BAKER, Walter William

No.8874, Private, Walter BAKER
Aged 26

1st Battalion, Norfolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Monday, 4th September 1916

Walter William Baker was born in Beck Row (Mildenhall Q3-1890 4A:733), son of Smith and Emma Jane BAKER (née HENSBY).

1891 census...Aged 7 months, Walter W. Baker was at 29 High Street, Beck Row with his father Smith BAKER [27] farm labourer; his mother Emma J [26];sisters Ada H [3] and Estha G [2]. All were born in Mildenhall (Beck Row and Mildenhall were synonymous in most records).

1901 census...Aged 10, he was at Beck Row Street with his parents (father has as occupation F.B.Hind); sisters Ada, Esther E and Bessie M [7] and brother John E. [8] both born Mildenhall. Also there was his Aunt Bessie J.HENSBY [24] born Lakenheath.

1911 census...Aged 20, a labourer, he was at Holmsey Green, Beck Row with his parents (father now a shepherd), brother John (labourer) and sister Bessie.

The pension card has his mother at Holmesey Green,Beck Row, but after her death in 1919 his father moved to 6 Council House, Beck Row.

Walter enlisted in Bury St.Edmunds. He missed the award of the 1914 star by one day, not arriving in France until 23rd November 1914.
His Army records have not been found. The 1st Norfolks war diary is quite extensive on this action, one of the hard fought episodes for them on the Battle of the Somme. Their task, which they accomplished, was to take Falfemont Farm on the approach to Combles, with the French moving up the valley on their right. In the hard fought action on 4th September, losses were heavy but the Farm eventually fell early on the 5th. The 1st Norfolks (according to F.Loraine Petre OBE in his History of the Norfolk Regiment) lost 6 officers killed and 7 wounded, other ranks-50 killed, 212 wounded and missing, believed killed 94.

CWGC give a total of 1st Norfolks killed on the 4th as 106.

Walter Baker is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 1C/2D
and also on the memorial at Beck Row.

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