Read, Charles Henry. Died 11th Apr 1917

Charles Henry Read was born in Norwich in Norfolk in around 1885. He was the son of Charles and Alice Read. Charles and Alice Green did not marry until 1902, so Charles Henry may have been registered as Green. In 1901 Charles Henry was aged 16, a shoe cutter. His father is listed as a retired Baker living in Barn Road, Norwich. In 1906 Charles Henry married Edith Spooner and in 1911 they were living at 35 Goldsmith St, Dereham Road, Norwich. He was a boot maker and they had a son Charles William, aged 4.

Some time after this, Charles Henry moved to Rugby, to work at B.T.H. in the Controller Dept. He must have signed up towards the start of the way in the 1st Bn, Warwickshire Regiment (Private no. 3382) and landed in France on 4th May 1915.

From 1st April the Royal Warwicks was at Camblain-Chatelaine involved in training. On the 7th, there was a route march to Bethon-sart, continuing to “X” camp the next day. By 11th April they were in Dug-outs S of Athies

War Diaries of 1st Bn, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
11 April 1917

2-3 a.m. Conference at Brigade Head Quarters and orders issued that 10th Brigade will attack at 12 noon Operation Order attached.

8.30 a.m. Battalion moved  off to W. of Fampoux and arrived 10.00 a.m.

11.20 a.m. Battalion moved up to Assembly position on Sunken Road on E. edge of Fampoux and arrived 12 noon.

A & C Coys attack on 2 Coy frontage of 500x per Coy and B Coy follow in near as carriers.

12 noon Attack commences and 1st R. Irish Fus. and 2nd Seaforth Highlanders start going forward

12.10 p.m. A & C Coys followed by B Coy follow these Battalions, our Battalion supporting 1st R. Irish Fus. The enemy shelled our Assembly positions heavily and we had many casualties before starting.

The enemy’s M. Gun fire held up our attack almost from the start and the Brigade consolidated a line about 400x in front of the Assembly position.

Both Brigades on our right and left were held up also by M. Gun fire.

Enemy put up a heavy barrage on Assembly positions and vicinity.

Battalion dug in and held a line from Huddue Trench at H.18.a.0.9 to H.18.b,1,3 with Seaforth Highlanders on left and 1st R Irish Fus on right.

Enemy fairly quiet at night. Very cold and snow.

Officer casualties are given 2nd Lieuts 2 killed, 1 wounded and missing, 5 wounded.

Heavy shelling of Fampoux continued for several days and on the 20th Apr, the Battalion was relieved by the 8th Lincolnshire Regt.

Total casualties for the period 9th to 21st Incl.
Killed                             2 Officers            43 Other Ranks (includes 10 died of wds since)
Wounded and missing 1 Officer             – Other Ranks
Wounded                     5 Officers            173 Other Ranks
Missing                      – Officers              33 Other Ranks
Missing believed wounded -Officers       1 Other Ranks.

Both Joseph Vincent Cleaver and Charles Henry Read died on 11th April, probably in this action.

Charles Henry Read was buried at Fampoux British Cemetery.

He is also listed on the B.T.H. War Memorial.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

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Read, Herbert Henry. Died 9th Mar 1917

Herbert Henry READ was born in 1890 in Rugby and baptised on 23 April 1890 at St Andrew’s Church, Rugby.   He was the son of Silvanus, b.1863, and Sarah, b.1867 née Getliff, Read of 87 Wood Street, Rugby. He had a younger sister, Elsie Winifred Read, born 23 July 1894 in Rugby, who died in Rugby in 1971.

In 1891 the family was at 19 Oxford Street, Rugby; by 1901 they had moved to 11 Wood Street, Rugby, and by 1911 they were at 87 Wood Street, Rugby, he was a Railway Clerk. Herbert’s father died on 13 November 1916 not so very long before his son Hubert.

At some date, possibly earlier in the war, Herbert enlisted at Rugby in the 1/6th Territorial Battalion of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment as Private No.242564.

