Redoubt.
Buried in Contay Cemetery; Plot 2, Row D, Grave 15
Wendover Magazine of November 1916, included the following:
is a melancholy coincidence that we have regretfully to announce
in this issue the deaths of two of our brave lads who had spent
so much of their lives in the woods around Halton and Wendover.
The sympathies of everyone have gone out to Mr and Mrs Hicks of
Peacock Lodge, who received notice on October 7 that their second
son, Richard, had died of wounds on 28th of September. “Dick”
was only 18 years of age, and was serving with the Bedfords. He
was a born scout, as one would expect from his woodland training,
and last summer, with some companions, performed a daring bit of
scouting which won the high commendation of his Captain. We have
not yet heard how he received his fatal wounds, but we feel sure
he was in the fore-front of the battle if he could get there. His
elder brother, Jack, is still in France with the Oxford and Bucks,
and has been wounded we understand.
Royal Marine Light Infantry, 1st Royal Marine Battalion, 63rd Royal
Naval Division Husband of Annie Horwood of Beechwood Cottage. Born
24th February 1878. Age 40. Died
of wounds 5th July 1918 at Rouen. Buried in St Sever Cemetery Extenstion,
Rouen; Bock Q, Plot 2, Row E, Grave 24
Captain D Company,
6th Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment Son of Rev Thomas William
and Alethea Mary Hudson, of the Vicarage Wendover. Age 25 Killed
in action 31 July 1917.
30 July the battalion moved up to Canal Rest Camp at Ouderdom, arriving
at l1am. At 9pm they marched up to Zillebeke. At 1.55am on 31 July
the head of the battalion was reported as being in the assembly
area I 17 d and I 23 a and c. Forty-five minutes before zero-hour,
scheduled for 3.50am, the battalion reported itself a s being in
the assembly area.. By 5am, the leading battalions reported that
the Blue Line Had been taken. Two hours after zero officers patrols
were sent out under 2?Lts. M R Hooper and G H Tiga to make contact
witht eh 17th Battalion Manchester Regiment. At 6.50am there was
an unofficial report that the Black Line had been taken. The battalion
moved off from the assembly area in artillery formation at 7.15am.
They were passing through Sanctuary Wood, in I 13 c, at 8.30am,
when they came under machine-gun and artillery fire. The Manchester’s
trenches appeared ungarrisoned and no friendly troops were encountered.
At 8.45am the Battalion deployed in extended order under machine-gun
firefrom the menin Road and Glencorse Wood, having reached Jackdaw
Reserve Trench. The advance was then continued and the line of the
road taken. The attack on the Black Line was launched at 9am and
the trench-mortars and a battalion of the Suffolk Regiment assisted
in reducing a strong point at I 14 a 3 25. The line from the cross-roads
at I7 d 9 1 through Jargon Switch to Surbiton Villas had been taken
and contact made with the 2nd Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment in
J 7 d.. The continuation of the attack was held up, at 10.10am,
by rifle and machine-gun fire from the Jargon Line. At 10am, when
Captain Hudson’s rave marker records his death as taking place,
the line J 7 d 9 4 – the cross-roads at J 7 d 9 1 –
Jargon Switch – J 13 b 9 6 – cross-roads at J 13 b 9
5 east of Surbiton Villas was consolidated, contact being maintained
with the Suffolks. A counter-attack from Glencorse Wood was broken
up at 3pm and the remainder of the day was quiet, the battalion
HQ being in a tunnel on the Menin Road at J13 b 3 1. Buried in Hooge
Crater Cemetery; Plot 2, Row B, Grave 4. Original grave marker now
lodged in St Mary’s Parish Church, Wendover. Hudson
is not commemorated on the Wendover Memorial
F Battery, XIV Brigade, Royal Horse Artillery. Born in Aylesbury.
Enlisted London 1914. Died
of wounds 16th September 1916 at Heilly.
the 1 6th September F Battery moved to a new position at I 7 d 6
7, in open ground north east of Delville Wood. The Brigade HQ was
at S 17 d 3 1, just south of Longueval. Throughout the 17th they
carried out day and night firing on the whole Divisional front.
The enemy's artillery was also in action and all the batteries suffered
some casualties from the shell fire, on the I8th visibility was
poor and no observation was possible, nonetheless they fired a full
programme in support of the infantry. Buried in Heilly Station Cemetery,
Meri court L'Abbe; Plot 2, How H, Grave 41.
Wendover Magazine of November 1916 included the following:
other loss is that of Corporal Percy Ingram (aged 31), of the Royal
Horse Artillery, and his father Mr W Ingram, of Parish Piece, also
has our deepest sympathy. It will be remembered that Mr Ingram spent
many years as a colleague of Mr Hicks on the Halton preserves. He
also, like his friend Hicks, has another son in the army.
Ingram had served six years in the RHA before war broke out, and
joined up with the Reserve when war broke out. In his boyhood days
he was educated at Wendover School under Mr J G Bushell, and was
in civil employment at Putney Garage when called up in 1914.
following letter to Mr Ingram gives a brief account of his death.
His wounds were apparently in the abdomen and arm:-
was standing just outside your son’s gunpiut when it was hit
be a shell, and I was the first man to be near him. I was with him
all the time until he was taken away to the hospital
did not seem to be in very great pain, and was quite conscious.
He did not say he wanted anything to be done.
was a very gallant soldier: I can say nothing better of any man
Yours in the deepest sympathy
P D EVELYN
won his stripes while serving with the RHA in India, and saw and
did good work in the North-West Frontier “scraps”. With
his battery he had the honour of being first past the present King
at the Durbar.
his good friend ”Yorkie” (presumably a Yorkshire sporting
gunner) he kept a brace of sporting dogs, and on one occasion got
lost in the jungle while hunting the Blue Bull. His father has some
interesting mementoes of his activities. Poor “Yorkie”
was with him in the gunpit, and his failure to write indicates that
he probably shared Percy’s fate.
T/2C669I 2nd/4th Battalion, Queen’s, Royal West Surrey Regiment.
Also served as T4192. Son of Charles and Edith Johns of Nightingale
Road. Living, at Guildford. Enlisted at Guildford in 1915. Age 23
Killed in action 27th December 1917 near Jerusalem.
the 21st December the Company at Flanders Post pushed forward 200
yards onto Cheshire Ridge. The remainder of the battalion concentrated
between these two points. Two Turkish attacks on the ridge were
beaten off, but when the leading Company advanced onto the reverse
slope and tried to cross the right shoulder they were held up. After
an artillery barrage the 2nd/1Oth Battalion Middlesex Regiment captured
Zamby and the Turks retreated along the wall to the White Hill.
The Turks tried but failed to recapture the hill during the night.
The battalion lost 2 officers killed, 2 died of wounds and 5 wounded.
