Everton Village Hall
Everton village hall is a community hall run by volunteers for the benefit of the village

Everton Soldiers

GS/60020 – Pte. Archibald Frank Baker

26th (Service) Battalion Royal Fusiliers (Bankers)

124th Brigade, 41st Division

K.I.A. 6th February 1917

Son of Robert and Fanny Baker of Everton, Sandy, Beds.

Resided Sandy, enlisted in Sandy.

Frank went to France some time after 1st January 1916 as he was only awarded the British War and Victory medals.

The 41st Division was formed as part of the 5th New Army (Kitchener Volunteers) and mainly recruited in London. The 26th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers was raised by the Lord Mayor of London from bank clerks and accountants from the City.

The division landed in France in early May 1916 and moved to the Flanders area around Ypres. In July 1916 the division moved down to the Somme to take part in the offensive which had opened on the first day of that month.

They famously captured the village of Flers on 15th September 1916 aided by the first use of tanks on the Western Front.

In February 1917 the 41st Division had moved back to the Ypres Sector where Frank was killed in action on the 6th of that month aged 20 years. He is buried in Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery south of Ypres.

19047 – Pte. William James Chapman

1st Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

15th Brigade, 5th Division

K.I.A. 20th April 1915

Son of Samuel and Ann Chapman of Everton, Sandy, Beds.

Husband of Clara (née Dennis) of 11 Everton.

Born and resided in Everton, enlisted in Bedford.

William landed in France on the 4th January 1915 and joined the 1st Bedfords who were in reserve at Bailleul on the France/Belgium border. He remained in the Ypres Sector until his death on 20th April 1915.

On the 17th April 1915 the 1st Bedfords were in reserve for the attack on the strongly held German position on Hill 60. The British had exploded six mines under the German front line just before our troops went over and captured the objective. The Germans immediately counter attacked and regained some ground. The British attacked again and retook the lost ground.

On the 20th April the Germans counter attacked again accompanied by a heavy artillery bombardment which continued into the night. The battle continued into the next day.

Hill 60 was fought over many times because of its strategic position with views over the Flanders battlefield. It was no higher than the upper windows of a two storey house but with excellent observation provided on the flat Flanders plain this, for the High Command, was a prize worth having.

William was among the 100 other ranks (O/Rs) killed between the 18th-21st April 1915. On the 30th April the 1st Bedfords received a draft of 3 officers and 300 O/Rs to replace the recent losses.

Pte. Chapman was 32 years old and has no known grave. His name is among the 54000 names on the Menin Gate memorial to the Missing in Ypres. He had been overseas for barely 4 months.

3/4616 – Sgt. Albert Edward Darlow

8th (Service) Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

16th Brigade, 6th Division

D.O.W. 8th December 1917

Born and resided in Everton, enlisted in Ampthill.

Albert’s service number 3/4616 would suggest that he was a pre-war reservist and had previous service with the Bedfords. He went to France some time after 1st January 1916 to join the 8th Bedfords.

The 8th Bedfords were one of the few Kitchener battalions to be committed to the Battle of Loos in September 1915, and were in the line when the Germans first used phosgene gas in December 1915 when they lost hundreds of men. In 1916 they were involved in the Somme battles.

In 1917 the 8th Bedfords took part in the battle for Hill 70 in April and the Battle of Cambrai during the famous tank attack and the Battle of Bourlon Wood in November 1917 which gained so much ground. The Germans counterattacked during November-December and retook much of the ground they had lost.

Sergeant Darlow died on the 8th December 1917 as a result of wounds received during the Cambrai/Bourlon Wood operations. He is buried in Rocquigny-Equancourt Road British Cemetery.

23265 – Pte. John Endersby

1st Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

15th Brigade, 5th Division

K.I.A. 23rd October 1918

Born and resided in Everton, enlisted in Ampthill.

John joined the 1st Bedfords some time after 1st January 1916.

He was killed in action on 21st October 1918 during the “Advance to Victory” which was the most successful period of the war for the allied armies. This was the war of movement desired by Haig to finish the war in 1918.

On the 23rd October 1918 the 1st Bedfords were involved in the Battle of the Selle and captured the village of Beaurain. They were relieved in the evening and returned to billets in Caudry.

Casualties for other ranks on the day were:

14 killed in action

105 wounded

5 missing.

The war would finish in three weeks’ time on 11th November 1918. The Germans continued to inflict severe casualties on the allied troops right up to the end of the war.

Pte. Endersby has no known grave and his name is among the 10,000 names on the Vis-en-Artois Memorial to the Missing.

G/50510 – Pte. Parker Giggle

2nd Battalion Middlesex Regiment

23rd Brigade, 8th Division

K.I.A. 31st July 1917

Born and resided in Everton, enlisted in Bedford.

Husband of Mary Giggle (née Chapman)

of 5, Council Cottages, Everton.

Parker went overseas some time after 1st January 1916.

He was killed in action on the opening day of the Third Battle of Ypres on 31st July 1917. This offensive soon got bogged down in the sodden ground after days of continuous rain. The offensive, better known as Passchendaele, ended in November 1917 with over 300,000 allied casualties.

Pte. Giggle is buried in Hooge Crater Cemetery; he was nearly 34 years of age.

Mary was widowed with two children, Ethel (aged 7) and Stanley (aged 4).