The 1/6th Royal Warwicks was stationed at Thorp Street, Birmingham at the outbreak of war. The Battalion was part of the Warwickshire Brigade of the South Midland Division and later moved to Chelmsford. On 22 March 1915 they mobilised for war and landed at Havre where on 13 May 1915 the formation became the 143rd Brigade, 48th (South Midland) Division and engaged in various actions on the Western Front.

In common with many Royal Warwicks Medal Cards for those who went to France after 1915, and were thus not eligible for the 1915 Star, there is no date given for his ‘entry into theatre’. It is assumed that Herbert was with the Battalion when it mobilised.

During 1916 the Division was involved with the Battle of Albert, the Battle of Bazentin Ridge, the Battle of Pozieres Ridge, the Battle of the Ancre Heights, and the Battle of the Ancre,[1] although the 1/6th were probably not involved in all of these actions.

The New Year 1917 brought a period of severe weather conditions on the Somme which led to an unofficial ‘truce’ between the two sides, although routine actions in the trenches carried on. In February the Battalion alternated between duty in the trenches at Biaches, on the west bank of the Somme, and the reserve at Eclusier some six miles to the west of Biaches and the front line.

On 1 March 1917 the Battalion was again ‘In the Reserve’ at ‘Eclusier’. They were there for a week, but still had casualties when providing men for working parties. On 7 March the Battalion received eight ‘OR’ [Other Rank] reinforcements and that night moved back to their ‘old section’ positions at Biaches where they relieved the 1/8th Worcesters. On the evening of 8 March, …

‘Raid carried out by A Co at 9 p.m. Bombardment by heavies for 10 minutes before zero – Barrage from zero to +10 then forming a box – party in trenches 15 mins – 3 prisoners (one died) & one machine gun – estimate over 30 Germans killed. Casualties OR 1 killed, 2 wounded & missing – 13 wounded (one remained at duty).’

On 9 March the Battalion was still ‘In trenches. Casualties OR 3K 5W.’ One of those three killed was Herbert Henry Read and whilst his ‘C’ Company had not been involved in the raid the night before, he was probably killed by retaliatory shelling the day after the raid. The two other soldiers who were also killed that day were probably Corporal A E Bayliss MM, No.240105; and Lance Corporal J Baker, No.242855.

War Diary, 16th Royal Warwickshire Rgiment

War Diary, 16th Royal Warwickshire Regiment

All three men were originally buried near to where they had been in action, in Kiboko Wood Cemetery, Biaches, at map reference 62c. H. 35. b, 9. 9.,[2] where the original graves were marked with crosses. That small cemetery was by a small copse between Biaches and Flaucourt, where 30 United Kingdom soldiers were buried by the 40th Division in February and March, 1917. All but one belonged to the Royal Warwicks, and twenty of these to the 1st/6th Battalion.

Map of Biaches

Map of Biaches

The bodies in this cemetery were later ‘concentrated’, i.e. moved, to the Assevillers New British Cemetery where Herbert Read was reburied in Plot: III. C. 7.   Assevillers is a village approximately 6 miles south-west of Peronne, and some 5 miles from Biaches. The village had been taken by the French in the autumn of 1916.

Herbert was awarded the Victory and British medals.

He is remembered on the Rugby Memorial Gates and also on a family headstone in Clifton Road Cemetery, Rugby.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

– – – – – –

 

This article on Herbert Henry Read was researched and written for a Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the Rugby Family History Group, November 2016.

[1]       https://www.forces-war-records.co.uk/units/316/royal-warwickshire-regiment/

[2]     Scottish National Library, Map ref: 62C.NW, Scale: 1:20000, Edition:4A, Published: January 1917, Trenches corrected to 8 January 1917.

 

Read, Charles George. Died 15th Dec 1916

Charles George Read “joined up” in 1914 aged 19, giving his birth as 1895. His service number was 11383 in the Kings Royal Rifle Corps.

Charles George Read

Charles George Read

The 2nd battalion King’s Royal Rifles took part in most of the Battle of the Somme. The last action was the Battle of Morval which ended on 28th September 1916. Charles George must have died in later shelling, as he has no marked grave.