Thirty-two other ranks were killed and sixty-six wounded, of whom
six later died. For the next five days attempts were made to improve
the position, out were hindered by the Turks holding Ras Arkub as
Suffa. The Turkish guns registered Zamby, White Hill and the Wall
in the morning. However, although they were driven off in the morning
the battalion was forced to withdraw in the afternoon. As the Turks
reached the far slopes of Zamby, and the south side of White Hill,
they were forced to pull back from the reverse slope of the latter,
and down the Wall to Zamby. At 9pm they were relieved by the 1st/7th
Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers; having lost 3 officers wounded,
33 other ranks killed and 67 wounded. Buried in Jerusalem War Cemetery;
Row R, Grave 113.
THE ROLL OF HONOUR.
KILLED IN ACTION. PRIVATE J. N. JOHNS, WENDOVER.
and Mrs. Johns, of Nightingale Road, have received official
news that their son, James. N. Johns, of the Queen's R.W.
Surrey Regiment, was killed on December 27th, in Palestine.
The whole town sympathises with them in their loss, for Jim,
as he was called, was well known„ having served an apprenticeship
with Mr. Birch, builder, in Perry Road, and had been a member
at the Church Lads' Brigade. He joined up over two years ago
at Guildford, where he enlisted with some companions to defend
their country's cause. All his letters home were full of good
news, and looking on the bright side of things, and containing
no complaints. He was held in high esteem by his companions.
He was at the relief of Jerusalem, where be, hoped to get
his Christmas dinner. He encamped twice in the Garden of Eden,
and had been to places of interest, particularly Bethlehem,
which he thought the best of all. Had he lived until April
20th he would have been 21 years of age.
of James Johns and Newspaper Article Courtesy & Copyright ©
Michael Oates 2009
2nd Battalion Suffolk Regiment (Also served as Private 31507 Suffolk
Regt.) Born in Wendover. Lived at the Wellhead Inn. Enlisted at
in action I2th May 1917 near Monchy.
the 4th May the battalion, relieved two Companies of the 10th Battalion
Royal Welsh Fusiliers in the Monchy defences. They remained there
until the 10th, when they were relieved by the 7th Battalion Kings
Shropshire Light Infantry. On the 9th they suffered a. heavy and,
at times, continuous barrage. The shelling continued when they went
into the Brown Line on the 10th, and was heavy on the 11th. On that
day one Company and four Lewis gun sections under 2n.d Lieutenant
Wainwright were sent to Lid Trench, under orders of the 8th Battalion
King1s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. On the 12th a further two platoons
were sent to Lid Trench, leaving at 8pm and returning at 4arn on
the 13th. Commemorated on his sister's grave in Wendover churchyard.
Buried in Feuchy Chapel British Cemetery, Wancourt; Plot I, Row
E, Grave II.
2nd Battalion Royal Scots Fusiliers. Younger son of the late John
Kennedy JP DL and Mrs Kennedy of Bacombe Warren and Underwood, Ayrshire.
Age 26. Commissioned October 1906. Promoted Lieutenant September
1911. Mentioned in despatches for services in France and Belgium.
Killed in action 25th October 1914 near Beceleare.
the 25th the battalion were holding trenches between Beceleare and
Polygon Wood. At 5am the Germans began to shell them and firing
was heard in the wood in front of their position. At 1pm the CSM
and six men went out as a burial party. They lost three of their
number to snipers, but captured one officer and nineteen men while
armed only with shovels. Some losses were suffered in the trenches
from sniping. At 5pm they were ordered to support the 2nd Battalion
Bedfordshire Regiment. The attack went forward immediately but was
not pressed. Lieutenant Kennedy was posted wounded and missing.
Commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial; Panels 19 to 33.
11th Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment. Son of Frederick Bailey and
Rosina Langford of Boddington.. Born in Watford. Enlisted at Horsham.
Age 21. Killed
in action 30th June 1916 near Rue du Bois.
the 26th of June the battalion were holding the Ferme au Bois left
sector; the area of Hun Street, Hun Post, Hill Post, Port Arthur
and Lansdown Post. In the afternoon they were relieved by the Ist/Ist
Battalion Cambridgeshire Regiment and went into billets in Richebourg
L'Avoue. On the 29th a barrage was put down on the enemy front line
from 2pm to 5.30pm. The Germans retaliated by firing on Factory
Post and killing ten other ranks. As night fell the majority of
the battalion formed up in carrying parties for the 12th and 13th
Battalions. At 2.50am on the 30th both sides exchanged heavy artillery
fire, shortly afterwards the carrying parties followed the two assaulting
battalions over the top to the Gerrman front line. They suffered
the following casualties: 4 officers wounded; 2 officers missing
believed killed; 4 other ranks killed; 80 wounded and 32 missing.
Unusually the casualties in the other ranks are given as only approximate.
Buried in St Vaast Post Military Cemetery, Richebourg L'Avoue; Plot
3, Row R, Grave I
Wendover Magazine of August 1916 included the following:
Herbert Langford was the son of Mr and Mrs Langford, of Boddington
House. Those who knew him speak of him asa good man and a good son,
Everybody liked him. For some time he was in service at Hampden
House, but when the war broke out he at once joined the Army, being
attached, to the 11th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment. This
was in August 1914. He was then only just eighteen. His training
lasted until the present year, when he went across to France on
March 1st. He met his death on June n30th, the day before the beginning
of the big push, at the age of twenty. Our deepest sympathy goes
out to Mr and Mrs Langford in the great loss they have suffered.
They will have the consolation of knowing the their son died like
a hero, and that in Wendover his name, ennobled by the cause for
which he died, will be held in glorious memory.
2nd/9th Battalion London Regiment (Queen Victoria's Rifles). Son
of Mrs Marshall of Manor House. Husband of Alice Eva Winkfield (formerly
Marshall) of Clapham, London. Born in Marylebone 21st July 1880.
Age 37. Killed in action 26th September 191? near St. Julien. Commemorated
on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Addendum.
10pm on the 25th September the battalion moved from dug outs in
the canal bank at Boesingh.e, where they had been since the 21st.
They moved up via Essex Farm, Buffs Road and the Tin Hut to St.
Julien. They were shelled by the enemy at 5am on the 26th. However,
at 5.45am they were on the start line running from Cluster House
to Von Tirpitz Farm and south of Stoppe Farm. The attack met heavy
machine gun and sniper fire and was held up in shell holes, short
of the German line, with many casualties. D Company were held up
before Vale House, C between Vale House and Aviatik Farm, and A
and B short of the farm. At 6am Lieutenant Marshall disappeared
into the fog at the head of his platoon. Two platoons of D Company
also vanished into the mist and were not seen again.
Marshall's name was omitted from the War Office list "Officers
Died In The Great War". A note to this effect was put in the
Regimental history. The omission seems, however, to have lead to
his non-inclusion on the Tyne Cot Memorial, until the author's researches
8th Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers. Born in Ipswich. Enlisted
at Norwich. Died of wounds 25th August 1915 at Suvla Bay. Proceeded
overseas with Battalion July 1915.
battalion landed at Suvla Bay on the 6th August. They first went
into the trenches, at Lala Baba, on the 14th, losing one man killed
and one wounded. They were relieved the next day and went into the
reserve trenches, where they lost one killed and two wounded on
the 16th. On the 17th they relieved the 5th Battalion Dorsetshire
Regiment in the front line. The following day they lost four men
killed and eleven wounded. On the 19th they were ordered to attack
the Turkish line 700 yards away and 1000 yards south of 'W Hill.
