Officers, N.C.O.s and Men of the 1st Battalion, Buried in Cement House Cemetery
This cemetery contains 3576 Great War burials here, of which 2408 (two thirds) are unidentified. There are a small number of Second World War burials here too.
This cemetery is actually still in use today, occasionally for groups of graves which have to be moved from other locations for various reasons, and also it is where the remains of soldiers who continue to be found in the region are buried.
Of the 1185 named burials 1 Officer and 4 other ranks are soldiers of the 1st Battalion, killed in 1914.
Three of the men buried here were killed during the action at Audregnies on 24th August (Lieutenant Campbell, L/Cpl. Bone and Pt. Trent) whilst the other two (Privates Jones and Thorpe) died of wounds a few days later, undoubtedly as a result of the same action.
Use the links below to read a little more about each man and see where he is buried.
Grave: XVIII.A.18. Killed in Action: 24 August 1914 Age: 23
Personal: Charles was born at 39 Porchester Square, Paddington, London, on 3rd June 1891, the son of Arthur (Living on Own Means) and Annabella Jane (née Purdue) Campbell. He had a younger brother, Cyril, born 5th August 1892.
The 1911 Census (RG 14/6684) has him listed as a ‘Gentleman Cadet‘ at Sandhurst. He does not appear to have been married as it is his father who, in 1917, is requesting his medals to be sent to him.
Military Service: Currently his Army records are unavailable, and do not appear to have survived the Second World War bombing.
Charles was gazetted 2nd Lieutenant in the Cheshire Regiment on 11th October 1911 and promoted Lieutenant in April 1914. At the outbreak of the War he was serving in Ireland with the 1st Battalion.
Charles Campbell’s Medal Index Card shows that at the outbreak of War and entered France 16th August 1914. The War Diary does not a date for when he joined the Battalion.
He was killed in action on 24th August during the action at Audregnies. From the Regimental Roll it is apparent his was under the command of Captain Ernest Rae-Jones, of “D” Company and the two Officers died within a few yards of each other either side of the Audregnies to Elouges road.
In his book “Ever Glorious” Bernard Rigby describes the action at about 5 p.m. on the afternoon of 24th August:
“Maj. Chetwynd-Stapleton, now the senior regimental officer, realised the perilous position of ‘B’ Company, bearing in mind the importance of Audregnies for the security of the left flank. He decided first to try to find Lt.Col. Boger and so at about 5 p.m. he set off up the road towards the right flank. Before doing so he left orders with Lt. Campbell to find out what had happened to Capt. Shore.
The major’s first encounter was with Sgt. Raynor who was just beginning the second withdrawal of his 9 platoon. Both learned much from each other, the consequence of which was that Sgt. Raynor was ordered to continue his retirement and Maj. Chetwynd-Stapleton returned to HQ. Here he discussed the situation with Capt. Dyer of A Company. Chetwynd-Stapleton was under the impression that Shore’s two platoons were still holding Audregnies. In his sortie to find out what had happened to Shore, Campbell was killed.”
Grave: XVIII.A.25. Killed in Action: 24 August 1914 Age: 28
Personal: William was born in Congleton, Cheshire, in February 1886, the eldest son of James and Harriett Ann (née Topham) Bone. He had an older sister, Lilian, and two younger brothers, Percy James and Frank.
On 17th July 1890 William’s mother died, and in 1891 (Census RG 12/2845) the family were living with her parents, William and Harriett, at 12 Bridge Street, Congleton.
In January 1892 James re-married, Ellen Cliffe, and in the next 4 years William gained 3 more half-siblings, Harold, Edith and Mabel.
At the time of his enlistment he was employed as a ‘Blacksmith’s Striker‘. When he joined the Cheshires William was 5’ 4¼” tall (1.63 m.), weighed 112 lbs. (8 st. 0lbs.) had a ‘fresh’ complexion, grey eyes and light brown hair. His religion was Wesleyan Methodist.