Charles George Read died on 15th December 1916 and is remembered on the Thiepval Monument.

Charles George Read was born Q2 1894 in Great Bowden, Market Harborough Leicestershire. His parents were Charles John and Minnie Read nee Howarth.

His parents marriage was registered 1893 Q4 Billesdon Leicestershire.

His father Charles John Read and his mother Minnie nee Howarth had 7 children between 1893 and 1911, their first child was Charles George born 1894 Great Bowden Market Harborough, James William born 1895 Great Bowden Market Harborough, Colin Edmund born 1897 Great Bowden Market Harborough, Gladys Maud born 1898 Great Bowden Market Harborough, Herbert born 1901 Great Bowden Market Harborough, Ivy Marion born 1904 Rugby, and Reginald Stanley born 1907 Rugby.

In 1901 UK census Charles J Read age 30 is living 5 Station Road Great Bowden Leicestershire and was a railway engine stoker with his wife Minnie age 31 and 4 children:- Charles G age 6, James W age 5, Colin E aged 3 and Gladys M aged 2.

By 1911 Charles and his family had moved to live at 46 Rokeby Street Rugby, father Charles was still a railway locomotive stoker living with his wife Minnie age 41 and 7 children, Charles George was age 16 and a railway engine cleaner his brother James William aged 15 was a winder in electrical works, his other brother Colin Edmund aged 13 was at school and also a newsboy the 3 additional children all born after 1901 are Herbert born 1901 Great Bowden, Ivy Marion born 1904 Rugby and Reginald Stanley born 1907 Rugby.

Taking a step backwards to 1891 UK census we find his father Charles J Read age 20 single and a lodger who is a Railway Engine Cleaner born North Crawley Buckinghamshire lodging at Station Road Great Bowden the home of Elizabeth Sharpe aged 30 a widow and her family + 3 lodgers a railway carman, a railway shunter and railway engine cleaner.

Going back even further to 1881 UK census we find Charles age 10 living in a shepherds lodge in Castle Ashby Northamptonshire with parents James age 35 and who is a shepherd and his mother Ann Read age 32 and 4 siblings, William age 8, Emma age 6, Herbert aged 4 and George aged 1 + visitor Mary A Smith aged 22 born North Crawley Buckinghamshire. In 1871 UK census Charles John Read aged 3 months living High Street North Crawley Buckinghamshire with parents James age 25 a bricklayers labourer and Ann Read age 22 a lace maker.

And in 1891 UK census Minnie Howarth aged 21 single and a servant born Brighton Sussex living Northampton Road Little Bowden Leicestershire working for William Symington age 81 a widow and coffee merchant and his family.

Going back even further to 1881 UK census we find his mother Minnie Howarth aged 11 living with parents James and Eliza Howarth and sister Maud Eliza Howarth aged10 living Alma Road Reigate Foreign Surrey together with 2 lodgers William Adey age 23 under gardener domestic born Reading Berkshire and Jesse Hawkins aged 24 groom domestic born Nutfield Surrey and a gardener servant Walter Cainfield age 27 born Brighton.

In 1871 UK census Minnie Howarth age 17 months is living North Bruton Mews St. George parish of Hanover Square London with parents James and Eliza Howarth plus her sister Maud E Howarth aged 5 months, her father James is a coachman, we find James Read born abt 1867 Cranfield Bedfordshire his parents are Joel and Ann Read.

The 1939 register tells us that his father Charles J Read was age 69 giving his date of birth as 19th July 1870 and a retired railway engine driver and his wife Minnie aged 70 giving her date of birth as 23rd December 1869 and unpaid household duties and living 46 Rokeby Street Rugby.

His father died in 1946 in Rugby, his mother Minnie in 1954 in Rugby.

Charles George Read’s parents published an announcement in the Rugby Advertiser in 1921. on the anniversary of his death.

