Lance Corporal

Lanc Corporal StripeJunior to a Corporal. From lancepesade "officer of lowest rank, from obsolete French lancepessade, from Old Italian lancia spezzata, superior soldier, literally "broken lance". Originally referred to as a "chosen man" who would take control of the section if the Corporal was to be killed or wounded

Lance Corporal Horace Charles Mayles

L-Cpl Horace Charles Mayles, 45373, Machine Gun Corps, was killed in action in Flanders on September 20th, 1917. He was aged 24, married with one child and a home address of 14 Wood Street, Luton. He was also a bandsman in the Park Street Salvation Army Temple Band.

In a letter to widow Elsie, comrade Pte G. Toyer, of 134 Chapel Street, Luton, said they had had to attack the enemy trenches at about 5.45am on September 20th and they had not got far over the top when her husband was hit in the head by a sniper's bullet. He died in a few seconds and did not suffer paid.

Lance Corporal Archibald George Dexter

L-Cpl Archibald George Dexter, 233498, 1/2nd Battalion London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers), was killed in action in Belgium on August 16th, 1917. A chum on leave, Pte Smith, of New Town Street, Luton, said he had seen L-Cpl Dexter's party fall and had helped to bring them in and bury them. L-Cpl Dexter was killed instantly when a shell burst among the group of five men - all but one from Luton - whom he was in charge of.

Lance Corporal Herbert Smith

L-Cpl Herbert Smith, 60089, 26th Battalion Royal Fusiliers, was the third of five serving sons of Joseph and Jane Smith, of 58 New Town Street, Luton, to lose his life on the battlefield. He died of wounds in Belgium on August 2nd, 1917.

Herbert had enlisted at the outbreak of war into the Bedfordshire Regiment (40374). He was wounded at Gallipoli and invalided home. After recovery he was drafted into the Royal Fusiliers and went to France.

Lance Corporal Walter Jesse Goodge

L-Cpl Walter Jesse Goodge, 50300, 9th Battalion Suffolk Regiment, was killed in action in France on July 22nd, 1917. He was aged 21.

Lieut G. K. Moseley, of the Suffolk Regiment, wrote to parents Albert and Harriet Goodge, of Darley Hall, near Luton: "On the morning of the 22nd at 12.15am a gas shell came over and landed in our front line trenches, killing your son where he stood at his post. The effect of these shells is not shattering like that of high explosives, but as it landed very close L-Cpl Goodge was killed instantly, and there could have been no suffering."

Lance Corporal Philip Herbert Watkins

L-Cpl Philip Herbert Watkins, 200985, 1/5th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action in Palestine on July 20th, 1917. He was aged 27 and married to Maud, living at 14 Highbury Road, Luton.

Capt Armstrong said he had died leading his men, and Lieut W. A. Shaw wrote: "On July 20th we attacked a Turkish position at night time. He was under my command and behaved in a most gallant way. He showed the greatest coolness. On reaching our lines he was hit in the head by a flying fragment of shell."

Lance Corporal Robert John Cecil Moate

L-Cpl Robert John Cecil Moate, 200634, 1/5th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action in Palestine on July 20th, 1917, and has no known grave. He was aged 20 and the only son of widowed Lizzie Moate, of 23 Union Street, Luton.

Cecil Moate, as he was known, was under age for foreign service when he joined the Bedfords (No 4641) but went to Gallipoli in 1915. There he suffered from dysentery and was in hospital in Malta for six months before being posted to Egypt.

Lance Corporal Sidney Thomas Andrews

L-Cpl Sidney Thomas Andrews, 33003, 8th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment, was listed killed in action in France on May 3rd, 1917, after at first being reported missing.

A letter from Capt J. Abbott to widow Alice at 93 Butlin Road, Luton, said nothing had been heard of her husband since he went into action on May 3rd. Several men of the platoon were cut off from the reminder of the company during the attack and were taken prisoner. The writer said he could only conclude at that stage that L-Cpl Andrews was also a prisoner in German hands.

Lance Corporal Aubrey Oliver Pryer

L-Cpl Aubrey Oliver Pryer, 23418, 14th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, died on May 6th, 1917, from wounds sustained in the Battle of Arras. He was aged 23.

Comrade Pte A. J. White wrote to parents John and Emily Agnes Pryer at 51 Belmont Road, Luton, to inform tham that 'Monty' [L-Cpl Pryer] had died from serious wounds. News came down the line that he was wounded and was being conveyed down later in the day.

Lance Corporal John Thomas Longden

L-Cpl John Thomas Longden, 13234, 10th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment, was killed in action in France on April 28th, 1917. Although he is included on the Luton Roll of Honour, he may not have lived or worked here and his connection appears to be that his mother, Eliza, had moved to live at 6 Church Street, Luton, a short time before his death.

L-Cpl Longden's connections appear to be almost entirely with the Rotherham area of Yorkshire, where both he and his parents were living when the 1911 Census was compiled.

Lance Corporal George Trott

L-Cpl George Trott MM, 3/7607, 7th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was post missing then killed in action on May 3rd, 1917. He was aged 34.

In a letter to George's widow, Bertha, at 59 Ridgway Road, Luton, Lieut F. N. Sherwell wrote that on the morning of the 3rd, when the battalion attacked the German lines, L-Cpl Trott started off with the platoon and was last seen just over the top of the British trenches. All enquiries possible had been made, but there was no further news of him.

Lance Corporal George Kidman


L-Cpl George Kidman, 12387, 6th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action on April 23rd, 1917, during the Battle of Arras. He was aged 22.

In a letter to widowed mother Mrs Amelia Kidman, living at 16 Ashton Road, Luton, company commanding officer Lieut D. M. Saunders said L-Cpl Kidman and two friends were killed by a shell while sitting in a trench on April 23rd. He died instantly and suffered no pain.

Lance Corporal Harry Snoxell


L-Cpl Harry Snoxell, 200561, 1/5th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action in the Second Battle of Gaza, Egypt, on April 19th, 1917. He was aged about 27.

The Luton section of the National Roll of the Great War reveals that Harry volunteered for service in September 1914, and in the following July, after training at Bury St Edmunds, St Albans, Norwich and Bedford, he proceeded overseas. He took part in various operations in Gallipoli, from the landing at Suvla Bay up to the evacuation of the peninsula, from where he was sent to Egypt.

Lance Corporal Charles Lawrence


L-Cpl Charles Lawrence, 23494, 4th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, died at a clearing station in France on February 16th, 1917, three days after being wounded by shrapnel in action at Beaumont-Hamel on the Somme. He was aged 20.

Born in Luton in 1896, Charles was the youngest of five serving soldier sons of widow Mrs Ann Lawrence, of 59 Ashton Road, Luton (her husband, Frederick, died in 1898). He had enlisted in November 1915, having been formerly employed by Messrs J. Webdale and Sons at their Wellington Street store. He was an old boy of Chapel Street School, Luton.


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