GASKING, Percy Robert

No.14898, Private, Percy Robert GASKING
Aged 29

8th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on 28th September 1916

Percy Robert Gasking was born in Ixworth (1st qtr 1887 Thingoe 4a:694) son of Harry and Emily GASKING (née REVENS).

1891 census...Aged 4, he was at Bailey Pool Bridge. Ixworth with his father Harry GASKING [29] farm labourer; his mother Emily [35] born Drinkstone; sister Winifred Emily [2]. All except his father born in Ixworth.

1901 census...Aged 14, a farm labourer, he was at Moats Tye Road, Combs with his parents and sisters Emily and Elsie [7] born Ixworth.

1911 census...Aged 24, a grocer's porter, he was at Commister Lane, Ixworth with his parents.

On the pension card his mother was at Commister Lane, Ixworth.

He enlisted in Bury St.Edmunds . The Bury Free Press of 2nd September 1916 has Percy in the list of wounded. He clearly recovered quickly, to be in action on 28th September.
The 8th Suffolks were part of 53rd Brigade, 18th Division. On 28th September they were near Thiepval,l tasked with taking 1st Bulgar Trench 2 Schwaben Redoubt.
The action had started on 27th, very successfully. From the History of the Suffolk Regt by Lt Col - "At 1 p.m. on the 28th the attack was renewed; B and C Companies participated, the other two being left behind to hold Zollern Trench. The objectives were, 1st Bulgar Trench and 2nd part of the Schwaben Redoubt. The first was quickly carried, but then the fighting became very stubborn, and it was not until half past two that all the objectives had been gained and touch on both flanks established. The next evening the battalion went by bus to billets in Forceville. In these operations they captured some trench mortars, machine guns and automatic rifles; their casualties amounted to over 200, including the following officers: Killed: 2/Lts H Grimble, G S Long and S H Mason." The history also concludes that this action was the battalion's finest. CWGC records a total of the battalion being killed on 28th was 15.

Percy Gasking is commemorated on the Thiepval memorial, Somme pier/face 1C/2A

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