In loving memory of Charles George Read, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Read of 46 Rokeby Street, 2nd K.R.R., who was killed in action in France, Dec. 15th 1916, aged 22 years. “Until the day dawn, and the shadows flee away.” – From his loving Father, Mother, Brothers and Sisters.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

6th Nov 1915. The Munitions Tribunal

THE MUNITIONS TRIBUNAL

There was a further sitting of the Coventry Munitions Tribunal on Monday, thirteen cases being down for hearing, twelve informations being laid by employers for breach of regulations under the munitions Act. Mr F Tillyard presided, and the assessors present were Messrs A Lord for the employers and G Wainwright for the men.

WORKERS’ WASTE OF TIME.

Found smoking in the lavatory at the B.T.H Works (Coventry), H Clarke (18), of 110 Kingsway, Coventry, was summoned and fined 10s. He explained to the Court that he had no work to do, but the Foreman stated that there was work if he wanted it.

Against F J Moran, 55a Lower Ford Street, and Wm James Bolton, 68 East Street, Coventry, both capstan hands at the B.T.H, the information was that they wasted time in the lavatories and were found gambling. The youths, who were before the Tribunal a month ago, were each fined 15s for the present offence.

ABSENCE FROM WORK.

Alleging three days’ absence without reasonable excuse, Willans and Robinson’s, Rugby, brought proceedings against Robert Toothhill, a tool-fitter, of Rugby, who explained that he lost two days in paying a visit to his father, who was ill. Toothill, who was stated to have lost over 60 hours in the last six weeks, was fined £1.

DUNCHURCH ARTILLERYMEN HOME FROM THE FRONT.

Two Dunchurch artillerymen, Driver R Elkington, 117th Battery R.F.A, and Bombadier C Carter, 127th Battery R.F.A, who have been at the front since the commencement of the war, are at present on short leave of absence, which, after their arduous life during the past fifteen months, is proving very welcome. The two young men were schoolboys together, and have been friends all their lives, and, by a strange coincidence, their respective batteries were located in the same field for three months, during which time they were unaware of each other’s presence, and never met until they did so in Dunchurch. They both went through the retreat from Mons, La Gateau, Ligny, and the Battles of the Marne and the Aisne. Driver Elkington’s battery afterwards moved off to Ypres, and he took part in the first great fight for that much-contested town. In this battle—which was one of the hottest in which he was engaged—he was twice wounded (once in the head), and one of the other drivers was killed and one wounded, while two of the horses attached to the gun were killed. After a spell in hospital he was transferred to La Bassee, and afterwards to Ypres, where he participated in the severe fighting and the gas attack near there on Whit Monday. In this battle he experienced a very narrow escape. While near the famous Cloth Hall a shell burst in front of his gun, killing his horse, and he himself sustained injuries that necessitated his spending nine weeks in hospital. Driver Elkington feelingly added that he was one of the few men who were left in his battery of those who went out in August, 1914.

Bombardier Carter, who has two brothers (one of whom has been wounded) at the front with the Royal Warwicks, also went through the whole of the earlier fighting, and has had many thrilling and exciting experiences. He has brought home a number of interesting souvenirs picked up on the battlefield, including a great grey coat belonging to a dead Uhlan of the 9th Regiment.

Both men are agreed that the morale at the Allied troops is superior to that of the Germans, and that the British artillery has now secured a definite superiority. The British shells, too, are more effective than those fired by the Germans. The munitions were now coming up well, but they wanted still more and more men. Bombardier Carter is of opinion that, given the necessary amount of ammunition and a good supply of reserves, the Allies will soon be able to smash through the German defences and bring the war to a satisfactory conclusion, but to do this more men and munitions are required. He added that the British anti-aircraft guns are very effective in bringing down German aeroplanes. He had met the “ E ” Company and Rugby Howitzers while at the front, and they both seemed to be doing well.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

News has been received that Rifleman Lionel T Smith, K.R.R, known as “Tiger” Smith, of Rugby, who was posted as missing after the great British advance in September, is wounded and a prisoner in Germany.