12999 – Pte. William James Hull

7th and 8th (Service) Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

16th Brigade, 6th Royal Naval Division

K.I.A. 15th September 1916

Born and resided in Everton. Enlisted in Biggleswade.

Son of William and Agnes Hull of Everton.

William landed in France on the 26th July 1915 with the advance party of the 7th Bedfords. They were sent to the relatively quiet sector on the Somme where they manned trenches during the remainder of 1915 and early 1916.

It is very possible that he was wounded during this period as he was at some time transferred to the 8th Bedfords, the unit he was serving with on the 15th September 1916 when they attacked the heavily defended German strong point known as the Quadrilateral (Battle of Flers-Courcelette). The great Somme offensive had opened on the 1st July 1916 and did not run down until November of 1916. The losses on both sides were some of the heaviest of the war.

The attack commenced at 6.20 a.m. and would be assisted by “tanks”. At 6.00 a.m. our artillery opened a heavy barrage on the German lines which intensified at 6.20 a.m. and unfortunately caused heavy casualties to the Bedfords who had already advanced into no-mans-land. Although the Bedfords were supported by the 1st Bluffs and the 2nd York and Lancasters, the position was not taken. The tanks did not arrive. The Bedfords were put into brigade reserve due to their heavy casualties suffered in the attack. The Quadrilateral was taken three days later on the 18th September. The Bedfords remained in reserve for this attack.

Private Hull has no known grave and his name is amongst the 72,000 names on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing on the Somme.

22812 – Pte. John Hull

4th (Special Reserve) Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

190th Brigade, 63rd Royal Naval Division

K.I.A. 8th February 1917

Born and resided in Everton. Enlisted in Bedford.

Son of William and Agnes Hull of Everton.

John landed in France with the 4th Bedfords on the 25th July 1916. The 4th Bedfords were a Special Reserve battalion which would normally supply reinforcement drafts to the Bedfordshire battalions already in France and Flanders. Due to heavy losses sustained by the British Army during the opening battles of the Somme offensive which commenced on the 1st July 1916, the 4th Bedfords were sent out as a full strength battalion.

They joined the 63rd Royal Naval Division who were unique in that they were made up of sailors and marines and surplus to requirements for manning the ships of the Royal Navy.

John was involved in the Ancre battles on the Somme in late 1916 and early 1917. He was killed in action on the 8th February 1917 during the action at Miramont. Other rank casualties were…

68 killed

90 wounded

3 missing

45 missing believed killed.

Private Hull is buried in the Ancre British Cemetery at Beaumont-Hamel on the Somme. He was 21 years old.

43159 – Pte. James Lawson

6th (Service) Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment

54th Brigade, 18th (Eastern) Division

K.I.A. 3rd April 1918

Born Tetworth

James was the fourth son of William and Phoebe Lawson.

Owing to having a slight speech impediment, James was refused entry to the Army several times. Eventually accepted into the Bedfordshire Regiment, he received training at Dovercourt then transferred to the Northamptonshire Regiment. After three months’ service in France, he was wounded by shrapnel in September 1916 and invalided home. He returned to France in March 1917, came home on leave after 11 months and was killed two months after returning to the front.

On the 21st March 1918 the Germans launched their Kaiserschlacht Offensive (The Kaiser’s battle). This offensive was the German’s last chance to break the Allied line and finish the war before the Americans arrived in large numbers. The 18th Division was defending a thinly held part of the line at the southern end of the thirty mile battle front opposite La Fere. Eventually the Allies were pushed back over the old Somme battlefield as the British Army retreated westwards losing more ground in one day than they had captured in 140 days during the Somme battles.

James was killed in action on the 3rd April 1918, 13 days into the retreat and his name is among the 14,000 names on the Pozieres Memorial to the Missing. He has no known grave.

GS 13965 – Pte. Walter Lee Lawson

2nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers

86th Brigade, 29th Division

K.I.A. 5th September 1918

Born and resided in Everton. Enlisted in Welwyn.

Lee was the son of Samuel and Sophia Lawson.

Lee landed in France on the 16th March 1915 and went to Gallipoli with the 29th Division (The Iron Division) in April 1915.

The 29th Division were evacuated from the Gallipoli debacle in early January 1916 and spent three months in Egypt before returning to the Western Front where they fought in the Somme battles of 1916.

During 1917 the 29th Division were involved in the Arras, Passchendale and Cambrai offensives. The 29th Division remained in the Ypres area during 1918 and Lee was killed in action on the 5th September 1918 during the capture of Ploegsteert and Hill 63 during the Advance to Victory.

Private Lawson has no known grave and his name is among the 11,000 names on the Ploegsteert (Plugstreet) Memorial to the Missing.

G/43378 – Pte. Thomas George Meeks

16th (Public Schools) Battalion Middlesex Regiment

86th Brigade, 29th Division

K.I.A. 1st December 1917

Born in Tetworth. Enlisted in Bedford

Thomas originally served with the 17th Territorial Battalion of the Middlesex regiment. Some time after 1st January 1916 he landed in France and was transferred to the 16th (Public Schools) Battalion.

Private Meeks was killed in action on the 1st December 1917 during the heavy German counter attacks launched to re-take the ground lost to the Allies in the November Cambrai offensive. He has no known grave and his name appears on the Cambrai Memorial at Louverval which contains 7,000 names of the missing.