Our Armistice Stories
As 2018 marked 100 years since the end of the First World War, AES choose to commemorate the centenary of the First World War by inviting our staff to share their families’ stories…
“My Great Grandfather, Private E. Daubney of Wiltshire Regiment lied about his date of birth in order to become a solider in 1916 (as he was not yet 17). His mother wrote to the India War Office applying for him to be sent home. In the meantime, Private E. Daubney was shot in battle during the Mesopotamia Campaign (British and Indian troops fought against the Ottoman Turks in Mesopotamia (now Iraq) between 1914 and 1918), he survived and was sent to a hospital in India. He later died in his 80’s in Sidmouth, Devon.” Alex Brooks, Director
“John James Tarrant was conscripted into the army before being killed in the “Battle of the Menin Road Ridge” in the Third Battle of Ypres in 1917. He left a widow and two children John (my Great Grandad) and Albert who were both under the age of 5.” Yasmin Spain, BREEAM Consultant
“My grandfather, Maurice Hopkins, fought in France in 1916, he was born in 1900. As he was small, being only 16, he was often posted in a forward advancing trench and from his position would feedback information on enemy movements. From his post he reported a large caterpillared vehicle identified later as an early tank.
He was also the first member of his battalion to be mustard gassed and although he lived into his 80’s, he attributed this to the fact the never grew any body hair including never having to shave! He was captured and served time in in a prisoner of war camp, during a failed escape he was shot in the leg and was returned to the camp where he resided to the end of the war. During that time he gave his great-coat to another prisoner of war planning an escape and as a reward was given an ebony cane with a silver top by an officer. My uncle still has this. To the day he died he claimed a bullet was still lodged in his knee.
He told none of his stories of gallantry until he was on his death bed and chastised anyone who did as glorifying war. Only a very few members of my family know his full service record and I believe he will rest in peace knowing the details will die with them.” Fraser Hall, DALTEC Director
I would like to take this opportunity to thank those members of staff who shared their story and their precious pictures.