The death has occurred in London of Lieut Robert Emmet, Life Guards, elder son of Major Robert Emmet, Warwickshire Yeomanry, whose home is at Moreton Paddox, Warwick. Lieut Emmet was formerly an officer of the Yeomanry, and was only recently transferred to the Life Guards. He had been ill for some weeks.

After a stay of some 14 months in Towcester, the 2nd/1st Northants Yeomanry left on Monday morning. The men during their stay in Towcester have behaved in an exemplary manner, and had become universally liked. The town generally has greatly benefited by having the troops billeted there, and they will be very much missed. The 3rd/1st Regiment is for the time being still at Towcester.

The Territorial Forces’ Record Office have communicated with the Coventry City Police, as they are anxious to trace the next-of-kin of Private E. J Barker, No 1557 Warwickshire Yeomanry. A letter concerning him, addressed to “Mrs G Barker, Buckland House, Coventry,” has been returned through the Post Office marked “ Not to be found ” The police will be glad if Mrs Barker would communicate with them.

AN OLD “ E ” COMPANY MAN KILLED.

To the list of local heroes who fell in the gallant charge by the Territorials on the German lines has to be added the name of Pte William Baines Harris (27), nephew of Mr and Mrs James Capell, of Featherbed Lane Farm, Bilton. Pte Harris came to Rugby in 1900, and worked on Mr J H Loverock’s farm for eight years, and afterwards for Mr J E Cox. When war broke out he was working as a shunter on the railway at Bescot, and joined the North Midland Territorial Division some six weeks after. He was a member of “ E ” Company (Rugby) for some years.

PROMOTION OF A RUGBY TERRITORIAL.

Farrier Quartermaster sergeant R C Snewing, elder son of Mr and Mrs Snewing, of Bath Street, Rugby, has been appointed to a second-lientenancy in his regiment the 2nd County of London Yeomanry (Westminster Dragoons), Second Lieut Snewing enlisted as a trooper in September, 1914, and subsequently received promotion to Lance-corporal in November. Lance-sergeant in March, Sergeant in April, and Farrier-major in August last. He served in the last year of the Volunteer Form with the old F Company of the 2nd V.B Royal Warwickshire Regt, and on the inauguration of the Territorial Force, entered the Rugby Howitzer Battery, attaining the rank of Corporal. On leaving Rugby, he transferred to the 4th Kent (Howitzer) Battery, with whom he served as Sergeant during the remainder of his term.

OLD MURRAYIAN GASSED.

Rifleman Chas Read, 2nd K.R.R, an old Murrayian, in a letter to Mr W T Coles Hodges, says : “ I have been out at the front twelve months, and have been in every action of any consequence, but I came to a full stop on September 25th, the day we started the big advance. I was gassed with poisonous gas, but I am almost well now. My word, what a time it was a couple of days before the attack ! The shelling was terrible, but it gave me great pleasure to think that at last we were going to get them going, and so we did ; but I suppose this is stale news now. I am pleased to see that so many of the old Murray boys have answered the call. Many have paid the great sacrifice, but it cheers one up very much to know that the old boys of the Murray School have not been found wanting when our country’s call to arms sounded.

PTE MACE OF HILLMORTON A PRISONER.

Pte P Mace, 2nd Oxon and Bucks L.I, a son of Mr S Mace, Lower Street, Hillmorton, who was reported last week to be missing, has written to his sister, stating that he is a prisoner in Prussia, and adding, “ I am sorry to say I was wounded, and could not get back to our lines. I think they have got me now for the duration of the war, and I shall be glad of anything you can I send me, especially cigarettes, as I am spun right out. I must thank God that I am alive, as I had a very narrow escape. I was wounded in the legs and face, and they very nearly cut my nose off.” In a postcard to his parents, Pte Mace states that he would be thankful for gifts of food or cigarettes. He adds that he is now doing well.

WITH THE RUGBY HOWITZER BATTERY.

