2nd Bedfords

Private Thomas George James Smith


Private Thomas George James Smith, 15123, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action on the Somme on July 3rd, 1916. He was aged 23.

Born in 1892, he was the son of William Arthur and Margaret Rebecca Smith, of 62 Cardigan Street, Luton. At the time of the 1911 Census he was a straw hat dispatcher, with an older sister and a younger brother and sister living at home.


Private Horace Bleaney


Pte Horace Bleaney, 22762, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action at Trones Wood on the Somme on July 3rd, 1916. He left a widow and two boys.

He had enlisted in October 1915 and was trained at Landguard and Felixstowe before going to the Front the following June. Prior to joining up, he was employed by hat manufacturer Miss Pattie Longstaffe, of Guildford Street, Luton,

Private Harry Bacchus


Pte Harry Bacchus, 9272, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action near Maricourt, on the Somme, on June 29th, 1916. He was aged 29.

Pte Bacchus was employed by coal merchants John Facer and Son until about 1908, when he joined the 2nd Bedfords. Since then he had spent a considerable amount of time abroad, serving in Bermuda, Malta and South Africa. He had returned from Africa at the beginning of the war.

Corporal Henry Lewis Hill


Cpl Henry Lewis Hill, 10092, 2nd Battalion Beds Regiment, was killed in France on March 14th, 1916, when fragments of shell entered a cellar in which he and other men were sheltering. A second man was also killed while the remainder escaped unhurt.

Cpl Hill, who was 24, joined the Bedfords in 1912 and was serving with the 2nd Battalion in South Africa when war was declared. He had been in France since October 1914.

Private George William Rolph


Pte George William Rolph, 18924, 2nd Bedfordshire Regiment, is officially listed as killed in action in France on January 15th, 1916. A letter from the battlefield said he was killed by a shell while on sentry duty on January 13th.

An old boy of Queen Square School, he was the son of George and Maria Rolph, of 51 Beech Road, Luton. On leaving school he worked for the British Gelatine Co Ltd in New Bedford Road as a labourer and stayed with them until January 1915, when he enlisted. He was aged 28 and had served for four years in the Territorials.

Private Arthur Wallace Woodcroft


Pte Arthur Wallace Woodcroft, 18612, 2nd Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action in Flanders on November 27th, 1915. Some military records name him as Arthur Walter Woodcroft.

He was 28 years old and the son of Arthur and Emily Woodcroft. Married in April 1909, he left a widow, Beatrice Maud (nee Mitchell), and two children, Elsie Maud (born December 24th, 1910) and Ronald Arthur (born November 12, 1913). The family lived at 66 May Street, Luton.

Private Herbert John Clarke


Father-of-ten Pte Herbert John Clarke, 3/8664, 2nd Bedfords, was killed in action at Loos in France on September 27th*, 1915. He was aged 39 and a labourer at White Hill Farm, Stopsley.

A native of Offley born in the summer of 1876, he worked at the farm for Mr Allingham and lived in a cottage opposite Lilley Church.

Corporal George Brown


Cpl George Brown, 9592, 2nd Bedfords, was killed in action in Flanders on October 7th, 1915. He was the 26-year-old son of George and Elizabeth Brown, of 65 Albert Road, Luton.

Born in Offley in 1889, he had worked for hat manufacturer Frank Harden in Bute Street, but became a soldier over five years before his death and went to South Africa with the 2nd Bedfords. He remained there for four years and returned to England on the outbreak of war. He was drafted abroad almost immediately.

Private George Jenkins


Pte George Jenkins, 18252, 2nd Battalion Beds Regt, died on September 30th, 1915, from wounds sustained two days earlier in the Battle of Loos. Some military records suggest he resided in Stopsley, but Press reports at the time described him as from Hockliffe.

Born in Newbury, Berks, on November 5th, 1893, Pte Jenkins married Florence Rose Bleaney, the daughter of Walter and Annie Bleaney, from High Street, Upper Houghton Regis [now High Street North, Dunstable], in early 1914. Their daughter, Florence May, was born in July of that year.

Private Herbert Victor Smith


Pte Herbert Victor Smith, 17938, D Company, 2nd Battalion Beds Regt, was killed in action in the Battle of Loos on September 25th, 1915.

Born in Luton on June 6th, 1898, he spent most of his life in Flitwick, living with his family in Church End as a three-year-old at the time of the 1901 Census. The family later lived in Chapel Road.

He was the son of straw hat goods factory manager/manufacturer Arthur Smith and the late Mrs Rebecca Swales Smith.

Private Albert Newbury


Pte Albert Newbury, 18360, 2nd Battalion Bed Regt, was killed in action at the Battle of Loos in Flanders on August 25th, 1915. He had been reported missing and it was not until August 1916 that official notification of his death was received. He was aged 24.

A native of Luton, he lived at 35 Burr Street, Luton, and had married Mary Kirkwood (nee Penman) on July 26th, 1913, and the couple had one child, Alexander, born 1914. Pte Newbury was employed as an iron founder working on gas stoves pipes at the Diamond Foundry before he joined the Bedfords at the outbreak of war.

Private Albert Hawkes


Pte Albert Hawkes, 13777, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, died as a result of wounds received in action on his 30th birthday - September 29th, 1915.

He was the husband of Louisa Elizabeth Hawkes, then living at 8 Tavistock Street, Luton, with two young children - Lily aged four and two-year-old Albert.

Official notification of Pte Hawkes' death arrived in October 1915, saying he had died from gunshot wounds to the abdomen. He had enlisted on September 5th, 1914, and had been in the firing line for six months.

Private John Crew


Pte John Crew, 10479, 2nd* Battalion Beds Regiment, died on May 17th, 1915, from wounds sustained at the battle of Festubert.

He was included on a list of men who had enlisted from the Luton Hoo mansion and estate compiled by Lady Wernher's agent, James Baker. It was published in The Luton News on July 8th, 1915, by which time two were listed as wounded and Pte Crew as killed.

Sergeant Alfred Albert Camp


Sgt Alfred Albert Camp, 9127, 2nd Battalion Beds Regiment, died on June 19th, 1915, from wounds sustained in action. He was born in 1886 and his family home was at 61 Hastings Street, Luton.

The son of George William and Sarah Camp and one of ten children, Sgt Camp has served with the 2nd Battalion for about eight years and went to the Front in October 1914. The official notice of his death received from the Regimental Record Office said he had received gunshot wounds in the back, arm and head.

Private Henry Lyon


Pte Henry Lyon, 3/7723, 2nd Battalion Beds Regiment, was killed in action on June 16th, 1915, near Givenchy. He was aged 42.

The iron moulder from Church Street, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland, had possibly moved to Luton to work. He is included on the Luton Roll of Honour with an address at 27 Wimbourne Road, Luton.



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