Walter SIMS (17th September 1878 – 2nd January 1915)

Walter SIMS was born on 17th September 1878[1] at Leigh Farm, St Mary Bourne, Hampshire.  He was the son of Walter SIMS (1828-1914) and Mary BEVIS (1842-1918).  Walter had a brother Sidney, eight half siblings from his father’s first marriage to Rhoda GOODYEAR (Charles, George, William, Fred, John Daniel, Annie Levinia & Wallace) and four … Read moreWalter SIMS (17th September 1878 – 2nd January 1915)

Christmas Truce of 1914

Originally from the Illustrated London News[1] By Christmas 1914 Frederick George DAY, Sydney GUNNELL and Edwin DAY had all sadly been killed serving King and Country in the First World War leaving only Walter SIMS and James PIKE from St Mary Bourne’s Old Contemptible’s still alive.  Walter my 3 * Great Uncle and James as … Read moreChristmas Truce of 1914

Edwin Pike (17th May 1881 – 19th December 1914)

Edwin was the son of Albert PIKE and Ann GIBBONS he born on the 17th May 1881 and baptised at the local Primitive Methodist chapel on the 15th July 1881[1]. Primitive Methodist Chapel, Swampton, St Mary Bourne[2] On the 5th April 1891 Edwin was living in St Mary Bourne with his parents, older brother Herbert … Read moreEdwin Pike (17th May 1881 – 19th December 1914)

1st Hampshire Regiment – December 1914

Below is my transcription of the 1st Hants War Diary for the month of December 1914.  In addition to the diary there are a few extracts from the book “Good Old Somersets. An ‘Old Contemptible’ Battalion in 1914”.  The Christmas truce of 1914 is briefly mentioned in this post but more information will be posted … Read more1st Hampshire Regiment – December 1914

Sidney GUNNELL (15th Nov 1885 – 23rd Nov 1914)

Sidney was born in St Mary Bourne on the 15th November 1885 in St Mary Bourne[1], likely one of 15 children born of Thomas GUNNELL & Mary Jane GOODYEAR[2] (the exact number of children has yet to be verified, along with all their names).  A few months after his birth Sidney was christened at the … Read moreSidney GUNNELL (15th Nov 1885 – 23rd Nov 1914)

Service of Remembrance, Andover 9th November 2014

This morning was the Service of Remembrance in my hometown of Andover, although I have many times before watched the parade through town this was the first time I had actually gone to the service held at the Garden of Remembrance outside of St Mary’s Church, as expected it was packed with people there to … Read moreService of Remembrance, Andover 9th November 2014

Frederick George DAY (6th February 1888 – 2nd November 1914)

Frederick George DAY was born on the 6th February 1888[1] in St Mary Bourne.  His parents were George DAY and Sarah Ann SMITH, they married in Hurstbourne Tarrant in December 1883[2] (unfortunately the actual day is unreadable in the registers). St Peter’s Church, Hurstbourne Tarrant The DAY family did not originate in St Mary Bourne, … Read moreFrederick George DAY (6th February 1888 – 2nd November 1914)

1st Hampshire Regiment, October 1914 – France to Belgium

Since the last post the men have now moved off on night marches towards Belgium, this continued from the 6th – 15th October.  On the 15th the Hants were ordered to take NIEPPE, fighting occurred here in which the men of St Mary Bourne would have taken part.  After clearing the enemy from NIEPPE they … Read more1st Hampshire Regiment, October 1914 – France to Belgium

September 1914 inc. The Battles of Marne & Aisne


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Since the last post, the men of the 1st Hampshire regiment (1st Hants) have continued advancing on the Germans who have now been retiring.  The 1st Hants war diary states that on the 8th September 1914 “The Battle of Marne commenced”.  This I believe is most likely for them as the official dates for this … Read moreSeptember 1914 inc. The Battles of Marne & Aisne

August 25th – early September, inc. The Battle of Le Cateau

British Infantry marching through a French village[1] From the private diary of Lt. Col. F.R. Hicks, 1st Battalion The Hampshire Regiment, August 1914 (included with the Battalion War Diary for 1914). 25th August – Reached Busigny – the advanced Base.  About 3 a.m. There we were met by a Staff Officer, who told us that there … Read moreAugust 25th – early September, inc. The Battle of Le Cateau

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