Pte Alfred Ernest Dyer, 10729, 6th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action in France on February 26th, 1917. He was aged 21.
In a letter to parents James William and Mary Ann, of Vale Cottage, Marsh Road, Leagrave, Sec-Lieut C. Reeling wrote that Pte Dyer's death was a painless one as he died instantly.
Pte Dyer was an old boy of Norton Road School who had revisited the school on December 18th, 1916 before returning to France the following month. He was wounded in the Big Push on the Somme of July 1916 and was in a Liverpool hospital for 17 weeks.
L-Cpl Alfred Warren, 8134, 1/2nd Battalion London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers), was killed in action on the Somme on September 23rd, 1916. He was the son of Frederick William Warren of and his wife Jane (nee Williams), of 3 Dunstable Road, Leagrave.
Born at Olton, near Solihull, Warks, in 1897, he enlisted in the Bedfordshire Regiment (3548) at the age of 17, but before going to France was transferred to the London Regiment.
Pte Arthur Dumpleton, 27845, 1st Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action on the Somme on September 25th, 1916.
Born in 1877 at Stopsley, he was a son of Daniel and Ann Dumpleton. He was living with his then widower father in Gardenia Avenue, Leagrave, at the time of the 1911 Census and, like his parent, had become a gamekeeper. Daniel was bailiff at Little Bramingham Farm in 1881 and gamekeeper at Wigmore Hall Farm in 1891, when the family lived at Ramridge End Cottage. Both father and son were gamekeepers at Little Bramingham Farm in 1901.
Pte Thomas Richard Buller, 18754, 6th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, died on September 5th, 1916, from wounds sustained on the Somme.
He was born in Banbury in 1888 and spent his life there until at least 1912, when he married Olive Annie L. Price there. His death seems to have gone unreported in the Luton Press, but the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website gives his wife's address as Aero Cottage, Oak [Oakley] Road, Leagrave, suggesting a possible link with the Hewlett & Blondeau aircraft factory.
Cpl Reginald Sydney Buckingham, 17597, 1st Battalion Oxford and Buck Light Infantry, was killed in action while serving in the Persian Gulf on April 6th, 1916. He was aged 22.
The son of Levi and Lily Buckingham, he was born in Tebworth in 1894, and in 1901 was living at 31 Stuart Street, Luton. In April 1914 he married Priscilla Ann Pateman and had a son, Aubrey Reginald, with whom he lived at Dorset Villa, Marsh Road, Leagrave.
Pte Ralph Stanley Lewin, 3875, 1/5th Bedfords, was killed in at action at Gallipoli on September 15th, 1915. He was aged 30 and left a widow, May, and one child, Hilda, aged six.
Mrs Lewin, of 54 Grange Road [now St Peter's Road], Luton, received official notification of his death in early October. Her husband was serving with the Machine Gun Section and was called into the first line after the fierce fighting in Gallipoli of August 15th. He had been an employee of Luton Corporation and was described as a bricklayer's labourer in the 1911 Census.
Pte Frank Wilson, 8940, 2nd Battalion, Wiltshire Regiment, died in the Military Hospital at South Tidworth, Hants, on September 15th, 1915, following wounds sustained while fighting at Neuve Chapelle. He was aged 21.
Pte Albert Edward Blaydon, 5073, 1/5th Bedfords, was killed in action at Gallipoli on August 16th, 1915. He was aged 18 and the youngest son of Sidney and Mary Lily Blaydon, of The Knapps, Toddington Road, Leagrave, and is commemorated on the Leagrave War Memorial.
Sapper Nathaniel John Fowler, 1511, 1st/2nd (North Midland) Field Company, Royal Engineers, died on April 21st, 1915, from abdomens wounds received in action on April 18th. Aged 31 and a native of Harpenden, he lived at Leagrave and left a widow and two children.
Sapper Fowler was the son of the late Mr James Fowler, a bootmaker, of Wheathampstead Road, Harpenden, and his widow, and had three brothers living in Harpenden.
Leagrave War Memorial, a monument to the men of Leagrave, Limbury and Biscot who gave their lives in World War One, was unveiled on the afternoon of Sunday, July 24th, 1921, by Lady Ludlow, of Luton Hoo, in front of a large crowd of people.
The memorial in Marsh Road is an obelisk 12 feet high standing on a square base and is built of Portland stone. It was designed by Mr Basil Deacon and built by Giddings and Son, of Luton.
Lance-Corporal William Albert Harfield, L/6446, a reservist serving with the 4th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London), died on September 21st, 1914, from wounds received in action.
Another reservist, Mr G. T. Denmark, of 78 Highbury Road, Luton, who was in the same hospital ward at Vailly, told Mrs Harfield that her 33-year-old husband had suffered terrible injuries, including the loss of both of his legs. Another friend was understood to have been by his side when he was wounded.
[As printed in the Luton News, January 3, 1957]
When the President of the Royal Aeronautical Society came to Luton to speak at the Luton branch’s annual dinner, he searched local and aviation records for some Luton aeronautical history. Luton News reporter Colin Cross began investigating, and with the help of Borough Librarian Mr F.M. Gardner and the secretary of the Luton branch of the society, he unearthed a forgotten chapter of yesteryear - the story of a gallant pioneering couple and a factory.
Ernest W.T. Groom was a member of the 2nd Battallion The Bedfordshire Regiment, and was killed on the 11th July 1916 during the attack on Trones Wood.
The advance started at 3:10 AM, and the advance was not spotted until the men were 400 yards from the enemy. At this moment, machine guns opened fire on the men and the battle began. The woodlands were so dense and the night so dark, that it became impossible to see more than 5 yards ahead.
Private Groom died alongside 5 Officers and 239 Other ranks.