Lieutenant Nelson Johnstone


Lieut Nelson Johnstone, 2/2nd Midland Brigade Field Ambulance, R.A.M.C., stationed at Kings Lynn, died suddenly at Cambridge while undergoing an operation at a military hospital.

An Irishman aged 41, he had at the time of the 1901 Census been living with his first wife Frances, whom he married in Ireland in 1898, and baby daughter Kathleen at 76 Wellington Street, Luton, while he was a physician and surgeon involved with the Luton Medical Institute in Waller Street.

Private Ernest White


Pte Ernest White, 20201, 23rd Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps, was killed in action in France on September 26th, 1915. He was aged 28 and lived at 109 Highbury Road, Luton.

He was in the RAMC when war broke out and was mobilised with his unit. He came home for the last time in September 1914 and went out to France the following month.

He left a wife, Mary, and three young children. Before the war he worked as a painter for Mr Jennings. He was well known among local footballers, being a member of the Silver Star FC.


Private Joseph Edward Betts


Pte Joseph Edward Betts, 1784, Eastern Mounted Brigade Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps, was killed by a bullet as he was about to board a lighter to take him to the Gallipoli beaches on October 8th*, 1915.

He was still on board the ship on which he he had set sail from England for the Dardanelles when he was killed. Commanding Officer Major William Archibald, who had been Luton's Medical Officer of Health, wrote to parents Joseph and Mary Jane Betts at 57 Ashton Road, Luton, with the news.

Private Ewart William Clark


Pte Ewart William Clark, 82, Royal Army Medical Corps, 54th East Anglian Casualty Clearing Hospital, was lost when the troopship Royal Edward was torpedoed off the island of Kandeloussa in the Aegean Sea by German submarine UB-14 on August 13th, 1915.

The son of Daniel and Emma Jane Clark, of 7 Park Road West [now Strathmore Avenue], Luton, he joined the RAMC the previous April. He was aged 17 and lived in Summer Street, Slip End, as a child.

Beech Hill Primary School

Today Beech Hill is a large multi cultural school serving approximately 750 pupils, it is popular and located near Luton town centre.

In WW1 it was used to house troops billeted in the local area. There are written reports of men from the North Midlands Division being billeted on and around the streets of Bury Park, as well as photographs of men outside these houses in uniform.

Beech Hill Primary appears to have been home to a cadre of men from the Royal Army Medical Corps, as seen on the photograph above.

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