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 Bert Gardner

Bert Gardner was born in Luton in 1884, 1 of 12 children born to Philip & Mary (aka Kate).

In 1911 Bert is 20 years old & working as an assistant for a straw hat manufacturer. He is living at No 25 Stockwood Crescent, a 6 roomed house with his father Philip, 64 a mercantile clerk, his 64 year old mother Mary & 2 of his siblings. His sister Maud is 32 & a straw hat finisher & his brother Frederick William is 30 & is also an assistant for a straw hat manufacturer. Florence Joy is living with them as their general domestic servant.

Lance Corporal Frederick Horace Goodwin


L-Cpl Frederick Horace Goodwin, 19854, 8th Battalion Beds Regiment, was one of a number of soldiers with Luton connections killed in action in Flanders on April 19th, 1916.

Born in Ampthill in 1893, he was the eldest son of William and Phoebe Goodwin, of Pulloxhill. Before enlistment, Frederick worked in the Great Northern Railway goods shed at Luton. He continued to live in Pulloxhill and cycled to and from his work in Luton each morning and evening. Previously he had been a farm labourer.

Lance Corporal Arthur Thomas Highton


L-Cpl Arthur Thomas Highton, 3874, 1/5th Bedfords, died in the University War Hospital, Southampton, on November 10th, 1915, after suffering from dysentery at Gallipoli. He was aged 18.

The only son of cabinet maker Frederick George Highton and wife Annie (nee Harris), of Orlingbury, Havelock Road, Luton, he enlisted in the 1/5th Beds Regiment soon after the outbreak of war. He served in the Signals Section under Lieut F. W. Ballance (from Dunstable), and while in Gallipoli won his first stripe.

Lance Corporal Charles Bryan Hobbs


L-Cpl Charles Bryan Hobbs, 17138, 2nd Battalion Grenadier Guards, was killed in action in France on October 19th, 1915. He was aged 23 and had been in charge of a bomb-throwing section.

Tyneside-born L-Cpl Hobbs was the eldest son of Mrs Mary Robertson Hobbs and the late Mr Philip Hobbs. At the time of her eldest son's death Mrs Hobbs was living at 'Kentville,' 83 Conway Road, Luton.

Lance Corporal Rowland Abbott


L-Cpl Rowland Abbott, 4025, 1/5th Bedfords, died on August 21st, 1915, from wounds sustained at Gallipoli. Newspaper reports said he was aged 44.

On August 17th he wrote to his wife Lizzie Louisa at 77 Chase Street, Luton, saying he was quite well and that the regiment was gaining ground.

L-Cpl Abbott was born in Luton, the son of John William and Martha, who married in 1864. John William died in the early months of 1875, two years after Rowland was born. In 1881, Martha and her four children were living at 2 Brache Street, Luton, and later lived in Essex Street.

Lance Corporal Walter Dumpleton


L-Cpl Walter Dumpleton, 3715, 1/5th Beds Regt, was killed in action at Gallipoli on August 15th, 1915. Newspaper reports said he was aged 23 and the son of Frederick and Thirza Dumpleton, of 33 Burr Street, Luton. Census and other records suggest he was born in early 1890 and was therefore aged 25.

Lance Corporal Edwin Matthews

Edwin Matthews was born in Kensworth, a village on the outskirts on Dunstable in about 1879.

In 1891 he is a 10 year old schoolboy & living in the village with his father David 38, an agricultural labourer & mother Letitia 36, a straw plaiter. His 14 year old sister Louisa is working as a live-in domestic servant for the King family at 5 Gladstone Avenue, Luton.

In January 1903 Edwin married Annie Elizabeth Nicoll in Luton.

Lance Corporal Harry Whinnett


L-Cpl* Harry Whinnett, 9289, 1st Rifle Brigade, was killed in action on April 26th, 1915. Prior to the war he was a police constable in Grimsby whose mother lived at 103 Frederic Street, Luton.

His wife Annie and three children, who lived at 61 Fraser Street, Grimsby, learned of his death in an official War Office notification.

Harry Whinnett was the first Grimsby policeman to lose his life at the front. He had joined the police in May 1906 and was one of the few reservists in the Grimsby force. He was called up at the outbreak of hostilities.

Lance Corporal Augustus Fensome

Augustus Fensome was born in Luton in October 1894, only son of Albert & Sarah Ann.

His father was a printer & stationer. The family are living at 41 Waller Street in 1901.

In 1911 48 year old Sarah Ann is now widowed & has taken on the family business in Waller Street, 14 year old Augustus is working as a boy clerk, his 21 year old sister Hilda Muriel is living with them.

Lance Corporal Alfred Ward

Lance-Corporal Alfred Ward, 5697, 1st Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment, was killed in action near Wulvergem in Belgium on January 31st, 1915. He was aged 24.

Generally known as Samson, he was the son of Robert and Mary Ward, of 3 East Avenue, Park Street, Luton. His death had been mentioned in letters from friends at the front before the family received official news. They were not told by the War Office where he had been killed.

Lance Corporal Harry Hack

Lance Corporal Harry Hack, 9564, 1st Battalion, Beds Regt, was killed in action near Wulvergem in Belgium on January 8th, 1915. He was aged 26.

For his widow, who was living at 71 Ivy Road, Luton, it was the first of two tragedies within a week - the couple's only child, Harry Robert, died on January 14th, aged just five months.

Lance Corporal Percy Edward Woodcroft

Lance-Corporal Percy Edward Woodcroft, 9353, 2nd Beds Regt, was killed in action on October 31st, 1914. He was aged 23 and son of Mr and Mrs Edwin Woodcroft, of 73 Ivy Road, Luton.

A native of Colchester, he came to Luton with his parents and, with his brothers and sister, went to Surrey Street School. After leaving school he joined the Volunteers as a bugler boy, and when old enough enlisted with the Bedfords, going to Aldershot and from there to South Africa.


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