They went over the top at 4am, advancing almost to the enemy line,
where they were held up by machine gun fire. The casualties amongst
the officers were two killed, five wounded and three missing. Three
other ranks were killed, one hundred and forty-one wounded, eighty-eight
missing and two wounded and missing. On the 20th they were relieved
to the reserve trenches, and the next day went onto the reverse
slope of Lala Baba. On the 22nd they were moved down to a beach
further north up the coast. They only remained there for one day,
on the 23rd finding themselves in the front line at Sisak Biyu.
They were only to spend that day, and the next, here before being
relieved by the 6th Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers. However, on
the 24th they lost one man killed, seven wounded and one missing.
Commemorated on the Helles Memorial; Panels 33 to 33.
2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Also served as Private
T4/142201 Army Service Corps.) Husband of L Parkins of 6 Scrubwood
Cottages. Brother-in-law of Archibald Bowden. Born in Scrubwood.
Enlisted at Aylesbury. Died of wounds (gas) 13th August 1917 at
the 1st to the 25th of July the battalion came under the command
of the Officer commanding 257th Tunnelling, Company, Royal Engineers.
A and C Companies were at Nieupoort, and the other two companies
at Oost Dunkirk. On the 26th A and C Companies were relieved and
marched to Bray Dunes. During the night of the 26th/27th the battalion
was reunified in Coxyde. Casualties during this period were one
other rank killed and thirty wounded, in addition one officer and
243 other ranks were gassed. From the 27th to the 31st July they
were encamped at Bray Dunes, before taking over the right part of
the left sub-sector at St. Georges. B and D Companies were in the
line with the other two companies in Maison Blanche. On the 4th
of August they were relieved to Ribbaillet camp. There on the 14th
they suffered a heavy gas attack. Their casualties were one officer
and thirty ether ranks gassed; one man died of gas poisoning; three
other ranks wounded and one died of wounds. Total casualties for
the period of the 5th to the 17th of August were as follows: due
to gas; 2 officers and 14 other ranges wounded, y other ranks died
of wounds, non-gas injuries; 5 other ranks killed, 14 wounded and
5 died of wounds. Parkins' death was reported as being due to gas
poisoning. Buried in Coxyde Military Cemetery; Plot 2, Row G, Grave
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 reported:
cheerful little Ben is no more. Wes hall miss his cheerful ways.
Joining the ASC last year, he was afterwards attached to the Inniskilling
Fusiliers, and met his death (wounded and gassed) on August 13.
It is not generally known that he came home on leave to be married
this year. Though his father’s home is at Scrubwood, he was
always to be seen about Wendover, working for some years for Mrs
Terry, an, before joining up, for Mr C S Routh at the Manor House.
He was 31 years of age.
Private 33595 12th
Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment. Also served 6th Battalion.Son
of Thomas Parkins. Husband of Florence Jane Parkins of Woodlands
Lodge, Great Missenden. Born in Ellesborough. Age 32. Enlisted at
Great Missenden. Killed in action 8th May 1917 near Fresnoy.
the 8th of Bay the battalion were holding trenches to the east of
Fresnoy. At 3.45am a German barrage came down on all parts of the
British line, and on battalion headquarters. Due to heavy mist it
was not possible to see more than 50 yards. Because of this the
SOS signal put up by the front line had to be relayed to Brigade
headquarters and the artillery by battalion HO, over the telephone.
The front line companies checked the assault of the 5th Bavarian
Division and then fell back. Counter attacks were made by B and
C Companies, and the 1st Battalion Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry.
The front line was regained but could not be held as the enemy were
on the nigh ground on both flanks. D Company were later sent up
to form a new front line. The battalion lost 1 officer killed, 7
wounded, 2 wounded and missing and 3 missing; 288 other ranks were
reported as killed, wounded or missing. Commemorated on the Arras
Memorial; Bay 6.
5th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry. (Also
served as Private 4442 1st/4th Battalion.) Son of Walter and Sarah
Ann Parsons of Pound Street. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Age 24 Killed
in action 23rd August 1917 near Glencorse 'Wood.
with the 1st/4th Battalion in France and Belgium until July 1916.
He was then wounded by shrapnel in five places during£ the fighting
between Pozieres and Ovillers.
battalion relieved the 5th Battalion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry
in the front line at 12.30am on the 23rd of August. During the relief
the enemy shelled Jargon Switch and the strongpoint in J 14 a 3
2. From 12.30am to 4am the barrage fell on the Menin Road and the
Advanced. Dressing Station. At 4.am there was a heavy bombardment
of Jargon Trench. At 4.30am the 43rd. Brigade put up their SOS signal.
At 4.42am there was an attack on the battalion's right company and
the Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. The latter were forced back
and the battalion withdrew so as to conform. The battalion boundary
was now at J 14 a 6 2, with the enemy contesting the line from J
14 a I 0 to J 14 a 5 I. At 7.30am D Company was reinforced by the
bombers from A and C Companies. However, at 5am the Germans had
begun to bomb down the outpost line from J I4 a 5 I towards the
strong point. A defensive flank was held from the right hand post
to the strong point. A counter-attack of bombers and snipers then
drove the Germans back. At 9am C Company were ordered up from support.
At I0am the British barrage was brought down on the former outpost
line and at 2.45pm the remainder of C Company was sent to reinforce
D. From 6pm until midnight it was quiet. The battalion's casualties
were three other ranks killed, two officers and 109 other ranks
wounded and thirty other ranks missing.
the Tyne Got Memorial; Panels 96 to 98. Also commemorated on the
family grave in Wendover churchyard with his nephew Ronald Arthur
Felgate, Corporal 5348817 9th Bn., Royal Fusiliers (City of London
Regt.)killed in action 9th September I944 aged 22. Gradara War Cemetery,
Italy I, E, 74
Wendover Magazine of October 1917 reported:
Parsons was killed on August 23, according to the War Office notification,
but his sorrowing parents can obtain no further particulars. There
are many parents in Bucks who are equally anxious for news of the
poor Territorial lads. Arthur was 24 years old, and he went out
to France in January, 1916, to be badly wounded on the Somme by
shrapnel in July. After leaving hospital at Torquay he spent some
time in convalescence at Ballyvonare, Ireland, with Arthur Bonham
and Will Elliott. He was sent back to France to re-join the Bucks
Territorials early this year, there to meet his sad end. In civil
life he had worked as cycle fitter for Mr E J Sharp, who spoke wonderfully
well I of him , and latterly for Mr H Wood, who held him in great
C Company, 2nd Battalion Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. (Also
served with the 3rd Battalion.) Son of Frederick John and Emily
Pedel of the Railway Hotel, Pound Street. Born Halton. Age 21 .
Enlisted at St. Pancras in August 1914. Killed in action 15th February
1915 near St. Eloi. Trained with the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion at
Falmouth. 'Went to France on the 26th January 1915.
the 14th Of February the battalion was in billets in Dikkebusch.
