Luton

Private Bertram Wood

Pte Bertram Wood, 41662, 8th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment, died as a prisoner of war in the Crossen Camp hospital at Kaehmen in Germany on October 22nd, 1918. The cause of death was influenza – inflammation of the lungs, as his Red Cross report stated. He was aged 29.

Company Sergeant Major Alec Cook

Company Sgt Major Alec Cook, 9119, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action at Albert in France on August 20th, 1918, an action in which he was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

The medal was eventually collected by his younger sister Elsie, of 57 Frederic Street, Luton. Lieut-Col Tighe made the presentation at Biscot Camp on January 26th, 1919.

Private William Johnson

Pte William Johnson, 269206, 1st Battalion Hertfordshire Regiment, was killed in action on April 28th, 1918, during the German spring offensive. He was aged 33.

William's death appears to have gone unrecorded in local newspapers, although he is commemorated on the Luton Roll of Honour and in the Book of Life compiled at Luton Parish Church.

Sergeant Arthur Ernest Kennedy (Jamieson)

Sgt Arthur Ernest Kennedy (Jamieson), 29683, 2nd Battalion Wiltshire Regiment (ex-20841 Devonshire Regiment), died on October 26th, 1918, while being held as a prisoner of war in Germany.

No report of his death appeared at the time, but in an earlier letter from him to Henrietta Jamieson (described as his stepmother) at 2 Edward Street, Luton, he said he was then being held in Cassel (Kassel) and he was going on all right but the chief thing he wanted was “bread and something to spread on it – a small tin of dripping would do fine”.

Sapper John William Hobbs

Sapper John William Hobbs, 522405, 486th Field Company Royal Engineers, died of pneumonia in the 87th General Hospital in Egypt on November 27th, 1918. He was aged 26 and had enlisted in January 1915.

At the time of the 1911 Census he was living with parents Alfred and Sarah and four brothers and three sisters at 339 Hitchin Road, Round Green. He was listed as a 19-year-old iron moulder.

Gunner Percival Chase Nicholls

Gunner Percival (Percy) Chase Nicholls, 220919, 291st Brigade Royal Field Artillery, died from pneumonia in the 51st Casualty Clearing Station at Tournai in Belgium on November 26th, 1918.

Two days previously, parents Walter and Lilla Nicholls had received a postcard from their second son to say to was unwell but hoped to soon mend. Chest trouble developed rapidly, resulting in his death.

Private Henry Bunyan MM

Pte Henry Bunyan MM, 33018, 6th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment, was killed in action in the battle of the Lys in Flanders on April 26th, 1918, when the Allies were about to halt the German spring offensive of 1918.

He had joined the 5th Bedfords (3666) just before the outbreak of war and was mobilised when hostilities began. After being drafted to France he fought at Ypres, Arras, Messines and on the Somme. He gained his Military Medal for bravery in the field in October 1917.

Driver Walter Shane

Sapper Walter ('Dick') Shane, 522394, 486th Field Company Royal Engineers, died from bronchitis and pneumonia in hospital in Egypt on November 22nd, 1918. He was aged 21 and single.

Born in Luton in April 1897, Walter had had joined the Bedfordshire Regiment in August 1914 but was later transferred to the Royal Engineers, with whom he served in the East for over three years until being invalided to hospital in Cairo.

Private William Cherry

Pte William Cherry, 34425, 2nd Battalion Essex Regiment, was killed in action on April 9th, 1917. Sadly, no reports about him were carried in local newspapers at the time.

He is commemorated on the Luton Roll of Honour, with an address at 22 Elizabeth Street, Luton. His military records show he was born in Wilstead, Beds, in around 1887, and left a widow, Edith.

The Green's Brewery Roll of Honour carries the name of a W. Cherry, an employee who died in the war, and a W. Cherry was also named on the Christ Church Roll of Honour.

Sergeant George Edward Thomas Barrett

Sgt George Edward Thomas Barrett, 200464, 1/5th Bedfordshire Regiment, died in Egypt from malaria on November 19th, 1918. He was aged 23, the eldest son of George and Amelia Barrett, of 32 South Road, Luton.

George Barrett had joined the Beds Territorials in 1914 and fought at Gallipoli. From there he was sent to Egypt and came through much fighting there with minor wounds from shrapnel splinters.

Private George Simpson

Pte George Simpson, 29812, 7th Battalion Royal West Surrey Regiment, died in France on November 18th, 1918, from wounds sustained in action nine days previously.

George had previously served with the Royal Engineers (1346) from 1914 but was discharged as medically unfit in March 1916. He was recalled to the colours and had served with the West Surreys for seven months before his death.

A chaplain wrote to widow Lilian at her family home at 12 Bolton Road, Luton, that her husband had been buried with full military honours at Rouen in France.

Gunner Samuel de Vere Kingham

Gunner Samuel de Vere Kingham, 285092, 122nd Anti-Aircraft Section Royal Garrison Artillery, died from dysentery in hospital at Alexandria in Egypt on November 18th, 1918. He had been in hospital for eight weeks and had been passed by the medical board to return home after 14 months service in Egypt.

Born in Aylesbury in 1887, Samuel (plus two brothers and four sisters) was living with his widowed mother Mary at 124 Maple Road, Luton, at the time of the 1911 Census. Samuel was then described as a bill poster.

Private Frederick William Kirby

Pte Frederick William Kirby, 18560, 54th Divisional Army Cyclist Corps, died from malaria in the 17th General Hospital at Alexandria, Egypt, on November 16th, 1918. He had been admitted dangerously ill on October 15th, appeared to be out of danger by November 3rd, but relapsed on November 9th, leading to his death a week later.

Gunner George Stanley Percy Kingham

Gunner George Stanley Percy Kingham, 173474, 117th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, died in the 15th Casualty Clearing Station in France on the evening of November 13th, 1918 – two days after the armistice. He had been gassed by a German shell while in action at Ypres on November 9th.

Born in Luton in 1885, he was a son of master builder George and Cicely Jane Kingham, of Aldenham House, 2 Reginald Street, Luton. He had joined the R.F.A. voluntarily and was trained at Biscot Camp.

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