A – C

Including Turks disguised as Gurkhas and a soldier who returned to live and raise a family in Biddenham:

Abelsom, Private Alec and his brother Abelsom, Private Mark both of the 1st Monmouthshire Regiment, who were listed in The Aberdare Leader of 3 June 1916, together with Private Lewis Corb (below) under the heading ‘Jewish boys with the Forces’.

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Abelson, 226896 Private Mark of the Monmouthshire Regiment, who enlisted in Aberdare on 12 December 1915, and is  recorded in ‘Lives of the First World War’.

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Abrahams, Private W of the 2/1st WCCS, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Adams, Lieutenant George of the 4th Welsh Regiment, from Haverfordwest, who was promoted on the battlefield in the Dardanelles, and who, as reported fully in the Haverfordwest and Milford Haven Telegraph of 24 November 1915, received a hearty and cordial reception on his return to his home town whilst recovering from being wounded in action. He too commented, as had Gunner R Frederick Thomas, on the death in battle of Captain Howard, from Haverfordwest, whose solicitude and anxiety for the welfare of his men could not possibly be exaggerated.

He gave his impressions of the campaign and described an occasion when the Turks had disguised themselves as Gurkhas. An officer spotted them and shouted ‘they are Turks, there are no Gurkhas near here’. Instantly the enemy heard this, they shot and killed Lieutenant Adams’ friend and turned and fled back towards their trenches. But not one reached them, all being shot dead before they had gone many yards.

Lieutenant George Adams, 4th Welsh Regiment
Lieutenant George Adams, 4th Welsh Regiment

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Adams, Sergeant of the 7th Cheshires, who gave a “strong man” exhibition at the boxing competition held in Russell Park, Bedford, in June 1915.

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Anderson, Bugler C J of the 2/6th RWF, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Arnold, Trumpeter of the 2/1st WRFA, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Ayling, Sergeant-Major of the Welsh Horse.

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Bachelor, Private Frederick George of the 2nd Monmouthshire Regiment, from Abertysswg, whose wife, aged 29 years, was tragically knocked down and killed by a railway train in August 1915 whilst Private Bachelor was stationed in Bedford. The last time he had seen his wife alive was three weeks after Christmas.

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Baker, Major of the 2/5th Royal Welsh Fusiliers, starter of the troops cross country race in Bedford on 26 July 1916.

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Baker, 9667 Lance-Corporal Alfred of B Company of the 2/4th Royal Welsh Fusiliers, latterly from Chester but born and previously living in Ilkeston, a bricklayer by trade but who prior to enlistment had qualified as an architect, who died on 26 July 1916,  aged 31 years, competing in a six mile cross country race at Brickhill Farm, having the day before been on a 14 mile route march. He was buried with full military honours in the Park Cemetery, Ilkeston, on Sunday, 6 August.

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Barry, Private Will of the 5th Welsh, from Aberaman.

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Bauser, 2152 Private Thomas Paul of the 1/1st Battalion, Herefordshire Regiment. His diary records that he stayed briefly in Bedford from 6 May to 13 May 1915, when he was billeted at 46 Marlborough Road. During that time he was promoted to Lance-Corporal. On 15 May he received a letter from the War Office gazetting him as a Second Lieutenant in the 9 King’s Shropshire Light Infantry. He returned to Bedford on 18 May to report to Lieutenant-Colonel St Aulyn at the ‘dancing’ academy (most probably ‘Madame Demery’s’ at 2 Grafton Road/145 Midland Road, which was taken over by the military for the duration of the Great War). On 19 May he commenced his training course; and on 22 May he was married in Bedford by special licence to Gwendoline Kate Morgan of Hereford.

46 Marlborough Road in 2015
46 Marlborough Road in 2015

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Baynham, Bombardier H of the 1st Welsh Howitzer Brigade, 53rd Welsh Division, from Swansea, competitor in the water polo tournament at Bedford in June 1915.

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Beer,Gunner Arthur of the 1st Welsh, Royal Field Artillery, who saved a woman from drowning in the River Ouse in August 1915.

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Bell, Richard of the 1st Welsh Howitzer Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, was charged in Swansea Police Court in June 1915 with being an absentee from the Brigade at Bedford and was remanded to await an escort.

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Belmont, Driver of the 1/2nd Welsh Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, who competed in the military aquatic sports in July 1915.

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Berrow, Sergeant of the 2/3rd Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment, who whilst at Howbury Camp was in charge, with CSM Watkins, of the bearer party provided by the Battalion at the funeral of Drummer Ware, of the Bedfordshire Regiment, in Renhold.

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Beynon, Private Harold of the 5th Welsh Regiment, from Aberaman, whose father, Private Beynon senior, joined as a saddler.

