On 6th May 1915, a fundraiser was held in Broadway at the Symonds’ Picturehouse to raise money for the Worcestershire Regiment. Half of the money raised was used to buy cigarettes to send to the Worcester Regiment in France.
Wounded in Action: Private 14959 Reginald Duncan Folkes, Worcestershire Regiment
Amongst the audience was Private Reginald Folkes who was on sick leave after being wounded in the Battle of Neuve Chappelle. Private Folkes was one of the first men of Broadway to join up to fight following the outbreak of the First World War arriving in France in 1915 with the 3rd Battalion Worcester Regiment. After being wounded in March 1915, and a period of convalescence at home in Broadway, Reginald returned to active duty with the 4th Battalion Worcester Regiment by the end of May 1915. Describing the Battle of Neuve Chappelle, Private Folkes said:
When they had reached the German trenches, they found, to their chagrin, that all the barbed wire was still intact, our artillery not having touched their front just there. That was the time that the men fell fast, but the Worcesters were not done with.
At the end of the war Reginald Folkes returned to Broadway. He married Alice Taylor in Stroud in 1920 and died,aged 64,in 1956.
Other Broadway Men Serving with the Worcesters
Other Broadway men fighting with the Worcesters included Privates Gordon Russell, Leonard F. Green1, Edgar Turner, Arthur Berry. Another Broadway man, Private Malcolm John Denton<sup2, had also been wounded having been shot through the jaw. He was an old reservist having served with the Royal Berkshire Regiment before enlisting with the 8th Battalion Worcester Regiment after the outbreak of the WW1.
1. Private Leonard Frank Green, Corporal 240841, 1/8th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment (1896-1917). Len enlisted in September 1914 and was killed in action at during the Battle of Passchedaele and is commemorated on Tyne Cot Memorial and the Broadway War Memorial.
2. Private Malcolm John Denton was born c1879 in Drayton, Berkshire. He married Rosina Collins in Broadway in 1902.