POOLEY, Percy Edward

No.L/14082, Private, Percy Edward POOLEY
Aged 27

3rd Battalion, Middlesex Regiment (Duke of Cambridge's Own)
Killed in Action on Monday 15th February 1915

Percy Edward Pooley was born in Ashley in 1888 (Newmarket Q1-1889 3B:528), son of Jesse and Eliza POOLEY (née WOOLLARD).

1891 census...Aged 2, he was in Church Street, Ashley cum Silverley, with his father Jesse POOLEY [25] a baker, born Caston, Norfolk; his mother Eliza [25] born London; sister Eveline [3] born Ashley, and brother Cecil [6 months] born Ashley.

1901 census...Aged 12, he was in High Street, Ashley with his parents, brother Cecil and sister Elise [7] and Winifred [6] both born in Ashley.

1911 census...Aged 21 he was apparently in Finchley, a butcher working at Pulham & Sons, Wellington House, High Street, Finchley according to his Army records. However the census has Percy Pooley lodging at Wellington House but born in Haslemere, Surrey ?. His parents were still in Ashley with sisters Elise, Winifred, Blanche [9] and Nora [1] and brother Eric [7]. The new siblings were all born in Ashley. Their address by 1912 was Chalk Terrace, Ashley, but by 1915 they were at Bridge House, Moulton.

The family's move to Moulton must explain Percy's name on the Moulton memorial as well as on the Ashley memorial

He enlisted in Mill Hill, Middlesex.
He first enlisted on 12th February 1912 in the 5th Reserve Battalion, Middlesex Regiment No. 8775, giving his age as 22years 2 months. His parents' address was Chalk Terrace, Ashley.
On 13th May 1912 he signed as a regular solider for 7 years in the colours in the Middlesex Regiment, No L/14082. His age was 22 years 5 months, 5ft 3 inches tall (160 cm), weighing 125 lbs (56.9 kg) and chest 36"-38" (91.4 to 96.5 cm), brown eyes, brown hair, Church of England and occupation, butcher. He had served a 2 years apprenticeship with butcher C.Spurling in Cheveley and was residing at Wellington House, High Street, Finchley working for PULHAM Bros, Butchers.
Posted to 4th battalion on 5th July 1915, he was again posted, to the 3rd battalion on 9th October 1913 on arrival in India at Plassey. on 1st November 1913 he was in Cawnpore.
The battalion returned to Winchester, England in December 1914 and he arrived via Le Havre with the BEF in France/Flanders on 18th January 1915. Posted missing on 15th February 1915 his body was never identified and he is named on the Menin Gate in Ypres.
The battalion were in the 'O' and 'P' trenches near St Elois and were relieved by the Suffolks on the 15th February. The figures for casualties are somewhat confused as CWGC numbers do not tally with war diary numbers, but this may be due to an accurate roll call not being taken until they were out of the line.
CWGC give 62 of the 3rd battalion killed on 15th February, not one has an identified grave.

photo: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Percy Pooley is commemorated on the Menin Gate, panels 49-51
and on the Moulton memorial.

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