Driver Clifford Tomes of the Rugby Howitzer Battery, writes from somewhere in France” to his parents, who reside at 177 Cambridge Street :- “ There was an attack on our front yesterday, but it was repulsed by us. The 7th Warwicks are catching it pretty well. It amuses us chaps when a fellow comes back off leave and he says that people ask him if we have had any fighting yet ! I should not think they ever read the papers. It is because they never see any casualties mentioned, but that is because we have such extraordinary good luck. The gunners of our battery are everlastingly under fire, but my being a driver, I only get into it occasionally, and many a time when I have been up with the rations, the rifle and maxim fire has been terrific. We start the old rum issue next Sunday, and we are having sheep skins to keep us warm. We look like a lot of bears.; but I regard myself as a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Still I may have altered, for I think this life breaks anybody. We shall want plenty more men. Please post me an Advertiser every Friday night.

GRAMOPHONE FOR THE 1/7th WARWICKS

Miss Evans, of 13 James Street, who has a brother serving in the Rugby Company of the 1/7th Warwicks at the front, has recently collected between £5 and £6 with which she procured a gramophone and set of records, etc., from Mr J T E Brown. Albert Street, Rugby. The instrument was sent out to the C Company on the 3rd of October, and Miss Evans has received the following letter in acknowledgment :-

“ DEAR MISS EVANS,—I hardly know how to adequately thank you and all the people of Rugby for the handsome way in which you all think of us all out here. I need hardly say we all greatly appreciate your kindnesses which you are always showing to the Rugby contingent of the 1/7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment. The latest contribution, the gramophone, will greatly cheer our periods of rest, and will always be a welcome and practically indispensable part of our sing-songs, which we hold whenever opportunity offers. I am requested to thank you for this trouble and time taken up in collecting for us, and also the subscribers for the generous way in which they responded.—Assuring you of our best thanks, yours sincerely, H. B. MASON, Capt.
1/7th R. War. R.”
October 90, 1915.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

Recruiting has been less brisk at Rugby Drill Hall this week, but the recruiting authorities are anticipating a busy time next week, when the canvassing returns come in. The following have been accepted :—J W Oliver and P G Burton, R.W.R ; F F Walter and A Commons, Royal Flying Corps ; J V Sanders, C H Meacham, and A E V Meacham, R.G.A ; A C Lamb, Middlesex Regt ; T A White, H Cutler, J R Wildman, and G W C Pargetter, R.A.M.C ; W T Bridgman, A H Meadows, W O Watts, A H EASON, A W Isham, J W Gray, M J B Amey, R.F.A ; W T Hinks and R Herring, 220th Co R.E ; W H Hammond and L Sheasby, R.E (drivers); R E Clements and H Essex, A.S.C ; and C Prestidge, A.O.C.

A number of other men offered themselves, but were rejected. Recruits are still urgently required for the Infantry, and all regiments of this branch of the service are open.

22nd May 1915. Casualties of the War

ANOTHER RUGBY MAN MISSING.

Mr and Mrs J Wood, of 85 Oxford Street, have received news from the front that their son, Rifleman Leslie Wood, of the Rifle Brigade, is missing. His regiment was engaged in severe fighting in the neighbourhood of Hill 60 on Sunday, May 9th, and after the battle he failed to respond to the roll call, and his fate is, at present, uncertain. Rifleman Wood joined the army in August last, and was drafted to the front about ten weeks ago. He was 21 years of age, and previous to joining the army was employed, in the Controller Factory of the B.T.H. He was a former member of the Holy Trinity Church Choir, and was also a member of the Church Troop of Boy Scouts, in which organization he took a great interest. He is a nephew of Mr W E Robotham, vice-chairman of the Rugby Board of Guardians.

PAILTON.

KILLED IN ACTION.-Much sympathy is felt with the Rev W E and Mrs Jackson, who received the news on Friday last week of the loss of their second son, Second-lieut E P Jackson, 3rd Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, but attached to the 1st Battalion South Wales Borderers, killed in action. Lieut Jackson was a young man of great promise and very highly spoken of by his brother officers. Before joining the Army he was pursuing his legal studies, and after he had graduated at his college he intended to take up law as his profession. He seemed to have a peculiar aptitude for legal decisions. His College authorities, as well as his military authorities, speak in the highest terms of his work. All will regret that a young life of such promise should be out off after just having attained his majority.