The German barrage began at 4.10pm. At 7.30pm two companies, and
one machine gun section were sent up to Voormzeele. They were joined
at 8.10pm by the other two companies and battalion HQ. Arriving
at Voormzeele, they were ordered to launch a counter attack. They
left Voormzeele at 11.45pm, arriving at the front line at lam on
the 15th. The 3rdBattalion King's Royal Rifle Corps, and one company
of the Leinster Regiment were to cooperate in the attack. The battalion
moved over the open country from St Eloi and received instructions
to take Trenches 21 and 22. Support was to be provided by the machine
guns of the Royal Irish Regiment in St. Eloi. B and C Companies
formed the first wave and A and D were in support. The battalion
deployed at 3.30am, in anticipation of zero hour, which was timed
for 4am. The supporting barrage lasted from 3.30am to 3.45am. The
initial objectives were taken. The King's Royal Rifle Corps were
then ordered to retake trenches 19 and 20, with the battalion in
support. This task was also carried out. Battalion HQ, and the line
to the right and left came under heavy rifle fire throughout the
day. In audition the HQ and support areas were shelled at dusk,
notwithstanding this it was reported that the day was quiet. The
battalion’s casualties were one officer and twelve other ranks
killed; one officer and twenty-eight other ranks wounded.
a letter to his mother an unknown officer told her that Pedel had
been buried close to where he fell. Commemorated on the Menin Gate
Memorial; Panel 20.
205060 Ist/1st Royal Bucks Hussars (Also served as 773). Son of
Frederick John and Emily Pedel of the Railway Hotel, Pound Street.
Born in Halton. Age 21. Died of wounds I6th November 1917 near Ramleh.
Enlisted in Aylesbury in 1912.
the 14th of November the Regiment moved to Akir. They were shelled
en route, losing one officer and five other ranks wounded. On the
15th they received orders to take Naaneh. Two squadrons and one
squadron from the Berkshire Yeomanry galloped to the Abu Shushe
position, dismounted and brought rifle fire onto it. When the Bucks
Hussars' led horses were brought up at a gallop they joined the
pursuit of the Turks and, swinging to the left, captured the high
ground commanding Abu Shushe. In doing this they lost one officer
died of wounds, one man killed and 70 other ranks wounded. After
clearing the position they marched to Naaneh and Ramleh and went
into bivouacs. Buried in Ramleh War Cemetery; Plot 9, Row P, Grave
his death the following letter, published in the Bucks Herald
on 2nd February 1918 was received from his commanding officer:
will have heard from the officer commanding your son's squadron
all the details of his death. I write to you as the officer commanding
his Regiment to offer you my most sincere sympathy. Sgt Pedel had
distinguished himself by his gallant conduct on November 13 in a
charge; he was mortally wounded in a dismounted attack on November
I5 and died of his wounds on the following day. The loss to the
Regiment is a considerable one, but great strength is gathered from
such examples. It must he a great consolation to you to know how
well your son had done and that he died gallantly leading his troop.
Wendover Magazine of January 1918 reported the following:
new of Fred’s death in action out in Palestine came to us
just as we went to press for the December issue. Following the loss
of Alfred in France earlier in the war, this is a sad loss for Mr
and Mrs F Pedel, and everywhere we have heard sympathy for them
expressed. Fred had not long attained his majority, and was a fine
specimen of British manhood. Whilst at school, and before proceeding
to Colston School, Bristol, he proved himself a fine boy at sports,
and was a most powerful and elegant swimmer. His friends of the
football and cricket clubs will be stunned to hear of his death.
He joined the Bucks Hussars before he was 16 years old and joined
up on mobilisation for war, so he had spent more than two years
out in the East.
Stoker Petty Officer
2o'3<430 HMS Queen Mary. Son of Joe and Elizabeth Rogers of Bacombe
Terrace. Born the 25th of July 1873. Husband of Rosa Rogers of 7
St. Margaret's Terrace, Haslemere Road, Southsea. Age 43. Killed
in action 3Ist May 1916 off Jutland. Enlisted,
First Battle-cruiser Squadron sailed from the Firth of Forth on
the 30th of May. The German Fleet was sighted at 2.20pm on the 31st.
The German battle-cruisers opened the engagement at 3.45pm when
the Lutzow fired her first salvo. The Indefatigable engaged in a
ship-to-ship duel with the Von der Tann, and sank at 4.05pm. Shortly
afterwards the Lion escaped a similar fate only by flooding her
magazines. At 4.26 the Queen Mary was struck by a salvo from the
Derfflinger. It is believed that the flash from these shells penetrated
her main magazines, causing the ship to explode and sink in under
half a minute. Seventeen survivors were picked up from the total
complement of more than I COO officers and men. Commemorated on
the Portsmouth Naval Memorial; Panel 16.
2nd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Son of Charles anadAnn Rowland
of Wyvenho, Perry Street. Born in Hammersmith, the family moving
to Wendover in 1909. Enlisted at 'Wandsworth. Age 27. Died of wounds
5th November 1916 near Lesbeoufs.
the 3rd of November the battalion took, over the right sub-section
of the left hand portion of the Lesbeoufs line. The battalion was
disposed as follows: B Company in Summer Trench and five strong
points in front of it; D Company in Dewdrop Trench; A. Company in
Windy Trench and Z Company in John Bull Trench. There was heavy
shelling from 4.30pm to 5.15pm. C Company was then moved into Dewdrop
Trench on the right of D. During the night of the 4th/5th 30 men
from B Company, under 2nd/Lieu tenant Loverseed attempted to prepare
the way for a future attack by taking out a German post. This preparatory
raid failed with heavy casualties. Zero hour for the main attack
was set for 11.10am on the 5th. At 11.15am the enemy were seen to
be retiring and C and B Companies moved up to the right of B. All
three companies then moved forward and by noon were dug in 100 yards
short of the objective. This put them 150 yards in front of Summer
Trench. Touch was maintained with the troops on either side, although
the attack by 17th Division on Orion Trench failed. Later in the
day the battalion constructed saps back to their own former line
and out to the German line. Commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial;
Pier 4, Face A.
mother received a letter from an unknown officer after her son's
death. The following extract was published in the Bucks Herald
on 17th November 1916:
am very sorry to have to inform you that your son died of wounds
received in action on 5th November. He died painlessly and everything
possible was done for him. He was buried and a cross placed over
his grave. Private Rowland was a very good soldier and did his duty
well, and his death is felt keenly by all ranks. You have my deepest
syrnpathy in your great loss.
3rd Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment, attached 2nd Battalion. Son
of Dr. and Mrs. Lauriston, Shaw of Icknield Cottage, Pound Street.
