Royal Field Artillery Cap BadgeGunner ("Gnr") is a rank equivalent to private in the British Army Royal Artillery and the artillery corps of other Commonwealth armies. The next highest rank is usually lance-bombardier, although in the Royal Canadian Artillery it is bombardier.

Gunner Percival Chase Nicholls

Gunner Percival (Percy) Chase Nicholls, 220919, 291st Brigade Royal Field Artillery, died from pneumonia in the 51st Casualty Clearing Station at Tournai in Belgium on November 26th, 1918.

Two days previously, parents Walter and Lilla Nicholls had received a postcard from their second son to say to was unwell but hoped to soon mend. Chest trouble developed rapidly, resulting in his death.

Gunner Samuel de Vere Kingham

Gunner Samuel de Vere Kingham, 285092, 122nd Anti-Aircraft Section Royal Garrison Artillery, died from dysentery in hospital at Alexandria in Egypt on November 18th, 1918. He had been in hospital for eight weeks and had been passed by the medical board to return home after 14 months service in Egypt.

Born in Aylesbury in 1887, Samuel (plus two brothers and four sisters) was living with his widowed mother Mary at 124 Maple Road, Luton, at the time of the 1911 Census. Samuel was then described as a bill poster.

Gunner George Stanley Percy Kingham

Gunner George Stanley Percy Kingham, 173474, 117th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, died in the 15th Casualty Clearing Station in France on the evening of November 13th, 1918 – two days after the armistice. He had been gassed by a German shell while in action at Ypres on November 9th.

Born in Luton in 1885, he was a son of master builder George and Cicely Jane Kingham, of Aldenham House, 2 Reginald Street, Luton. He had joined the R.F.A. voluntarily and was trained at Biscot Camp.

Gunner Wallace Cooke

Gunner Wallace Cooke, 43618, 187th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, was killed in action in France on October 2nd, 1918. He was one of five men killed in the 8pm attack, with many more injured, including Sgt W. Evans, a wounded chum in hospital who wrote to widow Florence Maud Cooke at 47 Rothesay Road, Luton.

Wallace had been looking forward to coming home on leave, having been at the front for about a year since his last leave.

Gunner Frank Fairbridge Moate

Gunner Frank Fairbridge Moate, 641, 3rd Australian Machine Gun Corps, was killed in action in France on September 18th, 1918.

Born in Brixton, London, in 1882, he was living as a child with parents Robert James and Sarah Susan Moate at 35 Liverpool Road, Luton, in 1891. Before emigrating to Australia early in 1901, he worked as a warehouseman for hat manufacturers Carruthers Bros, of King Street, Luton. He was also a member of Waller Street Methodist Chapel.

Gunner Daniel Thomas Martin

Gunner Daniel Thomas Martin, 277580, 119th Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, died in the 12th General Hospital at Rouen in France on September 30th, 1918. He had been severely wounded in the chest and right arm at the beginning of August.

The son of a Crimean War veteran, he had served 21 years in the R.G.A., rejoining his regiment at the age of nearly 45 on the outbreak of war. He was drafted to France, where he served for three years and ten months.

Gunner William Ewart Waller

Gunner William Ewart Waller, 125244, 317th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, was killed in action on September 12th, 1918. He was aged 20.

Luton-born son of George and Mary Ann Waller, he was by 1911 living with his uncle and aunt, Elijah and Rebecca Rickard at 95 Boyle Street, Luton.

Gunner William Pearce

Gunner William Pearce, 956450, A Battery, 78th Brigade Royal Field Artillery (Signalling Training Centre), was serving with the Army of Occupation on the Rhine following the 1918 Armistice when he died from pneumonia in the 42nd Stationary Hospital in Germany on May 19th, 1919.

Gunner Charles Richard Mellor

Gunner Charles Richard Mellor, 656450, 82nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, died on August 19th, 1918, in the 12th General Hospital, Rouen, in France, as a result of having been gassed in action. He had been married only four months.

Born in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, on March 12th, 1899, he had joined the Staffordshire R.F.A. when aged only 16½. He was stationed at Biscot for eight months and met his future wife, Luton girl Daisy Holton, while there.

Gunner Fred Gordon West

Gunner Fred Gordon West, 881989, 312th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, was killed in action in France on July 29th, 1918. He was aged 28 and single.

Second son of Charles and Amy Jane West, he was born in Steppingley, Beds, in 1890. By the time of the 1911 Census, Fred was living with his parents and sister Lillian Edith and brother Jack at 47 Ivy Road. He was employed as a stiffener by hat manufacturer Mr Sidney Parker, of 47 Collingdon Street, Luton.

Gunner Edward Joseph Asbury

Gunner Edward Joseph Asbury, 153810, Royal Field Artillery, was listed killed in action on March 25th, 1918, after he had initially been reported wounded and missing on that date.

Born in 1890 to John and Mary Ann Asbury, of 4 Midland Cottages, Harlington, he had joined up in September 1916. Previously he was in business in the milk trade and resided at West View, Old Bedford Road, Luton.

Gunner John Lewington

Gunner John Lewington, 254847, 31st Medium Trench Battery, Royal Field Artillery, was killed in action in France on August 3rd, 1918. He was single, aged 30 and had been in Luton for 15 years.

John Lewington was a drayman on the Midland Railway goods staff and made deliveries in the High Town district. He lodged in Church Street, Luton, and supported his widowed mother Rachel, who was living in London.

Gunner Alfred Arthur White

Gunner Alfred Arthur White, 196693, 187th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, was killed instantly at about 9pm on April 15th, 1918, when a shell hit the dug-out he occupied on the Western Front in France during a heavy shelling of his battery. He was aged 23 and single.

Born in Castleford, Yorkshire, in 1894, he, parents Walter George and Sarah Jane White and 12 siblings had moved to Luton via Kettering and Dunstable. His father died in Luton in 1915 and his mother was living at 56 Norman Road, Luton.

Gunner William Frederick Govier

Gunner William Frederick Govier, 119496, 186th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, was killed on March 21st, 1918, when a shell exploded outside the battlefield cookhouse where he and a companion were on duty. His unnamed companion was also killed.

Church of England Chaplain the Rev H. A. Norton in a letter to Mrs Mabel Govier, at 122 Baker Street, Luton, said pieces of the shell had pierced the iron sheeting which formed the wall of the cookhouse and struck the two men inside.


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