Motorcycling Cousins

Event date

26th August 1915

Media files and documents


Entity info.

It was reported in The Luton News on 26th August 1915, that cousins Pte Aubrey Frederick M2/054102 & Cpl 29620 Reginald Pryer Godfrey had had an eventful time of it at the front, but despite some terrible injuries, they both survived the war.

Aubrey Frederick Godfrey was born in November 1895 in Luton, only son of Frederick Ernest & Martha.

In 1911 he is a 10 year old school boy & living at 'Hazelhurst' 3 London Road. His father's business is a bleach & dye works in Langley Street. His mother is at home looking after him & his sisters, 17 year old Dorothy & 6 year old Marjory.

On the 6th March 1915 Frederick joined the Army Service Corps, Mechanical Transport Division at Bedford. He is described on his service record as 5ft 9inches tall & of good character. He was sent to France within days of joining but within 4 months he had sustained a G.S.W to the right eye & been involved in an horrific accident that left him with injuries that meant he was discharged from service on 23rd December 1915.

His record tells us that he had been left with paralysis on the left side of his face, a fracture to the base of his skull & deafness in his left ear. He was issued with an armlet & pamphlet (number 67848) on 18th January 1916 & was awarded the 1914/15 Star, British & Victory medals & the Silver War Badge.

He married Violet Tooley on 18th Jun 1919 at St Pauls Walden, Hitchin. He died in June 1977 aged 82.

Reginald Pryer Godfrey was born in Luton on 1 Dec 1894. He was the youngest son of Albert James & Ellen.

His father owned a Drapery business & lived with Ellen & sons Eric, who was assisting in the family business & Hayden, an apprentice auctioneer, at the family home 'East Howe' 23 London Road in 1911. The 1911 census tell us that 16 year old Reginald was away from home as an apprentice at George Hammerstones' drapery warehouse in Shoreditch, London.

A service record has not survived for Reginald, but we do know he joined the Royal Engineers as a despatch rider. He survived the war & received the British, Victory & 14/15 Star medals. He died in December 1975 aged 81.

Author: KarenC

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