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Essex Yeomanry in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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- Essex Yeomanry during the Great War -

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Essex Yeomanry

Territorial Force:

  • Essex Yeomanry 1-1st btn
  • Essex Yeomanry 2-1st btn
  • Essex Yeomanry 3-1st btn

       The Essex Yeomanry were a Territorial Unit, part of the Eastern Mounted Brigade with their HQ at 17 Sir Isaac's Walk, Colchester. A Squadron was drawn from Colchester, Clacton on Sea, Harwich, Walton on the Naze, Great Bentley and Ardleigh. B Squadron was drawn from Braintree, Halstead, Chelmsford and Tiptree. C Squadron from Waltham Abbey, Epping, Loughton, Bishop's Stortford, Newport and Dunmow. D Squadron from Southend on Sea, Brentwood, Grays, Stratford and Orsett.

    5th Aug 1914 Territorials mobilise at Colchester  At Colchester Camp, which has historically been an important military garrison, territorial units are mobilising for war. The men of 8th (Cyclist) Battalion Essex Regiment, The Essex Yeomanry and Essex Royal Horse Artillery are all ordered to prepare to take up their war stations.

    13th May 1915 Counter attack

    14th Oct 1915 Not Fair

    11th Apr 1917 Village Taken

    12th Apr 1917 Reliefs

    If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.

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    Those known to have served with

    Essex Yeomanry

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    Pte. Carl Horace Harper Essex Yeomanry

    Carl Horace Harper was born in January 1898 in Wix, Tendering, Essex. The 1901 census shows him living at 62 Windsor Road, St Matthews, Ipswich with his father Horace (age 25),mother Madaline (age 24), sisters Daisy age 5 & Muriel age 2, and brother Benjamin age 7 months. The 1911 census records Carl living with his grandfather Benjamin Horne at Ocean Wave Farm, working on the farm after he left school.

    On 7th October 1914 he enlisted in the 1st Essex Yeomanary cavalry regiment service no 1362. On 13th February 1915 he was sent to France as part of the B.E.F (British Expeditionary Force), joining up with the Royal Horse Guards & 10th (Prince of Wales Own) Hussars (this explains how Carl finished his career in the 10th Hussars). They formed the 8th cavalry brigade which was part of the 3rd cavalry division.

    In 1915 he saw action at the second battle of Ypres (battle of Frezenberg Ridge) 11th - 13th May & battle of Loos 26th - 28th September. In 1916 there are no notable records of battles. In 1917 he was in the battle of Arras (first battle of Scarpe) 9th - 12th April.

    He was transferred in 1917 to the corps of Hussars & was given service no 80985. On 30th March 1918 the 3rd cavalry division was split up onto 7/8th cavalry brigade as a dismounted unit in the trenches. Later the 7th became a cyclist brigade & 8th was cavalry, which is where Carl served.

    During WW1 Carl was wounded three times. He returned to England on 30th March 1919. All army service personnel had to re-enlist & Carl was given a third service no 537772, transferred to 18th (Queen Mary's Own) Hussars on 6th November 1919 & again transferring to the 10th (Prince of Wales) Hussars on 18th November 1919. Carl married Laura Mepstead on 6th December 1920 at Bridge, Kent. There are no records of children.

    On 6th June 1921 the 10th Hussars were sent to Northern Ireland, where they accompanied King George V on the first state opening of parliament on 21st June 1921. On the 24th June 1921 Carl was killed by rebel IRA activists at Adavoyle, Newry. A bomb was planted on the railway tracks just before the station killing 3 soldiers, 1 guard, 30 horses & injuring 30 men. On Tuesday 28th June Carl's coffin was repatriated at his parents' home in Margaret Street, Walton, Felixstowe and on Thursday 30th June a millitary funeral service was held at St Mary's church, Walton at 2pm. His Commonwealth war grave is at Walton church, High Street, Felixstowe, sited just through the main front gates.

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    Stephen Harper

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