George married Edith May Hyde, at the Church of the Ascension, Lower Broughton, Lancaster, on 7th April 1910. The 1911 Census (RG 14/23990) shows the family living at 1 Chestnut Street, Broughton, Salford, and William is employed as a “Railway Shunter” for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Co.
Before the War they were living at Harmsworth Street, Seedley, Salford, Lancashire. George and Edith had two children James Harry (b. 17th November 1910) and Percy William (b. 23rd November 1911) and with effect from 26th April 1915 she was awarded an Army pension of 18/6d (£0.925) per week for all of them (i.e. equivalent to about £120 today – 2023).
In March 1916 William’s widow, Edith, finally received his total effects, amounting to £3 17s 9d (£3.88, or about £430 today) and four years later a War Gratuity of £5 (£330 today). The family later moved to of 10 Forge Terrace, Ketley, Wellington, Shropshire, and in the 2nd quarter 1918 Edith re-married Herbert D. Baron.
However, both of William’s sons died at a young age – James Harry in the March quarter 1920, aged 9, and Percy William in the December quarter 1922, aged 10. Edith died, aged 100, on 14 July 1988.
Military Service: William originally enlisted in the Cheshire Regiment at Stockport on 4th April 1904, aged 18 years 1 month.
His original terms of service were 3 + 9 (i.e. 3 years active service + 9 years reserve). He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion on 15th June 1904 and was posted to Wellington Barracks, Lichfield, on September 22nd.
William was re-assigned to the 1st Battalion on 15th November 1904 and promoted to Lance Corporal (unpaid) on 14th May 1906 and paid from 29th August 1906.
William transferred to the Army Reserve after 3 years on 3rd April 1907, and returned to live at 5 Lower Park Street, Congleton, Cheshire. From subsequent newspaper reports (see below) he remained an active Reservists in the 5th Battalion.
William’s Medal Index Card shows that as a Reservist he was recalled to the Regiment at the outbreak of War and entered France on 16th August 1914. He was reported missing from the Battalion at Audregnies on 24th August. As a member of “C” Company William fought under Captain W.E.L.R. Dugmore in the centre of the line, along the road between Audregnies and Élouges.
Evidence of his death was received by the W.O. from an “unofficial source” (identity disc). In all he served a period of 10 years 143 days with the Regiment.
As the articles reproduced below show, there was some doubt originally whether Pt. Bone had been killed and it was thought (or hoped) that he had been taken prisoner, along with so many of his comrades, but confirmation came later:
The Alderley and Wilmslow Advertiser 21st October 1914:
“STYAL SOLDIER MISSING. In the list of missing belonging to the 1st Cheshire Regiment who have been missing since 23rd and 24th August, the days of the fighting at Mons, is Lance Corporal William Bone, of Harmsworth Street, Seedley, son of Mr James Bone of Styal. Lance Corporal Bone went with the Expeditionary Force, and was engaged in the early days of the war. His many friends in Styal hope that he is one of the prisoners in the concentrated camp in Germany. Mr Bone is married and has two children.”
The Alderley and Wilmslow Advertiser 2nd April 1915
“Lance Corporal William Bourne (sic), of whom nothing has been heard since the Battle of Mons, is the son of Mr James Bourne (sic), of Oak Cottages, Styal. He was a reservist in the 5th Cheshires, but when called up on the outbreak of the war was transferred to the 1st Cheshires. He is a married man, and has a wife and two children, both boys, living at Seedley. Official notification that he was missing was received in August, and since then no information regarding him has been received. This week his wife has received official papers to fill up in order that she may receive her pension as a widow.”
Grave: XVIII.A.20. Died of wounds: 30 August 1914 Age: n/k
Personal: William was born in St Martin’s Parish, Hereford, and at the time of his recall as a Reservist at the outbreak of War was living in Hereford. At the time of his enlistment he was employed as a “Hotel Waiter“.