HILLMORTON.

SERGEANT H. H. HANCOCKS KILLED AT HILL 60.

Mr and Mrs J Hancocks, of Hillmorton Locks, have received the sad mews that their third son, Sergt Herbert Harold Hancocks, of the 3rd Battalion King’s Royal Rifles, was killed in action at Hill 60 on April 26th. Sergt Hancocks, who was 25 years of age, had been in the Army eight years, seven, of which had been spent abroad in Crete, Malta, and latterly India. He was present when the dastardly attempt to assassinate the Viceroy, Lord Hardinge, was made, and some of the scraps of metal from the bomb were embedded in his helmet. He also assisted in lifting Lord Hardinge from the elephant, and was present at the great Durbar. He finished his term as a soldier in July last, but owing to the outbreak of war was unable to return home. His regiment landed in England in November, and proceeded to the front a few days before Christmas. Before leaving for France he spent a few days with his family at Hillmorton. He was one of the best shots in the corps, for which he was awarded at modal. He was also a first-class signaller, and acted as instructor in this branch. An enthusiastic follower of local football, Sergt Hancocks informed his patents that he always looked out for the Rugby Advertiser reports of local matches. The accompanying photograph is reproduced from a group taken in India. Another son of Mr and Mrs Hancocks is serving in Kitchener’s Army.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Mr J C Brown, son of Mr J Brown, of North Street, Rugby, has received a commission as surgeon probationer in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserves.

Lieut-Col and Hon Col H Hanbury has been gazetted lieutenant-colonel of the 7th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

Mr Percy Read, of 86 York Street, who is a compositor at Messrs Frost & Sons, is leaving his work to join the Army. Mr Read was married about two years ago, and as an old Volunteer has been so impressed with the necessities of the military situation that he is giving up his employment and disposing of his home in order to do his “ little bit” for his country. We hope that his patriotic example will be imitated.

Some Royal Engineers were waiting at a railway crossing near Bletchley on Monday when a trainload of German prisoners captured in the Hill 60 fighting passed through. The latter, seeing the British soldiers, spat at them from the carriage windows and made insulting remarks. The Engineers disregarded the jeers, and remained standing at attention.

RUGBY MAN BADLEY WOUNDED.

Corpl F M Staines, 2nd Rifle Brigade, a son of Second Officer Staines, of the Rugby Fire Brigade, has been rather badly wounded. In a letter he states that on Sunday, May 9th, after a bombardment, they made a charge, and after they had captured three German trenches he was wounded in the left hip. He got back somehow, but while he was doing so he received another wound through the right thigh. This was at 6 a.m. on Sunday, and he had to lie where he was until 4 a.m on Tuesday before they could carry him in. He is now in hospital at Boulogne, where he states that he is receiving every attention, and where all are most kind. He concludes his letter with a request for the Rugby Advertiser.- A lady writing from the hospital states that Corpl Staines has undergone an operation, and that he is very plucky in bearing his wounds.

KINGS NEWNHAM.

It was with very great regret the news was received of the death at the battle of Ypres, on April 25th, of Pte Charles Hancox, of the 1st Royal Warwickshire Regiment. He was one of first from this village to enlist, and the first to fall in the service of his country. He was of a quiet, unassuming character, and was well liked by everyone. Charlie was a native of Long Lawford, and losing both his parents when he was quite a boy, he and his younger brother were taken to and brought up by the late Mrs Clark, of Kings Newnham, with whom they lived till her death two years ago. He proved himself deserving of all her kindness and care.

Before enlisting he worked for Mr W Dunn as a farm labourer. He went into the trenches on February 22nd. On Sunday evening, after the usual service, the Rector (Rev G W Jenkins) invited those who cared to stay to at memorial service in the Parish Church, where he was a most regular worshipper. Part of the Burial Service was read by the Rector, and the hymn, ” On the Resurrection morning,” was sung. The whole congregation remained to pay their last respect to this young soldier. He was 24 years of age. He had a very deep sense of his duty to his King and country. In a letter received from him, written shortly before his death, his concluding words were : ” Don’t worry about me; God knows best, and that is my hope.”

