No. 21247, Private, Charles Edward TRUDGILL
Border Regiment, 2nd Battalion
Charles Edward TRUDGILL was born in Hockwold cum Wilton, registered Thetford Q4-1889 [4B:362]. He was the only son of Matthew and Susan TRUDGILL (née WHISTLER)|
1891 census...Aged 1, he was living at Nursery Lane, Hockwold with his father, agricultural labourer ; mother Susan and sister Anna  also James W Whistler [14?] step-son of Matthew All were born in Hockwold.
His father and mother married in 1883
1901 census...Aged 11, as Edward, he was living in Webb's Lane, Hockwold, with his parents. Father Matthew was now a yardman of cattle.
1911 census...As Edward, aged 21, a farm labourer, he was still living in Hockwold with his parents
On 25th October 1915 he married Clara FLACK [1-10-1891] (Mildenhall Q4-1915 4B:2819)
On 25th May 1915 he was attested as #19227 in Norfolk Regiment, giving his age as 25 years 9 months. He was 5'7 1/2" (171.5 cm) tall,
weighing 134 lbs (61 kg) and a chest of 38" to 40" (96.4 to 101.6 cm). His occupation was given as general labourer, living at High Street, Hockwold.|
On 22nd June 1915 he joined the 10th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment. It appeared he requested a transfer as a driver to the Army Service Corps, but instead he was transferred on 9th November 1915 to the Border Regiment, where his number was 21247.
He arrived in France on 31st December 1915 (just in time for the 1914-15 Star), joining the 2nd Battalion, Border Regiment. He was reported missing on 19th April 1916 and on 6 Feb 1917 his death was presumed to be on or since 19th April 1916.
His wife Clara, having been in receipt of a separation allowance of 9/= per week, plus allocation of pay of 3/6 from Charles, then had to exist on a pension of 10/= per week (50 p). By 1920 Clara was living at Mill Road, Lakenheath.
The 2nd Battalion, Border Regiment on 19th April 1916 - a summary from the war diary [National Archives Catalogue Reference: WO/95/1655] "At 7.25pm on 19/4/16 the enemy opened a violent bombardment on the subsector which the Battalion held. The front support and reserve lines were all shelled, the bombardment was most intense on the front from MANSEL COPSE to junction F10.1 and F10.2. At some time between 8.15 and 8.30pm the barrage was lifted between MANSEL COPSE and 71 Street and a party of the enemy approached our lines at the head of BLOOD ALLEY. They did not succeed in entering our trenches being driven back by bombs. They then appeared to have moved forward and they entered our front line trench somewhere in this subsector. A number of unexploded bombs were found in our trench. It is believed that the enemy left a few dead near MANSEL COPSE. The trenches were seriously damaged in many places both front line support line and communication trenches being blocked. Our casualties were 1 officer and 18 Other Ranks killed (Officer 2nd Lieut W.L. Johnson ), 2 offrs and 42 Other Ranks wounded (Officers *Lieut I.H. Hodgson [died next day], 2nd Lieut G.P. Lindsay.) *9 Other Ranks Missing."
Mansell Copse is a small wood just south of Mametz
click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details