30 March 2018


Richard Joseph Stocks was a distant relative on my "Culpin-side" and was born in Peterborough, then in Northamptonshire, in 1886, the second child and only son of Joseph and Betsy (nee Culpin).  Joseph was a solicitor's clerk in the town and Richard himself was working as a clerk on the railway by the 1911 census.

He enlisted in the 1st/5th Border regiment and, during his service, was awarded the Military Medal.  He died of wounds on 30 March1918, most likely at the 41st, 50th or 55th Casualty Clearing Stations and is buried in the Namps-au-Val cemetery.

We will remember them.

28 March 2018


Bertram Dimock was born in Stretham in 1890 and christened on 28 May in the village church of St James the same year.  Youngest of the four children of Joseph & Rebecca (nee Sennitt), he grew up in the village and in the 1911 census he was listed as a grocer's assistant.

By 1917 Bertram was living in Dalston, possibly tempted to the great metropolis by his brother Herbert who married in West Ham in 1907.  He married Elizabeth Sexton on 14 April that year, at St Philip, Dalston.

Bertram enlisted in the City of London Fusiliers in December 1917, signing up in Stratford, and was sent to France on 29 December that year.  He died on 28 March 1918 and is commemorated on the Arras Memorial.

We will remember them.

23 March 2018


Frank Staden was born in Cambridge in 1898, my second cousin twice removed.  Fifth of the twelve children of Alfred & Catherine (nee Derby), the family moved to the village of Steeple Bumpstead, just over the boundary into Essex,  and was there in the 1901 census where Alfred was a tailor.  Within a few years the family was back in Cambridge and Frank appears as a twelve-year old in the 1911 census. 

In 1915 Frank enlisted, joining the Suffolk Regiment as did so many of the lads from around here.  He served in France and was transferred to the Rifle Brigade and died one hundred years ago today, at the age of  19; later in the century this was to become the average age of US casualties in the Vietnam war, but somehow those who flocked to the colours in the Great War seemed to me to be much younger.

Frank has no known grave but is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial.

We will remember them.

9 March 2018


Thomas Henry Mace, to give him his full Sunday-best name, was born in 1898 in Mildenhall, Suffolk, fourth of the five children of Charles & Mary Ann (nee Fuller).  He grew up, along with parents and siblings, in Turnpike Road, Barton Mills and enlisted in the Suffolk Yeomanry.

He was transferred to the 5th Suffolks and was killed in action in Palestine one hundred years ago today.  He is buried in the Jerusalem War Cemetery in present-day Israel.

We will remember them.