Age 22. Killed in action 9th May 1915 near Richebourg L'Avoue.
the 8th of May the battalion moved up from Les Faucons and put out
bridges to cross the stream at Richebourg L'Avoue. They then took
up the following positions; in the first line of breastworks, C
Company on the right and D on the left; in the second line A Company
on the right and B on the left. The limit, of the objective had
been set as R 2 and V 1. At 3.30am on the 9th rum and tea was distributed
to the companies. Zero hour was set for 5.30am and timed to coincide
with the opening of the barrage. The first wave consisted of numbers
9, 11, 5 and 16 platoons; followed by numbers 10, 12, 13 and 14.
Number 8 platoon had been placed in reserve with the Royal Engineers.
A Company then followed them over in support, advancing in columns
of sections with 50 yards between the two waves. The first wave
was made up of numbers 2 and 3 platoons, the latter under Lieutenant
Shaw. Numbers 1 and 4 formed the second wave. B Company moved up
at 5.28am and two platoons, numbers 5 and 6, went over in support
of D Company. Two machine guns went over in support of the right
hand part of the attack. Number 7 platoon remained behind the breast-works
to hold the line. The Royal Engineers, arriving at the breastworks
with number 8 platoon, advanced in error and suffered heavy casualties.
The advance of the 5th Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment overtook
that of the battalion's second wave and caused some confusion. C
and A Companies reached within 40 yards of the German line out were
then held up. The right of the line was enfiladed by machine gun
fire and the left suffered from enfilade fire from an angle in the
German line. The major part of the attack was held up 150 yards
from the German line. At 6.30am they were ordered to withdraw under
cover of a new bombardment and the battalion reformed in the Rue
du Bois breastwork. Lieutenant Shaw was wounded while leading his
platoon in the early stages of the attack. While arrangements were
being made to bring him in he was hit again and killed. Commemorated
on the Le Touret Memorial; Panels 20 and 21.
16th (Public Schools) Battalion Middlesex Regiment. Son of William
and Fanny Simmons of Pear Tree Cottage, High Street, Born in Wendover.
Nicked Gooseberry. Died of wounds 2nd July 1916 near Auchonvillers.
at Tring in 1914 in the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
the 1st of July the battalion was in support to the 1st Battalion
Lancashire fusiliers and the 2nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers in front
of Hawthorn Ridge. C and D Companies and battalion HO. were in Cripps
Cut, with A and B in Cardiff Street. The battalion's objective was
the German second line east of the Beaucourt Road; Q 6 c 7 0 to
Q12 b 00 65. The mine under Hawthorn Ridge was to be blown at 7.20a.m,
with the 2nd Royal Fusiliers assaulting ten minutes later. As that
battalion reached the German frontline the Middlesex were to begin
their advance in platoon columns in single file. C and D Companies
were to form the first wave, on the right and left respectively,
supported by A and B Companies. Some 120 men of the Royal Fusiliers
reached the lip of the Hawthorn Ridge mine crater. However, when
the Middlesex crossed the parapet at 8ain they found much of the
wire uncut and the gaps between it choked with dead and wounded.
They immediately came under heavy machine gun fire from the Bergwerk
to the north of Beaumont Hamel. No troops reached the German line.
The battalion's casualties were as follows; 3 officers killed, 10
wounded, 6 missing believed killed and 5 missing, in the other ranks;
19 killed, 306 wounded, 37 missing believed killed and 138 missing.
This was later revised to a total of 32 officers and 517 other ranks
killed, wounded or missing out of a total of 32 officers ands 689
other ranks engaged. Buried in Auchonvillers Military Cemetery;
Plot 2, How A, Grave II Also commemorated on the family grave in
Magazine of August 1916 reported the following:
Harry Simmons we have received the following letter from a prominent
Wendover resident, which expresses better than we could much that
ought to be written about our dead hero –
SIR, - May I be permitted a small space in your excellent Magazine
to convey to Mr and Mrs W Simmonns and family the sincerest sympathy,
I amn sure, of all in Wendover in the great bereavement they have
suffered in the loss of their only son Harry, who dies like a man
for his country.
who knew Harry personally as I did cannot possibly speak too highly
of him in every way. Honesty, truthfulness, strict adherence to
business, politeness – these were some of his outstanding
characteristics – and whatever he undertook to do he did well,
whether for himself or others.
a C.L.B. lad he was keen and one of the best. He was always a good
lad at home to his parents, and when he left Wendover to improve
himself in business experience one was certain he would succeed.
Although it is hard to lose a dear one, Mr and Mrs Simmons have
the satisfaction of knowing that their son was trusted and loved
by all who knew him – that he has done his duty, and that
right well. – N.L.”
Lance-Corporal) 27251 2nd/4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry. Born in Wendover. Lived in Tring Road. Enlisted
at Aylesbury. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission and Soldiers
Died erroneously record his name as Summons. Killed
in action 23rd Larch near Prernont
the I8th of March the battalion took over the Forward Zone between
Fayet and Gricourt. C Company took the left front and B the right
front. Two platoons of A Company were posted in the road near the
Needle. Of the counter-attack companies, two platoons of A and the
company HQ were at the Willows (M 28 c 1 5) and D Company and battalion
HQ were in Enghien. The next two days were spent in improving the
position and sending out patrols to check the German line, as it
was considered likely that the attack would begin on the 21st. From
4.30am on the 21st the battalion's position was heavily shelled,
much use being made of gas shells fired onto the keeps and back
areas. At 9am, under a heavy smoke barrage, the German infantry
attacked. The forward Zone was penetrated and Enghien Redoubt surrounded.
D Company and battalion HQ held out here until 4pm, when they attempted
to fight their way out. The survivors of the battalion, probably
less than 50 men, joined the 2nd/5th Gloucestershire Regiment. Fourteen
officers were missing, four missing believed killed and one missing.
Five other ranks had been killed, 32 were wounded, 31 wounded and
missing and 494 missing. The survivors of the battalion were formed
into a composite battalion with the remainder of the Brigade. On
the night of the 22nd the composite battalion guarded the bridge-heads
on the Somme at Voyennes and Offoy. During the day the Regiment
lost 1 wounded, 1 wounded and missing and five missing. On the 23rd,
when the Brigade rested at Languevoisin and Billancourt, the Regiment
lost one officer killed and six men wounded.
his place of burial, well to the east of the battalion's position
on the 21st, it seems lively that he, in fact, died of wounds in
German hands on the 23rd, having been wounded and captured on the
21st. Buried in Premont British Cemetery; Plot 3, Row AA, Grave
1st/4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Son of Mrs Sarah Simmons, widow, of Tring Road. Born in Buckingham.
Age 38. Died of wounds 16th August 1916 at Warloy Baillon. Enlisted
at Aylesbury late in 1915. Went to France in July 1916.
the 13th of August the battalion moved off from bivouacs to the
neighbourhood of Usna Redoubt. At 7am they moved on and took over
the front line (Skyline Trench). C Company were on the right, D
on the left, B in support and A in reserve, with 2 platoons in Ovillers.