RUGBY FORTRESS COMPANY.

SIR,  – Lord Kitchener has told me that he needs 360,000 more men.

The War Office has asked the town of Rugby to raise a (Fortress) Company Royal Engineers, and a reply has been sent to the Secretary of the War Office to say that Rugby will raise this company.

The members of the recruiting committee, the leaders of the trades and labour organisations, and many others have done everything they can to put full information before the men. We are still short of about 60 men, especially bricklayers, blacksmiths, carpenters, and masons.

There are plenty of suitable men in Rugby who can join, and I ask them to do so at once in order that the training of the company may go on without any delay.

If man has good reasons for not coming himself, he ought to feel justified in asking others to join. If he does not feel justified in asking others to join, then I ask him again to consider the possibility of coming himself.-I am, sir, yours faithfully.

E W E KEMPSON (LIEUT).

0.C 22th Fortress Company, R.E.

During the past week the recruits have been drilling at the Howitzer Battery headquarters, and by their smartness and general aptitude for their work have surprised and delighted the experienced non-commissioned officers who are training them. It is hoped that the first batch will receive their uniform in the course of a few days.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

The following have enlisted during the past week at the Rugby Drill Hall :- E J Baker, A V Herbert, G E Manser, W V Ingram, W F Bloomfield, T H Lang, W T Boyce, W C Carrick, F G Turner, Rugby Fortress Company; T Holman, Staffords; A J Brett, R.A.M.C ;G J T Collier, Hants Regiment ; C A Bird, Leicestershires ; W H Hallam, Lincolnshire Regiment; E Harris, R.W.R ; J Dorman, L J Turner, and G Facer, Mechanical Transport. A.S.C.

THE WHITE FEATHER POSTCARD.

SIR,-I received a postcard through the post this morning with a white leather on and the following words: “ Stop playing with little boys ! Be a man ; play the game ; think it over.” It is generally a wise rule to pay no attention to anonymous letters ; but I think, perhaps, that the sender may be sincere, if ignorant, and I therefore propose to answer it.

Firstly, let me say that I spent four years with the Rugby Boy Scouts – years which cost me all my spare time and a considerable amount of money. I fail to see that I am to be condemned for doing voluntary work.

The following facts may possibly enlighten those who concern themselves with other people’s affairs :-

My business was founded by myself twelve years ago on a capital of £10, and has grown steadily owing to personal effort, until to-day we are handling about £17,000 a year in premiums. A year and a half ago a move was made to larger premises, and consequently heavier expenses were incurred. Six months later war broke out. During these eleven years I never had a salary, but have depended entirely on commission. There have been many anxious moments throughout that time, and the future is naturally very uncertain. Nevertheless, I immediately volunteered for active service in the Royal Flying Corps, armoured car section, or elsewhere, stipulating that I should be given the option of leaving the service at the end of six months. This was refused by the authorities. This insurance business is a personal one and dependent on me, and I see no reason I should be driven into bankruptcy, with the consequent dismissal of my staff and the failure of heavy obligation to some of my relatives.

The idea of sending me a white feather marks the sender as a fool. No one knows until he faces the great crisis whether he is coward or not. So far, any rate in the minor adventures of life, my nerve has not troubled me.

Finally, let me express my disgust at the action of a Rugby inhabitant who is capable of sending such an epistle through the post on a card. My only reason for dealing with the matter at all is to save the feelings of others to whom, no doubt, similar documents may be sent, I am not ashamed of my reasons, hence this letter, which I shall be glad to explain further if the sender has the courage to call at my office or write to me under his or her correct name.

I B HART-DAVIES.

3 Albert Street, Rugby, May 17th.

[Note: Lieutenant Hart Davies of the Royal Flying Corps was killed on 27 July 1917]