This is a common name, but the name of his father and place of birth, and approximate age from his enlistment date, below, mean he is most likely the son of Henry (General Labourer) and Ellen (née Crook ?) Jones, living at 27 Belmont Street, Haywood, Herefordshire, in 1891 (Census RG 12/2058).
If this is the case, William was born in 1883 and had an older brother, Christopher, and 3 younger sisters, Imelda, Cecilia and Gertrude.
On 20th March 1915 his father, Henry, received the total of his effects, amounting the £3 17s 9d (£3.89 – equivalent to about £510 today – 2023). Four years later he received a War Gratuity of £5 (about £330 today).
Military Service: William originally enrolled in the 2nd Battalion, at Hereford, on 25th September 1905 and would have served for 3 years with the Battalion in India, before being transferred to the Reserve List for the remaining 9 Years of his Service.
William’s Medal Index Card shows that he entered France on 16th August 1914 and died of wounds on 30th August.
William was one of the 213 names of Officers, NCOs and men reported Killed, Wounded or Missing in the actions of 24th & 26th August, reported in the War Diary, and died of wounds received at Audregnies on the 30th.
Private Lavin of ‘A’ Company was wounded in the Action at Audregnies. He wrote: “One of our own R.A.M.C. officers bandaged me, and the next day I was taken with a number of other English to a hospital in Audregnies.”
From the 25th August to 2nd September four Officers (Jackson, Dyer, Joliffe and Elliott) of the Cheshires and Gallagher of the 4th Dragoon Guards remained at the Hospital, which was part of Convent and staffed by nuns and had been turned into a Hospital, by the Germans, after the Battle.
During this time, at 9.00 a.m. on 30th August 1914, William became the second death at the hospital. (Private 8315 Fred Thorpe also of ‘D’ Company who on the 29th August 1914 had been the first death at the hospital – see below.)
The ‘Annales du pensionnat Saint Bernard à Audregnies. August/Sept 1914‘ (Hospital diary) recorded its second death, ‘Le soldat Jones’, on 30th August 1914. The translation reads : “Around 9 o’clock in the evening, we had a second death, Private Jones, cared for by Dame Marie Edouard, in the hall. He was a Catholic, the vicar of Wihéries had confessed and administered him on Friday. There was talk of trepanning him tomorrow, the doctors doubted the success of the operation. It is therefore better that the Blessed Virgin has spared us this additional cost. He spent the night at the oratory. Dear and virginal oratory, who would have thought it destined to shelter death!” [N.B. The suggested use of ‘Le trépaner‘ would indicate a severe head wound.)
Before he died William: “.. a Catholic, the vicar of Wihéries had confessed and administered him on Friday.” [see Reference – bottom of page]
William’s ‘Register of Soldier’s Effects‘ record confirms that he was originally buried in Audregnies Churchyard, which was one of the locations from which men were re-buried in Cement House after the War.
Almost 500 French graves in the original Plots XVI, XVII and XVIII were removed in 1922 and the space vacated has been filled in the intervening years by graves brought in from communal cemeteries and churchyards in the area when their maintenance in these locations could no longer be assured.
Grave: XVIII.A.21. Died of wounds: 29 August 1914 Age: 29
Personal: Fred was born in St Anne’s, Manchester, in October 1884 (according to his Service Record). He had a sister, Bertha, who was named as his only next of kin. A brother, Charlie, had been killed in the “South African War” (Boer War).
Bertha’s marriage certificate to William Henry Upton (5th August 1916, Union Baptist Chapel, Rochdale Road, Manchester) shows that their father was William Thorpe, an Engineer, but was ‘Deceased’. As Bertha was named next-of-kin it does not seem likely that Fred married. [William Upton was a L/Cpl. in the 25th (Reserve) Battalion, Manchester Regiment.]
At the time of his enlistment Fred was employed as a ‘Salesman‘. He was 5’ 8½” tall (1.74 m.), weighed 139 lbs. (9 stone 13 lbs) had a ‘fresh‘ complexion, brown eyes and brown hair. His stated religion was Church of England.