There was very heavy shelling all day, notably on Skyline and Ration
Trenches. By the evening Skyline Trench had been obliterated. Shortly
before 10prn two enemy battalions attacked to the front and the
left. The centre of the position was penetrated and the survivors
of two platoons of C Company cut off in Skyline Trench. A bombing
attack was organized from Ration Trench up to Skyline Trench out
it was beaten back. On the 14th, owing to the casualties sustained,
no further counter-attack was possible and the line of Ration Trench
was held as the front line. At 2pm the battalion was relieved by
the Bucks Battalion. During these two days the battalion had lost
one officer killed, missing and six wounded, 147 other ranks were
killed, wounded or missing. Buried in Warloy Baillon Communal Cemetery
Extension; Plot 7, Row C, Grave 30
Wendover Magazine of September 1916 reported:
name has to be added to the long roll of Wendover men who have laid
down their lives for their country, that of Tom Simmons, of York
Buildings. His widowed mother bears up bravely under the shock,
and universal sympathy is felt for her and her other son and daughters.
Tom had been her main support, being the only single son left at
home, and many considered that his age (he was 38), and under such
circumstances he might, though attested, have had good grounds for
an appeal to the Tribunal .
face and figure were well known in this part of Bucks, as he had
worked for many years for Mr T J Stevens, moving about with his
steam rollers and threshing machines.
news of his death came to his mother from the Military Hospital
am very sorry indeed to have to tell you of the death of your son,
T Simmons, 5816 1/4th Oxford and Bucks, who died in this hospital
this morning early.
was brought in severely wounded in the abdomen and in a very collapsed
condition; but although the surgeon and sisters did all they possibly
could do for him, he did not improve, and died at 4amthis morning.
will be buried in the village cemetery at Warloy by our Chaplain.
M Whyte, Sister
was by nature very quiet and reserved, and had an aversion to having
his photograph taken, so we regret we shall be unable to print his
portrait with those of our other heroes, unless some mutual friend
has one in his or her possession.
6th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry. Son
of George and Ellen Slade of Cold Comfort. Age 19. Nicknamed Dapper.
Died of wounds 22nd September 1917 at Canada Farm. Enlisted at Aylesbury
and served with the 3rd/1st Bucks Battalion.
the 19th of September the battalion was about Au Bon Gite at U 26
d 2 8. At 2arn on the 20th they formed up on the following line;
U 23 d 7 4 to U 23 d 4 9 to U 26 d 2 8 to C 3 a 8 2 to C 3 a 3 3.
A Company were on the left, B in the centre, C on the right and
D in reserve. Battalion HQ was at Double Cottages; U 23 d 3 2. At
5.40am oil drums were fired into the enemy trenches and the cemetery
at U 24 c 0 0. Heavy machine gun fire was met from Eagle Trench
as the attack went in. By 6.30all companies were digging in west
of Eagle Trench. At 5pm a barrage fell on the line U 23 d I 4 -
U 29 b 2 9. At 6.30pm the British artillery bombarded Eagle Trench
and the battalion attacked once again. There was little resistance
until they reached U 23 b 8 05, when they were held up and then
bombed back. A block was formed in the trench and part of the battalion
was then withdrawn to Louis Farm. Posts were held from Eagle Trench
east along the edge of the cemetery to a point south of the road
to Louis Farm. On the 21st they were relieved by the 12th Battalion
King's Royal Rifle Corps and moved to the east of the Steenbeek.
A and B Companies went into shelters at U 3 b 8 8, C and D went
to Cork House and battalion HQ was established at Candle Avenue.
On the 22nd C and D Companies were heavily shelled, losing their
two remaining officers wounded. During this four day period the
battalion's total casualties were as follows; 3 officers killed
and 9 wounded, 40 other ranks killed, 122 wounded and 33 missing
believed killed. Buried in Canada Farm Cemetery, Elverdinghe; Plot
3, How C, Grave 24. Also
commemorated on the family grave in Wendover churchyard.
Wendover Magazine of November 1917 reported:
came through during the month of the deaths of Jessie Slade and
Gunner Archie Bowden, and we can veryn inadequately express the
sympathy we all feel for the two families. Mr and Mrs Sladfe some
years ago, long before we dreamt of this war, lost one son by sudden
illness whilst he was serving in the army and poor Jessie himself
had a severe illness two years ago after he joined the “Terriers”.
We scarcely thought he would be considered fit to go abroad. He
had been retained for some time as a bugle, and in his old CLB days
it was part of his daily recreation at Cold Comfort to practice
the calls, and thus to qualify as one of the best buglers in the
Battalion. He was only 19 years of age, having joined up long before
he was of military age, and his death is given as Sept. 22nd. He
was a Juvenile Oddfellow.
magazine also reports that mark Simmons, killed in action 23 March
1918, was one of those who carried him out of action.
8th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment (Also served as Private 32313
Worcestershire -Regiment.) (Medal Rolls record previous service
with 1/1st Herts. Regt.) Son of William and Lucy Smith. Husband
of the late Lucy Smith of 7 Sidney Terrace. Born in Wendover. Enlisted
at Aylesbury. Age 39 Died 17th October 1918 near Givet. Died
while a prisoner of war in German hands. Originally buried in Givet
German Cemetery but the exact location of the grave could not be
established. Now commemorated on Givet German Cemetery Memorial
in Sedan Torcy French National Cemetery.
| Son of the late
George and Mary Ann Spittles of London Road. Age 20. Invalided from
the army on account of ill health. Died 9th May 1917 in Wendover.
in Wendover churchyard.
2nd/4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Husband of Mary Taylor of Cold Harbour. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Killed
in action 22nd August 1917 near St. Julien.
the 19th of August the battalion was in camp at Watou. The company
commanders reconnoitred the line about St. Julien. In the afternoon
of the 20th they relieved the 2nd/6th Gloucestershire Regiment in
the support line. After nightfall they moved up to the front line,
relieving the 2nd/4th Gloucestershire Regiment. The 21st was spent
in making preparations for the attack, planned for dawn on the 22nd.
There was considerable artillery activity on both sides and the
battalion lost one officer and 4 other ranks killed and 31 other
ranks wounded. The battalion's objective was Gunpit No. 36 in C
13 b (Martha House) to the road junction at D 7 c 25 55. This was
a front of 750 yards, 900 yards from the British position. They
assembled on the tape laid in front of their position without any
difficulties. A, D and C Companies formed the assault wave, numbering,
from left to right. B Company was in reserve and 3 platoons of the
Royal Berkshire Regiment were to act as moppers-up. The battalion
advanced under an artillery barrage at 4.45am. A and D Companies,
closely followed by two platoons of B, reached their objectives
and consolidated. C Company, on the right with one platoon of B,
was held up owing to the failure of the rnoppers-up to take Pond
Farm. Both flanks were unsupported but it was decided to hold on.
At 4pm with the support of two platoons from the 2nd/5th Gloucestershire
Regiment, Pond Farm was taken. The battalion's casualties were three
officers and 26 other ranks killed, 5 officers and 74other ranks
wounded and 44 other ranks missing. Three of the missing men were
later reported to be prisoners. Commemorated, on the Tyne Cot Memorial;
Panel 97 to 98.
