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Abbots Bromley’s Lost Generation

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Gilbert Cooper was born in 1892, Abbots Bromley to Charles H and Alice. The family lived at Georgian House, Bagot Street where Gilbert once scratched his name into the window. Our records show the family living at the house in 1901. By 1903, the family emigrated to Canada to start a new life. Gilbert enlisted in 1914 and served with the 16th Bn. Canadian Infantry (Manitoba Regt.) his occupation at the time was Bank Clerk. After arriving in France in July 1915, Gilbert was then wounded and sent to No2 Casualty Clearing Centre where he sadly died on the 25th of January aged just 23. His death certificate states “Died of Wounds” (shrapnel wound right leg, gunshot wound left arm, compound fracture). Gilbert is laid to rest at Bailleul Communal Cemetery, France. RIP Gilbert Cooper.

Charles Alfred Nash was born in 1887 and the son of George and Lydia of Bagot Street. Sadly George died in 1904 but Lydia kept the family farming business going. In 1908, Charles aged 21 decided to leave our shores for a better life and set sail for Canada. This is where we find him on the 1911 census in a place called Battleford (Saskatchewan). On the 20th August 1915 aged 28, Charles enlisted for voluntary overseas service with the Canadian Expeditionary Force and set sail to England on the 12th October 1916 to then go on to France to join the regiment.In 1917, Charles had a spell in hospital suffering from trench fever, which we understand today as an infection transmitted by body lice. In August 1918, Charles found himself in Amiens where he sustained shrapnel wounds to the abdomen – he was sent to the Casualty Clearing Station and after four days died from his wounds aged just 31. He is buried at Crouy British Cemetery, Somme, France.Back in Abbots Bromley, his mother Lydia received the devastating news. Lydia died in 1929 at age 71 and is buried in St Nicholas Churchyard. RIP Charles Alfred Nash

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