In March 1920 Fred’s sister, Bertha, received his total effects amounting to £3 5s 9d (£3.28 – equivalent to about £190 today – 2023). Four year later she received a further £5 War Gratuity (£330 today). The delay could have been because the “War Pensions Committee” had tried and failed to find Fred’s widow and “believed she may have remarried“.
Part of Fred’s Service Records shows that he had been in a relationship with a Mary Garrett and they had a daughter, Edith Mary, born after his death on 23rd October 1914 (See Hospital Diary and Footnote below, however].
On his Pension Records Mary Garrett is designated “Unmarried wife“. On 20th June 1916 Mary was awarded a Pension of 15/- (£0.75) per week for herself and their daughter. [i.e. worth about £85 today – 2023.]
The Service Records confirms both of Fred’s parents were dead, no names given. Mary Garratt’s address is recorded as “20 The Shipyard, Ledsam Street, Ladywood, Birmingham“. (This address was the site of a murder in 1912, following which Thomas Killoran was convicted.)
The Service Papers (September 1919) record that no trace can be found of Mary and “.. it is believed that she has married again but her present whereabouts are not known.”
Military Service: Fred enlisted at Birkenhead, Cheshire on 5th November 1906, aged 22 years 0 months. At the time he was already serving with the 3rd Battalion, South Lancs. Regiment. His terms of service were 7 + 5 (i.e. 7 years active service + 5 years reserve).
He was posted to the 1st Battalion on 8th February 1907, and promoted to Lance Corporal (unpaid) on 29th May 1907 (paid from 5th July). Two years later, on 13th July 1909, he was made up to full Corporal before being transferred to the 2nd Battalion for a tour of duty which commenced on 22nd February 1910.
He reverted to Private on 7th October 1910 and 2 days later was posted back to the 1st Battalion. Fred ended his service and was transferred to the Army Reserve ‘B’ List on 5th November 1913 (List ‘A’ 2 weeks later). He had attained a 2nd Class Certificate of Education in March 1907, and passed his training for inclusion in the Mounted Infantry at Longmoor Camp, Hampshire, on 1st February 1912.
His Medal Index Card shows that as a Reservist Fred was recalled to the Regiment at the outbreak of War and entered France on the 16th August 1914 and died of wounds on 29th August.
Fred was reported missing on 24th August, following the Battalion’s heroic stand at Audregnies.
His records state he received a “perforating wound of the lungs” and was taken prisoner and admitted to the ‘ambulance of St Bernard’s Boarding School, Audregnies‘ where he subsequently died on the 29th. (War Office Form: B 103, January 1915).
From the 25th August to 2nd September four Officers (Jackson, Dyer, Joliffe and Elliott) of the Cheshires and Gallagher of the 4th Dragoon Guards remained at the Hospital, which was part of Convent and staffed by nuns, and had been turned into a Hospital, by the Germans, after the Battle.
Fred was the first death at the hospital, the following day Private 8019 W. Jones, also of ‘D’ Company (see above), was the second to die at the hospital.
The ‘Annales du pensionnat Saint Bernard à Audregnies. August/Sept 1914‘ (Hospital diary) recorded Fred’s death: “Saturday 29. This morning, at 8.30 a.m., we had the first death, Private Thorpe, who had had his lung punctured by a stab in the back; the wide and deep wound made it possible to see the internal organs, he had arrived on Tuesday afternoon and was summarily dressed, without even being able to undress.
He was an interesting boy of 30, robust, full of life and health, he had been married for a year. He had been able to kiss, before leaving, his little girl born the day before his departure. He was from the High Church, but very pious, he immediately let himself be won over by the gentle, pious, affectionate and at the same time discreet influence of Dame Marie Geneviève who cared for him. Madam Superior suggested to her acts of faith, of hope and charity, of contrition, of conformity to the will of God; he made the sacrifice of his life several times, repeated after Dame Marie Geneviève the name of Jesus and kissed with effusion the crucifix which will be sent as a souvenir to his wife.”
