Excerpts from the Book

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…………………………posted to the 1st Bn in France on 04/01/15.  On the 12/04/15 he was awarded 28 days Field Punishment No.1 but must have been released early as at Ypres on 07/05/15 Frederick was hit in the head by a piece of shrapnel and knocked unconscious for about 4 hours, evacuated to England to Winchester Military Hospital, and subsequently discharged 20/07/15…………………………

…………………………reported as missing from 26/10/17 but then his mother was informed that he was actually a prisoner of war. However when she wrote it was discovered that it was not Leonard. …………………………The next information she received through the War Office was that Leonard had been released, had arrived in England and would be in Romsey in but a few days. This was quickly followed by another letter apologising for an error and that it wasn’t Leonard but another man………………………… It was late 1919 before Leonard was eventually identified as having been killed, aged 23 on the ground of the 26/10/17 attacks and was buried in the Hooge Crater Cemetery…………………………

…………………………His citation reads; “For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during an enemy attack. When his platoon was greatly reduced in numbers he collected a large number of  scattered men of other units and led them into action in a most skilful manner. By his initiative and his able handling of his men he held up the enemy attack and inflicted heavy casualties on them”…………………………

…………………………“Allow me first on behalf of myself and other comrades to offer you and your children the deepest commiseration in the loss you have sustained in the death of your husband who was killed about 5.30 last Sunday morning. He was my closest companion and we have worked together since we came out to Turkey. He was appreciated by all ranks for his straightforward and honest way. He was out with me all night, and we were helping the wounded in, when he met his death. He was hit by a bullet which caused instantaneous death. He always spoke most affectionately of his wife and children and met his death like the gentleman he was, he laid down his life helping others. Please have this letter published in your local paper as he was very fond of it, and had showed me a letter that had been inserted previously”…………………………

…………………………resident of Portersbridge Street and another reservist he was also mobilised at the outbreak of war. He was sent to the Western Front in September 1914 where he took part in the Retreat from Mons, where he was wounded. He was later in action at 1st and 2nd Ypres. He was later transferred to the east and served in the Dardanelles and Egypt. He was wounded three times during the course of the war…………………………

…………………………”I landed in France only 16 days after enlisting. I belong to a corps which does most of its work right behind the firing line, but as I go up into Belgium almost every day I have opportunities to see something of the oppression and misery caused to the innocent non-combatants and I trust that England will never cease to be thankful that she has so far been saved from the horrors of invasion. I am writing this in a quiet French village 20 or more miles behind the fighting line, and it is difficult to believe that only that distance away men are engaged in a death struggle for what we believe to be right against wrong. One can only hope and pray that out of this awful strife may come a lasting peace”…………………………

…………………………”I have also the letter which you sent to me in January while I was in France. I do think I shall be fit again to go out to the Front, as I had my thigh badly fractured on the third day of the battle of Neuve Chapelle, though I should like to be out again, as I know for a fact we want every man who is eligible to fight. We still have a great task to perform”. He spent six months in hospital but was discharged from the army as unfit in November 1915. However after two years of civilian life he felt sufficiently recovered to re-enlist. Unable to rejoin his old regiment he enlisted into the Royal Flying Corps as a clerk and, after six days leave in January 1918, during which he married, he proceeded back to France…………………………

…………………………”I am deeply grieved to have to tell you that your son was dangerously wounded in the trenches yesterday afternoon. He was carried back by a party of stretcher bearers but did not live long enough to reach the dressing station. He suffered very little pain and passed away quite peacefully. This news will come as a terrible shock to you so very soon after your son had obtained his wish and taken his place in the line”…………………………

…………………………maltster at the brewery and prior to that by Mr Oram of Orams Drug Company in The Market Place for 7/8 years.  He was also a Corporal in the Territorials. Soon after enlisting in 1915 he was promoted to sergeant and went to India with his battalion. After his 12 month term of service had expired he returned to England and enlisted again for the duration of the war. On being drafted to France he was transferred to the South Wales Borderers. William was wounded on 23/06/17 by shrapnel in the head and right leg which required an operation to remove. Upon recovery and without any leave he returned to the firing line…………………………

…………………………”The eight of us and our Captain got two teams of six horses and dashed off under a dreadful fire from rifles and machine [sic] and shrapnel guns. We got to the exposed part of the field where the guns were, limbered them up and were off back with them when the German infantry had advanced to within 150 yards of us. Five of us came back safely. The Germans were firing from the hip and a lot of shots went over our heads.”…………………………

…………………………previously served seven years as a Senior Stoker and transferred to the reserve forces in 1913. He was employed by the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company before being recalled in 1914. William was posted to HMS Tipperary, a destroyer with the Grand Fleet, as a Stoker 1st Class. He was killed in action on 01/06/16 when the Tipperary went down with all but two hands at Jutland…………………………

…………………………to France in July 1916 and wounded on the Somme on 07/08/16. He was wounded a second time at Arras on 16/04/17 receiving gunshot wounds to the face and right thigh. He was evacuated to England to Reading Hospital where he stayed until September. He returned to the Western Front and fought in several more engagements, being wounded for a third time, until taken prisoner in May 1918. He was reported as missing but was taken to Germany and employed in a flour mill at Morsenburg…………………………

…………………………awarded the MC on 16/11/16 “For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He tended the wounded under intense fire, displaying great courage and determination. Later, although wounded, he stuck to his post.” ………………………… received a Bar to his MC in 1918 …………………………this citation reads “He attended to the wounded under heavy fire during several days’ operations. He advanced with the leading troops in an attack, and brought in many wounded men from in front of the lines. He set an inspiring example of coolness and skill.”…………………………killed on 11/10/18 and is buried in Caudry British Cemetery…………………………

…………………………arrived in France on 23/03/16 and was soon in action receiving GSWs on 08/09/16 to the left arm and buttocks. He was evacuated back to England and after he recovered returned to France on 20/03/17 but was wounded again in the buttocks on 18/05/17 so was again evacuated back to England…………………………

…………………………”killed instantaneously by a shell in the trenches on the night of the 14th of this month.  Although he had been with us such a short time, it was quite long enough to show us what sort of man he was. He was one of the best and keen to get on, which he doubtless would have done. He was buried by the chaplain in a cemetery for British soldiers behind the firing line. Up to the moment of writing no personal possessions of his have been found, but if any are found I will see that they are sent to you. If there is anything I can do for you, I shall be glad if you will let me know”…………………………

…………………………combat that took place during an air raid on London on 19/05/18; “after exchanging shots the British machine seemed to be literally pumping bullets into the German machine. The excitement lasted 25 minutes, Stagg firing 400 bullets into the German Gotha before it was set on fire. Suddenly a little ball of flame at the side of the German machine grew larger, as the machine came lower and lower, until the flames began to devour it, the three men jumped out and were killed, and the machine crashed to earth in flames.”…………………………

…………………………previously served 16 years in the cavalry and had fought at Chitral and in the Boer war. At the outbreak of hostilities he was a 46 year old family and was working for LSW Railways as a Tuber. He volunteered in 02/09/14 and after training was drafted overseas. He arrived in Egypt on 8/01/16 and was discharged so he could be re-enlisted into the RE on 08/04/16 in Cairo. He was posted to the Railway Operating Div., and trained as a guard.  He was eventually posted to France on 27/06/16. He was demobilized in 1919 already holding the Queens South Africa Medal with clasps “Cape Colony”, “Orange Free State”, Transvaal” “South Africa 1901” and “South Africa 1902”, the Kings South Africa Medal with clasps “South Africa 1901” and “South Africa 1902” and was entitled to the British War Medal & the Victory Medal.…………………………