FARRANT, Charles {MiD}

No. PO/8883, Private, Charles FARRANT
Aged 35

Portsmouth Battalion, RN Div., Royal Marine Light Infantry
Died of his Wounds on Thursday, 6th May 1915

He was entitled to, but his mother never claimed, the clasp to his 1914 Star

Queen's South Africa and R.Marines Long Service

Charles Farrant was born in Great Wratting (Risbridge Q4-1879 4A:55), baptised Great Wratting, St Mary's on 18th January 1880, son of Walter and Meanna Lois FARRANT (née CLARK ). His mother sometimes recorded as Louisa.

1881 census...Aged 1, he was at Spring Hall, Great Wratting with his father Walter FARRANT [55] shepherd, born Great Wratting;his mother Meanne L [32] born Birdbrook, Essex; sisters Ellen [11] born Kedington and Louisa [3] born Great Wratting; brothers John [8] and Thomas [6] both born in Great Wratting,

1891 census...Aged 11, he was at Willow? Farm, Withersfield, with his parents (mother now recorded as Louisa); brothers John (shepherd) and Thomas [16] (farm labourer); sisters Louisa, Ada [8] and Annie [5]. The new sisters were born in Great Wratting.

1901 census...Aged 22, he was at HMS Minotaur, a training ship at Portland. His parents were at 5 New Row, Chippenham, Cambs with his sisters Louisa and Annie.

1911 census...Aged 32, he was at Gosport, a private in the Royal Marines Light Infantry. His parents were at The Green, Great Wratting.

The pension card has his mother c/o Mrs DIGGIN, Rectory Lodge. Little Chesterfield, Saffron Walden, this is deleted and replaced with Great Wratting, Haverhill.

He enlisted in 1897. According to the register of Deaths at Sea, his date of birth was 18th November 1878. The Royal Navy and Royal Marine Graves Roll records his death as "killed or died as a direct result of enemy action". Navy and Marine records have him born in 1878, so it seems he added a year when enlisting
More interestingly the Royal Navy, 1914 Star Medal Roll 1914-1920 says he served with the Portsmouth Battalion at Dunkirk and Defence of Antwerp 1914, and Middle East Expeditionary Force from 28 Feb 1915, dying of his wounds in Deaconess' Hospital, Alexandria. He was entitled to the clasp to the 1914 Star (issued to his mother Mrs M.L. Farrant 30/7/1919, before the clasp was instituted), but the clasp was not claimed.

The battalion went into action at Shrapnel Gully on 29th April, a probable place for his wounding, subsequently evacuated to Egypt.

His Royal Marines register shows he gave his date of birth as 18th November 1878 when he enlisted at Eastney on 14th January 1897, father Walter Farrant of Great Wratting, nr. Haverhill.His service included:-
Rec Depot,Walmer 29/1/97 to 28/9/97 --Portsmouth Div 29/9/97 to 19/8/98 when he joined HMS Monarch. He landed in South Africa and fought in the Boer War gaining clasps for Belmont (23rd Nov.1899) and Modder River (28 Nov.1899) and gained the Queen's South Africa medal with those clasps and the South Africa 1901 clasp. He was back in England just in time for the 1901 census. Then the usual service posting inter war before landing in Ostend on 26th August 1914, and going on to the defence of Antwerp (12/9/1914 to 13/10/1914 and was there "mentioned" for "served with distinction".
By early 1915 he was in Gallipoli. Wounded in action ashore, on 28th April 1915 he was evacuated to Egypt, where he died of his wounds in Deaconess' Hospital, Alexandria.

photo: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Charles Farrant is buried in Alexandria (Chatby) Military and War Memorial Cemetery grave A:18

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

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