“The Annals” go on to tell us that Fred: “… wanted Catholic baptism, but the Chaplain does not consider the administration of the sacrament to an adult as regular or even permitted, under these conditions, we must accept. It was Dame Marie Geneviève who closed his eyes, she saw death for the first time!”
Fred was originally buried in Audregnies Churchyard, which was one of the locations from which men were re-buried in Cement House after the War. [“The body wrapped in a sheet, leaving only his face a little uncovered, he was placed in the oratory. This evening, around 5 a.m., the Chaplain took him to the cemetery, accompanied by some comrades.“] [see Reference – bottom of page]
The date of birth of Fred’s daughter, Edith Mary, is difficult to reconcile between the two accounts presented above.
In the Audregnies Hospital Diary it is clearly stated that: “He had been able to kiss, before leaving, his little girl born the day before his departure.” As a Reservist this would have been around 7/8th August. However, his ‘unmarried wife’, Mary Garratt, when making her Pension claim, gives the child’s d.o.b. as 23rd October 1914, almost 2 months after Fred died – but how would he have known it was a daughter? Also, Edith Mary’s birth was not registered until the December quarter 1914, which conforms to the d-o-b of 23 October.
There are 2 possibilities: (1) his “unmarried wife”, Mary, either deliberately or erroneously gave the wrong date when she applied for a Pension in January 1916, but the birth registration is a factor, or (2) Fred was hallucinating and imagining kissing his new-born. He would have known Mary was pregnant, but wouldn’t, of course, know she was to give birth to a girl. A mystery, to which we may never know the answer.
Grave: XVIII.A.24. Killed in Action: 24 August 1914 Age: 30
Personal: Edmund was born in Parkstone, Poole, Dorset in July 1884 (registered in the December quarter). He was the eldest son of 16 children of Edmund Childs and Emily Jane (née Dominey) Trent. Edmund had an older sister, Beatrice, and his younger siblings were Ethel, Gedeon, Daisy, Elsie, Cecil, Gilbert, William, Percy, Kathleen, Grace and Gwendoline (plus three more who died in infancy).
In 1901 the family were living at Victoria Crescent, Branksome, Dorset. (1901 Census 13/1978). By 1911 (RG 14/12286) the enlarged family had moved to Hazelmere Warren Road, Parkstone, Dorset. The Census records Edmund’s occupation as ‘Grocers Storeman‘.
At the time of his enlistment he was employed as a ‘Carter‘. He was 5’ 6″ tall (1.68 m.), weighed 129 lbs. (9 stone 3lbs) had a ‘fresh‘ complexion, hazel eyes and light brown hair. His stated religion was Wesleyan Methodist.
Edmund married Edith Jane Burt on 29th September 1913 at St James’ Church, Kingston, Dorset, and they lived at Chapel House, East Street, Corfe Castle, Dorset. They had one son, Edmund Arthur, born on 23rd September 1914 – just one month after Edmund was killed.
In March 1915 Edmund’s widow received his total effects amounting to £3 1s 9d (£3.08 equivalent to about £400 today – 2023). On 23rd June 1915 Edith received notification of a pension of 15/- (75p) per week, with effect from 26th April, for herself and their child (this would amount to about £100 per week today – 2023). In August 1919 she received a further £5 (£330 today) War Gratuity.
Edith remarried Arthur Margetts on 24th November 1920 at St Nicholas, Parish Church, Studland, Dorset. They lived at 5 Council Houses, Curdridge, Botley, Hampshire. A son, Kenneth, was born on 27th November 1922. Edith died, aged 86, in the December quarter 1973.
Military Service: Edmund enlisted at Poole, Dorset, on 20th June 1904, aged 19 years 11 months. At the time he was already serving with the 3rd Battalion South Lancs. Regiment. His terms of service were 3 + 9 (i.e. 3 years active service + 9 years reserve).
On 20th June 1904 he arrived in Chester and then was posted to Aldershot on 19th August and on to Lichfield on 20th September.
