Horace Wheatley

G/13508 , Private, 7th Battalion, Queens Royal West Surrey Regiment.

Missing in Action on the 8th November 1916.

Thiepval Memorial, Somme.

Horace was born in St.Albans, Hertfordshire. It is uncertain when he moved to Stevenage but his son, William, was born in the town in 1907. Horace was an Estate Gamekeeper and was working the Kimpton area by 1911, and eventually moved to Godstone, Surrey,where he enlisted in the Army.

The Battalion and had moved into the trenches from Albert on the night of 3rd November 1916, in order to relieve the men of the 10th Essex Regiment. They were situated in Regina & Hessian trench where they remained through the next few days. Life in the trenches at this time was desperately uncomfortable. The cold and wet of the winter months and the continual shelling by German artillery made every day a miserable event. The Battalion provided working parties to work on trench defences but the wet conditions seriously hampered their efforts. On the 6th November the Battalion moved from the frontline trenches to the nearby support trenches. Here they prepared to be relieved by the 7th Royal Kent Regiment and on the 8th November the relief began. This movement of troops became a target for the German artillery who began to shell the area very heavily, resulting in many casualties. It was during this relief that Horace Wheatley was killed.

He has no known grave and his name is recorded on the Thiepval Memorial. Somme, France. (Pier and Face 5 D and 6 D.)

Medal Entitlement: British War Medal & Victory Medal.

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