Lance Corporal Charles Henry Read

Poppy-2Killed In Action
Regiment: Royal Berkshire Regiment/Lincolnshire Regiment
Battalion: 5th Battalion/4th Battalion
Service Number: 36931
Date of Death: 30th November 1917
Age when killed: 25
Cemetery: Cambrai Memorial, Louverval Panel 8
Born: Huntingdon, 1892
Next of Kin: Wife: Mary Read of Chapel Lane Hoby
Daughter: Gladys Hack of Main Street Hoby

Charles was born in Huntingdon in 1892 and enlisted on 4th September 1914 at Stamford Lincolnshire, joining the 4th Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment. At the time he enlisted he was working as a groom at Normanton Hall, Rutland.

Charles Henry ReadCharles was sent to France on 10th September 1915. He was injured several times, most seriously during the Battles of Loos in October 1915 when he sustained gun shot wounds to his right arm and chest and again in September 1916 during the battle to regain Thiepval Ridge. Charles was sent back to England for hospital treatment and to Cork for convalescence. By this time Charles had transferred to 5th Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment. In November 1917, the Royal Berkshires were involved in the Battle of Cambrai. Charles was recommended for gallantry in the field for his bravery during the attack on 20th November 1917.

Charles was killed by a shell on 30th November 1917 near Bleak House. The officer commanding his company wrote to his widow Mary saying: I can only partly realise the sorrow you must feel at the loss of one who will be missed so much, but at the same time must feel proud of his gallant deeds and splendid life. He was an excellent N.C.O. and would have gone far in promotion, as he had been recommended for gallantry in the attack on 20th November.

Charles's medal record

Charles’s medal record

Cambrai Memorial Louveral

Cambrai Memorial Louveral

Charles was awarded the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

When Charles’s death was confirmed Mary and her three children were served with an eviction notice and moved to Thrussington to live with relatives. They later moved to Chapel Lane Hoby. Charles and Mary’s daughter Gladys Hack lived in Hoby for the rest of her life.

Charles is commemorated on the Cambrai memorial at Louverval and on the headstone of his wife Mary, who is buried in the grave yard extension at Hoby. The headstone is classified as a War Memorial by the War Memorials Trust.

Charles is remembered in Hoby

Charles is remembered in Hoby