On 26th December 1905 he was posted to India, returning home on 1st May 1907. He received a Good Conduct Badge.
His Medal Index Card shows that as a Reservist he was recalled to the Regiment at the outbreak of War and entered France on the 16th August 1914 and was reported missing on 24th August following the Battalion’s heroic stand at Audregnies, where he fought on the left of the line under Captain Shore.
Fred’s Service Papers contain an exchange of letters between the War Office and his widow exploring where he had been taken as a prisoner of war. However, it was later deemed that he had been killed in action “on or since” the 24th August. In total he had served 10 years 66 days with the Regiment.
Another soldier mentioned by name in ‘Annales du pensionnat Saint Bernard à Audregnies’ is:
Sergeant 8699 George Frederick FARAGE – “B” Company
Military Service: George was a serving soldier at the beginning of the War, stationed with the Battalion in Ireland, and entered France on the 16th August 1914. He was reported missing on 24th August following the Battalion’s heroic stand at Audregnies, where he fought on the left of the line under Captain Shore.
George was captured during the Battle of Audregnies and admitted, presumably wounded, to the ‘Ambulance’ in St Bernard School.
On Sunday, 6th September 1914 a translation of the Diary reads: “Today, Sergeant Farage (1st Cheshire) tried to escape, the poor man would not go far, he was used as a target by the enemy and is riddled with wounds, he has a weakened head (concussion).”
Service records show he became a prisoner of war after the incident described above, and details in the ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross) records show he was in Doberitz Camp in December 1914, presumably moved there via Mons, after being shot whilst trying to escape.
By 2nd January 1918 George had made his way to Chemnitz, still being treated for “Wounds armpit and right shoulder“. Later in the year (1918) records show him in Holland, ready for the exchange (2nd batch) of 42 officers, including Captains Matterson and Massy, and 248 men, including 14 from 1/Cheshires.
After repatriation on 25th November 1918 George was admitted to the King George Hospital, London (‘Severely wounded‘), before being transferred to Southampton to be treated for an ‘Inguinal hernia, Right and Left‘.
Personal: George was born on 11th June 1890, the son of George Edward (Plasterer’s Labourer) [see Footnote below] and Sarah Eliza Ellen (née Draper) Farage. George had an older sister, Louisa.
The 1901 Census (RG 13/579) shows him a patient of The Cottage Hospital, Carshalton, although his parents and sister were living at 11 St Andrew’s Road, Carshalton. (Census RG 13/579) They were at the same address in 1911 (Census RG 14/) although by then George Jnr. had enlisted and was enumerated with the Cheshire Regiment in Antrim, Ireland.
After being repatriated at the end of the War, George, married Daisy Gertrude Smith at All Saints Church, Carshalton, Surrey, on 5th January 1920. They moved to live at 3 Aultone Way, Mitcham, Surrey, and had two daughters, Eileen Muriel (born 24th September 1920) and Kathleen Mary (b. 22nd December 1925).
George’s mother, Sarah, died in March 1916, aged 47, at 2 Gladys Cottages, Wrythe Lane, Carshalton, whilst he was a p-o-w. She was buried on the 18th in All Saints’ Churchyard, Carshalton. George, Snr. died, aged 64, in June 1925 and was buried with his wife on the 10th.
In 1939 George was working as a “Male Nurse” and the family was living at 16 Cherry Close, Carshalton. He had qualified on 18th September 1925 (Cert / MPA) at London County Mental Hospital, Banstead.
George died at Merton, London, in March 1964, aged 73, and was buried on the 13th. His widow, Daisy, had died in the December quarter 1957, aged 66.
George’s father enlisted on as Pte. 2293 George Edward Farage in the 18th Hussars (Cavalry) on 7th August 1879, aged 19 years 2 months. Before that he had served with the 2nd Battalion, Surrey Militia.
CLICK icon to read a full account, with translation, of the ‘Annales du pensionnat Saint Bernard à Audregnies’, from 21st August to 14th September 1914.