DOWNING, Christopher

No.G/65738, Private, Christopher DOWNING
Aged 30

2nd Battalion, Royal Fusiliers
Killed in Action on Thursday, 26th July 1917

Christopher Downing was born in Chippenham in 1887 (Newmarket Q1-1887 3B:535), baptised in Chippenham on 13th March 1887. He was the son of Samuel and Elizabeth DOWNING (née KEMP)

1891 census... Aged 4 he was at 1 New Row, Chippenham with his father Samuel DOWNING [34], an agricultural labourer, born in Chippenham; his mother [29], born in Finningham; his brother George [7] born in Chippenham and sisters Sarah [6] and Elizabeth J.[9 months], both born in Chippenham.

1901 census... Aged 14, an agricultural labourer, he was still at 1 New Row, Chippenham with his parents, brother George and sisters Sarah and Elizabeth, also new siblings, Emily [7], Ethel[3] and Bessie [8 months] all born in Chippenham.

1911 census... Aged 24, still single and a domestic gardener, he was still at 1 New Row, Chippenham with his parents, brother George, sisters Ethel and Bessie, new brother Ernest [8] and sister Nellie [5] both born in Chippenham. Of nine children, one had died.

On June 6th 1914, in Chippenham, he married Ethel Maud BISHOP [31-5-1890] (Newmarket Q2-1914 3B:1203). They had two children, Ethel May [19-1-1915] and Christopher [31-12-1916]. The pension card originally had the family at c/o Mrs Horne, Pattiswick, nr Braintree, deleted, and Chippenham, Cambs inserted.

He enlisted in Newmarket and his residence was given as Snailwell
It looks like Christopher was the only man of the 2nd battalion, Royal Fusiliers, killed that day, a lull in fighting immediately before the start of 3rd Ypres (Passchendaele) on the 31st July


Christopher Downing is buried in Canadian Farm Cemetery, Elverdinghe, Belgium grave 1:G:8

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