1st/14th Battalion London Regiment (London Scottish). (Also served
as 7250) Son of the late Mr. and Mrs. James Thompson. Lived at Dalston
near Carlisle. Age 38. Enlisted at Hackney. Killed in action 3Ist
August 1918 near Bullecourt. Proceeded
to France 15th July 1916
12.45am on the 31st of August the battalion moved from its bivouacs
in map-square U 13 d. They moved south-east along Stray Reserve
to arrive at their assembly positions by 3.30am. C and B Companies
formed the first wave. C were in Pelican Avenue, from U 26 b 6 5
to the south-east. B were in the same trench from U 2.6 b 6 5 to
the road at U 21 c 25 10. D Company were in support in Stray Reserve
in J 26 b. A Company were in reserve between D and the road at U
2C c 75 35. The trench-mortars had been disposed between A and C
Companies, with the battalion machine guns in Golliwog Lane . Not
much delay was experienced in capturing Station Redoubt when the
attack was launched at 5.15am. The Germans had already withdrawn
along Railway Reserve and to the south-east. Some casualties were
caused by the British barrage falling short. At 6.30am Bullecourt
Avenue was reached and the battalion consolidated it as no further
progress was possible. The line held was from C 3 a 7 I to the railway
at U 27 d. At 7.30am they made contact with the troops on the right
flank. The two tanks, which should have supported the attack, had
failed to appear. The German counter-barrage began shortly after
zero-hour and lasted until 6.45am. It was then largely quiet after
8am, except for a brief barrage between 3 and 4pm. The right flank
of the battalion was exposed owing to the failure of the 1st/4th
Battalion London Regiment's attack. At 9am A Company were moved
up from reserve to Station Redoubt and the machine guns came up
to Pelican Avenue. The day was spent in consolidating the position.
About 2pm a party of Germans were discovered in Railway Reserve
but were cleared by 5.15pm, with 22 prisoners being taken. German
snipers and machine gun were active and communications were maintained
by runner. The enemy shelled Longatte, Ecoust and Station Redoubt
but no serious attack was made. They lost 11 other ranks killed,
one officer and 54 other ranks wounded and 5 other ranks missing.
Buried in HAc Cemetery; Ecoust-St-Mein ; Plot 2, Row D, Grave 8.
2nd/4th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Son of 'Mr. and Mrs. George To ml in of Addington Cottages. Enlisted
at Aylesbury 21st August 1914. Age 22. Died
of wounds 13th September 1918 at Aire.
the 12th of September the battalion was involved in a local operation
to capture Junction Post, near Laventie. Two platoons of C Company
were detailed, with three from A, to carry out the task. Zero hour
was at 5.15am and the wire was successfully crossed; the objective
nearly being reached on both flanks. When the flank platoon of A
Company became held up Corporal Wilcox went forward and knocked
out four machine guns with his section. For his actions here Corporal
Wilcox was awarded the Victoria Cross. Most of the men’s rifles
and Lewis guns became clogged with mud and, despite Corporal Wilcox’s
actions, the attack failed and the right flank withdrew. Two officers
had been wounded and one was missing. Seven other ranks were killed,
twenty-two wounded, eighteen were missing and one man was reported
missing. Buried in Aire Communal Cemetery; Plot 4, Row D, Grave
7th. Battalion Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. Born in Southwark.
Killed in action 1th April 1916 near Pilckem. Enlisted in the Regiment
on the 30th of January 1896 from the 4th (Militia) Battalion East
Surrey Regiment. Served in India from the 1st of December 1897 until
the 21st of December 1900, when he went to Ceylon, where he stayed
until the 30th of June 1901. He then returned home, before going
on the reserve after seven years' service. He left the reserve at
the end of January 1912. During this period he served as Private
A/4939. He held the India General Service Medal with two clasps;
Punjab frontier 1897-98 and Tirah 1897-98. He re-enlisted in the
Regiment in September 1914 at Oxford.
the 11th of April 1916 the battalion was holding the trenches in
front of Brielen. They were disposed in the line from trench D22
to E28 and the support line. The enemy shelled the trenches with
guns and mortars throughout the day. The bombing post north east
of E28 was cut off from the rest of the trench. Line Germans then
made the first of four attacks. It was destroyed by enfilade fire
from the end of E28. The second attack was broken up by shrapnel
fire. The third attack was launched on E25 and 26. About 40 Germans
advanced from C 14 a 4 2. They attacked the bombing post between
the two trench points. Five Germans got past E26, but were bombed,
out by a sergeant. One party of Germans were driven out from between
the two posts. Total German casualties were estimated at 30. Two
men were captured in E26, while digging another man out. In addition
to these men the battalion lost some 60 men killed wounded and missing.
The battalion War Diary records that Sergeant Treadway was wounded
on this day. Commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial; Panel 20.
Wendover Magazine of September 1916 reported:
expressed our fears in a former issue that Sergeant A Treadway,
our brisk and cheerful postman had paid the great sacrifice.
was reported wounded and missing at Ypres on April 11th 1916. He
was serving as a Sergeant in the DCLI, and his friend, Sergeant
Kelly, of the same Regiment, reported that he saw brave Treadway
knocked over by a sandbag hurled at him by the explosion of a shell,
He was moved to a dressing station, which was afterwards shelled
and completely destroyed. The Red Cross Society has carefully searched
all hospitals, and the German Red Cross Society has failed to trace
him in all the German lists. The War Office has presumed his death,
and made arrangements to pay a pension to his sorrowing wide and
four little children the eldest of these only being eight years
old. We feel sure that many people who used to welcome Treadway’s
businesslike and punctual knock will deeply sympathise with his
wife, and her mother, sister and the family. Treadway had the fighting
instinct early in life, for at the age of 15 he put down a false
age and enlisted in his famous Regiment, the DCLI. He spent seven
years with the Colours and nine on the Reserve, early four years
of his service were in India. In the campaigns against the warlike
hillsmen of North-West India, the Punjab, and the Tirah, he won
the “India” medal and two clasps.
wore the cross-guns and was Lance-Corporal during this period and
became assistant gymnastic instructor, and was well known in his
Regiment for his running, swimming and lightweight boxing. In amateur
dramatics he liked best to impersonate a lady character.
returning to civil life he became a postman at Victoria and six
years ago he was transferred to Wendover at his own request. Pigeon
flying was now his hobby, and he won many prizes at Chelsea, Aylesbury
and with the Reading Federation.
September 1914 he re-enlisted and linked up with his 'old love1,
becoming a Sergeant the next sprint. He spent most of his time at
the butts instructing recruits, and had scarcely been in the Ypres
zone a month when he met his fate.
his last letter he gives an interesting account of the making of
a deep approach and listening post only 45 yards from the German
trenches. The enemy (Fritz') was busy shelling them, also machine-guns
and trench mortars peppering them.
