Remembered Today: Lance Corporal 17261 Dennis William Diston, 10th Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment

Dennis William Diston, born in Stanton, Gloucestershire, in 1887 was the only son of Charles Diston from Cutsdean, Worcestershire, and Julia Ann Diston. The family moved to nearby Snowshill where Dennis found work as a jobbing gardener after leaving school. Dennis’s mother died in 1891, a year after his younger sister, Mabel, was born and his father remarried Phebe Hannah Bateman in October the following year. Dennis had three older sisters; Mary Ann (1878-1953), Elizabeth (1880-1883) and Dora Lavinia (1885-1915).

On 6th July 1912, Dennis married Mabel Elizabeth Grove in Broadway and they moved to Broadway where their two children (a son and a daughter) were born. Shortly after the outbreak of the First World War, Dennis enlisted with the 10th (Service) Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment and he was posted to the Western Front on 9th August 1915.

The following year Dennis was initially posted as missing in action and was later confirmed as killed in action, aged 29, on 22nd July 1916. Dennis is buried in Pozieres British Cemetery, Ovillers La-Boiselle, and is commemorated on the Snowshill War Memorial, Prestbury War Memorial and inside St Mary’s Church, Prestbury. His epitaph on his headstone reads: IN THAT SWEET BYE AND BYE WE SHALL MEET ON THAT BEAUTIFUL SHORE.

Pozieres British Cemetery (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Pozieres British Cemetery (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

As a resident of Broadway at the time of his death, Dennis was considered by the Broadway War Memorial Committee for inclusion on the war memorial built on the village green in 1919. The Committee, however, decided against including his name and Dennis was later commemorated on the Snowshill War Memorial, a stone cross, designed by Frederick Landseer Griggs, located in St Barnabas churchyard in the centre of the village.

Further information about the men from Broadway who died in the First World War can be found in Broadway Remembers (ISBN 978-0-1-9929891-0-1) a not-for-profit publication raising money for the Poppy Appeal published to coincide with the global First World War Centenary commemorations led by the Imperial War Museum.

 

Debbie Williamson
Broadway Remembers

 

 

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Remembered Today: Company Serjeant Major 13794 John S. Dale, 8th Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment

Remembered today CSM John Stanley Dale, aged 32, of the 8th Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment who was killed in action on 4th May 1918, with Captain Ernest Cowper Slade whilst going on his round of the lines. John had served with the army prior to the war and had re-enlisted in September 1914. He was buried shortly after his death alongside Capt Slade near to where they fell at Hallebast, south west of Dickebusch. They were both re-enterred in Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery, near Ypres, Belgium, in 1919.

John was born at 54 Gill Street, Limehouse, London, on 29th January 1886 and later lived in Broadway and Snowshill, Gloucestershire. On 18th November 1912 he married Caroline Harriet Winifred Burston (1882-1968). At the time of his death his wife and two children were living on Gravel Walk, Tewkesbury.

Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery, Belgium (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery, Belgium (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

 

 

Debbie Williamson
Broadway Remembers

 

 

Remembered Today: Two cousins Pte 15372 Albert H. Clarke, 11th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and Pte 29206 George T. Handy 9th (Service) Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment

Albert Henry Clarke, was born in Broadway in 1893, the third son of Albert and Emma Mary Clarke. After leaving school, Albert worked for Thomas Bayliss, grocer, corn and offal dealer of Sheldon House, Broadway. Shortly after the outbreak of the First World War, Albert enlisted with Kitchener’s Army in Broadway in September 1914 and joined the Worcestershire Regiment. After a period of training on Salisbury Plain, Albert was posted to Gallipoli in June 1915. During his time in Gallipoli, Albert was injured by a kick from a horse and was transported back to England where he recuperated in a hospital in Stockport, Cheshire.

Albert later rejoined his regiment and in August 1916 was posted to the 11th (Service) Battalion in Salonika. The following year, during the night of 24th/25th April 1917, the Battle of Doiran, Albert, who had just turned 24, was killed in action. He is commemorated on the Doiran Memorial, Greece, and the Broadway War Memorial.

Two of Albert’s cousins also fought in Salonika. His cousin George Thomas Handy, known as Thomas, was born in Broadway in 1880. After leaving school Thomas was apprenticed as a baker and after his marriage to Clara Porter in 1901, moved to Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, where he set up his own bakery and was greenkeeper at Moreton-in-Marsh Golf Club. Thomas enlisted with the 9th (Service) Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment and was also killed during the night of 24th April 1917 when he was hit by a shell. Thomas is buried in Karasouli Military Cemetery, Polykastro, and he is commemorated on the Moreton-in-Marsh War Memorial as ‘Thomas G. Handy’.

Cousin Wilson William Keyte was born in Broadway in 1885. Wilson enlisted with the Worcestershire Regiment and served with Albert with the 11th (Service) Battalion in Salonika. Wilson was awarded the Military Medal for stretcher-bearing duties during the Battle of Doiran and after the end of the war was awarded the Greek Military Cross. Wilson died, aged 64, in 1949.

 

Doiran Memorial, Greece (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Doiran Memorial, Greece (Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

 

Albert is one of 48 commemorated on the Broadway War Memorial. Further information about Albert, his cousins and fellow men from Broadway commemorated on the memorial can be found in ‘Broadway Remembers’ (a not-for-profit publication published to coincide with the global First World War Centenary commemorations led by the Imperial War Museum. Proceeds to the Poppy Appeal).

 

 

Debbie Williamson
Broadway Remembers

© Debbie Williamson and Broadway Remembers, 2014. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Debbie Williamson and Broadway Remembers with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.