THOMPSON, Thomas Frederick

No.328428, Private, Frederick Thomas THOMPSON
Aged 25

8th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Friday, 12th October 1917

Thomas Frederick THOMPSON was born in Carlton in 1888 (Linton Q3-1888 3B:488), son of Frederick and Alma Anne THOMPSON (née DELLAR). (actually registered as THOMSON)
His father had first married Emma SAVAGE in 1862 in Kedington, and they had, by 1871, Martha [8], Arthur [3] and Henry George [11 months]. Emma died in 1875. In 1881 his father was a widower, at Carlton with the two sons, and in 1882 he married Alma Anne DELLAR

1891 census...Aged 2, he was at Sopham Hall, Carlton with his father, Frederick THOMPSON [49] farm labourer born Kedington; his mother; Alma [29], born Elmdon; half brothers Arthur [22] and Walter [18], both farm labourers, born Kedington; sisters Georgina [6] and Emma [4] and brother Sydney [11 months], all born in Carlton.

1901 census...Aged 12, farm labourer, he was at The Cottage, Norney, Carlton with his parents; half-brother Arthur (carter on farm), sisters Emma, Elizabeth [7] born Burrough Green (as TOMSON), Hephzibah [3] and Dorothy [9 months] both born in Carlton; brothers Sydney [10] and Tom [9], both born Carlton.

1911 census...Aged 22, horseman on farm, he was at 3 Carlton Green with his parents; sisters Elizabeth, Dorothy and Violet [7] born Carlton; brothers Ezekiel and Percy [5] born Carlton. One of the eleven children had died. Brother Thomas Thompson was at Louisberg Barracks, Bordon (near Aldershot) in the 29th Brigade, 125th Battery, Royal Field Artillery.

As Thomas Frederick, he married Alice Gertrude BRETT [16-4-1895] in Carlton on 23rd June 1912. His age is given as 24 and Alice as 17.

His pension card records children:- Doris Margery BRETT [21-10-1911] (qtr 4 Linton 3b:813), Francis Victor THOMPSON [3-4-1914] and Ellen Maud Alma THOMPSON [3-3-1917]. The address given as "near the Hall", Carlton.

"Soldiers Died" entry and also CWGC gives Frederick Thomas THOMPSON, No. 328428 as being in the 8th Suffolks, and "Soldiers Personal Effects has the same man with a widow Alice G. The medal index card for a Frederick THOMPSON, bearing that number is given as in the Cambridgeshire Regiment. With a father named Frederick, a brother named Thomas Frederick and seemingly called Fred himself, how identification can be made, even by family members. is a problem. The apparent age differences may even be due to mixing up the brothers, except that they both appeared to have scant regard to accuracy in that respect.

He enlisted in Newmarket.
At midnight on October 11-12 the 8th battalion began moving up towards Rose trench, near Poelcappelle on the Langemarck side. This was in preparation for the first battle of Passchendaele. It was a long march, in pouring rain, and on its way up the battalion was badly gas-shelled. Rose trench was found to be water filled and the surrounding ground was a swamp, churned up by shell-fire. For the rest of the night the troops had to stand in icy water up to their waists. Battalion HQ was in the debris of a small building called Pheasant farm which could only be entered by crawling on all fours. On October 12, at 5.25am, a British attack was launched between the Ypres-Roulers railway and Houthulst forest. An hour later Lieut.-Colonel Hill moved the battalion forward being directed towards the left corner of Poelcappelle. Between Rose trench and the Langemarck-Poelcappelle road heavy shelling was encountered. The whole ground was pock-marked with shell-holes, so full of water that men often had to struggle to prevent themselves from drowning. The valleys of the streams were altogether impassable and the operation was abandoned. The battalion suffered 232 casualties of which 23 were killed. Such were the conditions that only one of these was identified later. The rest have their names on the Tyne Cot Memorial.

Thomas Thompson is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium - panels 40-41 and 162-162A

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details