Private 2771 1st/1st
Buckinghamshire Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light
Infantry. Born in Bridgevvater. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Killed in
action 21st July 1916 near Pozieres. Went
to France on the 6th of May 1916, joining C Company on the 29th.
the 19th of July the battalion was in billets in Bouzincourt. At
5pm they marched out, through Albert, and took over bivouacs in
map square W 30 a. On the 20th they received orders to participate
in the attack of 48th Division. The battalion's objective was the
German front line between X 3 b 1 1 and X 3 d 2 8. They assembled
in Sickle Trench (X 9 b to X 3 c and d) and formed up on a tape
100 yards in front of the trench at 2.30am on the 21st. C Company
was on the right, A on the left, B in support and D in reserve.
At 2.35am the Germans put up white flares and opened a heavy machine
gun fire. The British barrage opened at 2.43am, two minutes early,
and without any apparent affect on the German machine guns. When
the barrage lifted after two minutes it was not possible to press
the attack home owing to the volume of German fire. Only one corporal
and six men were seen to enter the enemy line. Casualties were very
heavy. Four officers and eight other ranks were milled, four officers
and 96 men were wounded, one officer was wounded and 41 other ranks
were missing. Commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial; Pier 10, Faces
A and D.
Private 9212 R
Company, 1st Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
Born in Wendover. Enlisted at High Wycornbe. Died 2bth July 1915
battalion was billeted in a granary on the right bank of the Jahaleh
canal in Amarah. During the morning of the 28th of July, he died
from dysentery. At 5.30pm a party paraded to bury him. On the way
to the cemetery one man went down with heat stroke and had to be
carried back to hospital. As the burial proceeded another man collapsed
into the grave on top of the body. On the way back to camp a third
man collapsed and had to be carried back on the burial stretcher.
Commemorated on the Basra Memorial; Panels 2.6 and 43. The
Commonwealth War Graves Commission and Soldiers Died erroneously
record his name as Wills
Wendover Magazine of August 1915 reported:
month we print the photograph of Private H Wells, of the Oxford
and Bucks Light Infantry, who died in the Persian Gulf, as a result
of sun fever. He had been several years in the Army, and at the
time of the outbreakof the war was stationed with his Regiment in
India. He had been fighting for some months in the Persian Gulf
against the forces of the Turks when he was struck down. We honour
this brave soldier who dies fighting for his country and our sincerest
sympathy goes out to his father and mother in Scrubwood.
2nd Battalion Grenadier Guards. Born in Wendover. Enlisted at Willesden.
in action 18th March 1916 near Potijze.
the 18th of March the battalion was at Camp M near Poperinghe. At
6pm they marched into the town and entrained, detraining near Ypres
Asylum. They had been delayed for some minutes at Valmertinghe by
German shelling. The battalion then marched up to the line east
of Potijze village. Number 3 Company took the left sector; Number
4 the right; Number 1 was in support and Number 2 in reserve. Battalion
HQ was in Potijze Wood. The relief was completed by I0pm. The transport
lines were placed north of the Valmertinghe -Poperinghe road. There
was very little shooting and plenty of light. During the relief
the battalion lost one man killed and one slightly wounded but remaining
at duty. Buried in Potijze Burial Ground; Row E, Grave 10.
Wendover Magazine of April 1916 reported:
we go to press we hear that another Wendover lad has laid down his
life for his country. Private T Wells of the Grenadier Guards, the
son of Mr John Wells, of Dean Cottage, was killed in action on March
19th. He is the eighth Wendover hero to be killed in this war. He
was only 21 years of age and had been a long time at the front.
His last visit home was in Decembedr, when he came back fron France
news was conveyed to Mr Wells in a moving letter from the Chaplain
to the Grenadier Guards. The letter is dated March 21st, two days
after Tom Wells died facing the foe:-
MR WELLS:- This letter will bring you the very sad news of the death
of your gallant boy, who was ki8lled in action on the 19th. I buried
him in a little cemetery near the firing line and his body is surrounded
by a band of heroes who, like him, have laid down their lives for
their country. May God comfort you in your great sorrow and give
him rest and peace and joy and light in the bright land to which
he has gone.
in great sympathy
Chaplain, 2nd Grenadier Guards
died a hero’s death, but it would be idle to pretend that
in the first shock of their affliction his parents can find much
in this thought to assuage the bitterness of their grief. But in
after years, when Time has healed the wound – when they see
that we keep his name, and those of the other Wendover men who have
fallen, honoured among us – perhaps the thought of having
been the parents of such a son will bring some happiness. Meanwhile,
our deepest sympathy goes out to Mr and Mrs Wells.
Private 30641 1st
Battalion Worcestershire Regiment. Born in Wendover. Lived in Kensington.
Enlisted at Stroud. Killed in action 4th March 1917 near Bouchavesnes.
the 3rd of March the battalion took over Bouchavesnes Sector North.
At 5.30am on the 4th they attacked the German line east of the village
in conjunction with the 2nd Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment
and the 2nd Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment. Three companies:
A, C and D, formed the attack wave; B Company being in support.
The attack was quite successful after some fierce bombing in parts.
Pallas and Fritz Trenches were captured, along with two machine
guns and 100 prisoners. Throughout the action the enemy kept up
a heavy barrage on the position and the surrounding communication
trenches. A counter-attack was beaten off by rifle fire and the
Lewis gun sections. German parties moving up from Moislaines were
also dispersed. Casualties were fairly heavy. Amongst the officers
5 were killed, 4 wounded and 1 missing, Forty-four other ranks were
killed, 170 wounded and 11 missing. Commemorated on the Thiepval
Memorial; Pier 5, Face A and Pier 6, Face C.
2nd/1st Buckinghamshire Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry. Son of Herbert and Emily Edith Food of Mill Cottage,
Aylesbury Road. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Age 18. Killed in action
I9th July 1916 near Laventie. For
an account of the action in which he was killed see the entry for
Cecil Dell. Commemorated on the Loos Memorial; Panels 83 to 85.
1st/1st Buckinghamshire Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Light Infantry. Elder son of George Woodward of Aylesbury Road.
Born in Peckham. Enlisted at Aylesbury. Age 18. Killed in action
2Ist July 1916 near Pozieres. Went to France on the 6th of May 1916,
joining A Company on the 29th. For an account of the action in which
he was killed, see the entry for Charles Warner. Commemorated on
the Thiepval Memorial; Pier 10, Faces A and D.
Wendover Magazine of August 1916 reported:
we go to pres news reaches us – news that seems almost incredible
- that Reggie Woodward has been killed. It seems only yesterday
that he left Wendover, having at last succeeded, after many failures
to pass the doctor, in joining the colours.
Woodward wasa member of the C.L.B. when the war broke out. He was
noted for his very high sense of duty and an extraordinary quality
of determination. He wanted to get on in life , and was prepared
to do the work necessary. We remember how at our instigation he
took up boxing. Somehow or other he lacked the instinct to be a
good boxer, but this did not prevent him from trying. When the Wendover
Company boxed the Aylesbury Company, Reggie Woodward played his
part. He had to meet a boy much stronger and more skilful than himself;
he received a most tremendous hammering – never had such black
eyes been seen before in Wendover – but he took it all without
flinchingor without losing his temper, and never groused or grumbled.
This was characteristic of Reggie Woodward – to make up his
mind to do something and go through with it.
1 June, 2013