TURNER, Frederick William

No.14846, Private, Frederick William TURNER
Aged 29

1st Battalion, The Queen's (Royal West Surrey Regiment(
Died of Illness as PoW on Tuesday, 8th October 1918

Frederick William Turner was born in Eriswell (3rd July according to German forms (wrong year though) (Mildenhall Q3-1889 4A:708) son of George and Mary TURNER (née FULLER).

1891 census...Aged 1, he was at Cottage, Eriswell with his father George TURNER [31] farmer's groom born Wangford; his mother Mary [39] born Mildenhall; brothers Arthur [8], Charles [7] and Frank [5]; sister Alice [3]. All the children were born in Eriswell.

1901 census...Aged 11, he was at Needham Street, Gazeley with his parents (father now stockman); brothers Charles and Frank (farm labourers), Sidney [9] born Eriswell and George [4] born Barton Mills; sister Alice Violet M..

He married Alice Eliza GOOCH [4-1-1887] (Bury St Edmunds Q4-1910)

1911 census...Aged 21, a farm labourer, he was at The Court, Fornham All Saints with his wife Alice [20] born Fornham All Saints and their daughter Alice Violet [18-12-1910] born Fornham All Saints.

They went on to have four children, Alice Violet (18-12-1910-1990), Frederick George (17-9-1912-1975), Leslie William (14-7-1914-2005) and Vera Blanche (19-8-1918-2006).

He enlisted in July 1915. He is on the scroll in Westley Church just as "F Turner died as PoW." .
He was captured on 14th April 1918 at Meteren, wounded in left arm. He died at No 1 Prisoner of War camp near Oudenaarde of a heart failure from influenza and buried by the Germans in Oudenaarde.
His battalion had 27 killed the day he was captured at Meteren. They had just taken up position south of Meteren to defend the village. They suffered from 12th to 14th April - 2 Officers killed, 10 wounded, 1 missing - O.R.s 36 killed 161 wounded, 160 missing.

Here by courtesy of relative is the letter Fred wrote from the prisoner of war camp which his widow received about the time he died. Also the source of his photograph.

Mrs, F. W Turner.
Fornham All Saints.
Nr. Bury St Edmunds.
Suffolk. England.

Stamped 15. 9.18....And another stamp Paid Oct.9.18.
3rd August 1918.
My Dear Wife and family,

I am writing a few lines to you all and hoping this will find you all quite well as it leaves me quite well at present. I want you to let me know how my brothers are and also yours. I want to know how Archey Peachey and George are. Let me know how Frank and George are and also Uncle Dick and Aunt Alice. I want to know how you have been getting on with the alotment (sic) and what sort of crop of potatoes and other vetatables(sic) you have got on it.
I don't expect you want to do it. Let me know when you think things will come off. I hope you have been taken care of yourself all you possibly could.
I expect that you have a job with the children to keep them right especially the boy Billy. How does the boy Fred and Emily get on at school now.
I was captured on the 14 April and I have been treated very well up till the present.
What was my sisters (baby?) after all. And how does they all get on. Have you heard anything more about him? I think that all for this time with my best love to you. ................. From Your Loving Husband Fred.

(His sister's baby was Phyllis Debenham, not sure who Emily was)

Frederick Turner is buried in Oudenaarde Communal Cemetery, centre of East part
and on the roll of honour in Westley St Mary's Church

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