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Bibbs, Private F G  of the 2/3rd WFA, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Bland, Sergeant G L of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Botton, Captain of the 2/3rd Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment, who whilst at Howbury Camp attended the funeral of Drummer Ware, of the Bedfordshire Regiment, in Renhold at which the Battalion provided a firing party.

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Boulton, Second-Lieutenant R J of the 2nd Battalion, the Herefordshire Regiment, part of the first reinforcement draft of 47 men who left for Gallipoli in August 1915.

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Bowden, Private Wilfred of the 5th Welsh, who was in August 1915 expecting to start for the Dardanelles, from Abercynon.

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Bowe, Private H D of the No 3 Co, ASC, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Bowen, Major A Ll  of the1/4th Welsh Regiment, whose mother made an appeal in The Camarthen Weekly Reporter of 9 July 1915 on behalf of 250 Llanelly boys then at Bedford and under orders for the Mediterranean, for Cholera belts.

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Bratt, Private J H of the 2/7th Cheshires, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Brinsden, Gunner Albert Henry of the 1st Glamorgan, Royal Field Artillery, from Swansea, was charged in May 1915 with being an absentee and remanded to await an escort.

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Brooks, 47248 Private Samuel of the 4th Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment, from Kempston, died 5 November 1917 and is buried in Kempston Cemetery, Bedford.

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Brown, Private W J of the Brecknockshire Regiment, from Cefn-y-Bedd.

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Brymer, Major George of the Royal Garrison Artillery, from Meifod, who married Miss Bertha Farr of 2 Pemberley Crescent, Bedford, in October 1917.

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Bowden, Private of the 5th Welsh, from Abercynon, was expecting as reported on 14 August 1915 to leave that week for the Dadanelles.

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Budd, Lieutenant C F N of the 1/4th Welsh Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, who competed in the military aquatic sports in July 1915.

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Burn, Captain of the 1/1st Welsh Company, the Royal Engineers, played in a cricket match against The Barracks, Kempston, on 3 July 1915.

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Burrows, 290231 Private Warren of the Monmouthshire Regiment, from Llangattock  Lingoed, near Abergavenny. Based at the Howbury Camp in Bedford when in August 1916 he married May Mason of Biddenham. After the war he returned to the village to raise a family of three sons. He remained in the village and died in June 1961.

Warren Burrows' marriage register entry
Warren Burrows’ marriage register entry
Extract showing his residence at the time as Howbury Camp
Extract showing his residence at the time as Howbury Camp

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Carey, Private A V of the 1/5th Welsh, from Abercwmboi.

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Carter, Driver A J of the Divisional Signal Company, who took part in the Easter Monday Eisteddfod in the Skating Rink in April 1916.

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Cawsey, Gunner Fred of the 2nd Welsh AC, military police, who gave evidence in a case of a stolen skirt before the magistrates on 25 October 1915.

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Chambers, Corporal R P of the Army Service Corps, from Glynceiriog.

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Channing, Sergeant J with a Cavalry unit, from Ystalyfera.

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Charlton, Captain P of the 1/4th Welsh Brigade, Royal Field Artillery, who competed in the military aquatic sports in July 1915.

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Clarke, Signaller Lambert of the 2/6th Cheshire Regiment, from Cwmaman, was reported on 25 March 1916 to have been in hospital for the previous four weeks.

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Coleman, Private of the 2/4th Royal Welsh Fusiliers, B Company, runner in the troops cross country race in Bedford on 26 July 2916.

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Collins, 4762 Private Fred of the  2/6th Battalion, Royal Welch Fusiliers. Born and enlisted in Bury, Lancashire. Died on 18 May 1916 and buried in Bedford Cemetery, Foster Hill Road. His tragic death was reported in the Bedfordshire Times and Independent of 19 May 1916.

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Cook, Captain John of the 2/1st Welsh Field Ambulance, the Royal Army Medical Corps.

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Corb, Private Lewis of the 1st Monmouthshire Regiment, from Mountain Ash.

Corfield, Gunner Robert of the Cardigan Battery of the 1/2nd Welsh Brigade, the Royal Field Artillery, a hairdresser from Aberystwyth, having volunteered for overseas service, died while on a training exercise practising artillery drills in a field off Ampthill Road, Bedford, in August 1915. He was buried with full military honours in Aberystwyth. After a long campaign by the West Wales War Memorial Project his death was officially recognised in 2014 and his name entered in the United Kingdom Book of Remembrance and in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission data base.

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Cracknell, Private of the 2/1st Brecknockshire Regiment, B Company, runner in the troops cross country race in Bedford on 26 July 1916.

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Creedon, Corporal Dennis of the Army Service Corps.

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Crookenden, Brigade-Major A of the 59th Infantry Brigade, and judge at the boxing competition held in Russell Park, Bedford, in June 1915.

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