image from 1917 Chronicle newspaper
Born: 1888, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.
Died: 11th October 1917; age 29; Died – Cottonera Military Hospital.
Residence: 17, Loepold Road, Ipswich.
Employed: as a Milkman for Messrs. Joseph Hunt, Ipswich.
Enlistment Location: Ipswich.
Date of Entry Therein: 12th May 1915 – France.
Rank: Private; Service Number: 50017
Regiment: Machine Gun Corps (Infantry), 84th Coy.
Formerly 17469, Suffolk Regiment.
Medals Awarded: Victory, British War & 1914-1915 Star.
1891 13, Hill Street, Ipswich.
Bertie was 2 years old and living with his parents & siblings.
Arthur Spurgeon, 32, a Shoe Maker, born Ipswich.
Agnes Spurgeon (nee Lipscomb), 31, born Hevingham, Suffolk.
Beatrice Agnes Spurgeon, 12, born Ipswich.
Henry Arthur Spurgeon, 11, born Ipswich.
Arthur George Spurgeon, 10, born Ipswich.
Gertrude Mildred Spurgeon, 4, born Ipswich.
1901 Jubilee Cottage, Holland Road, Ipswich.
Bertie was 12 years old and living with his parents & siblings.
Arthur, 42, a Shoe & Bootmaker – own account – at home.
Beatrice, 22, a Tailoress.
Henry, 21, a Factory – Engine Driver.
Arthur, 19, a Bus Conductor.
Gertie, 14, a Tailoress.
Janet Ethel Spurgeon, 9, born Ipswich.
Stanley Charles Spurgeon, 5, born Ipswich.
1911 38, Holland Road, Ipswich.
Bertie was 21 years old, a Milk Carrier. He was living with his parents & siblings.
Arthur, 53, a Bootmaker – own account – at home.
Agnes, 51, a Monthly Nurse.
Beatrice, 31, a Tailoress.
Gertrude, 23, a Tailoress.
Stanley, 15, a Baker.
In 1912, Ipswich, Bertie married Rose Page, born 1886, born Bentley, Suffolk. They had 2 children:
Bertram Thomas Spurgeon, born May 1913, Ipswich.
Edith May Spurgeon, born January 1915, Ipswich.
The Machine Gun Corps was formed in October 1915 as the machine gun proved to be held affective as infantry support in trench warfare. Cavalry and Motor branches, followed in 1916 by the Heavy Branch. A depot and training centre was established at Belton Park in Grantham Lincolnshire also a training base depot at Camiers in France .the men were trained to a higher technical standard, capable of stripping down and mending the guns in the field.
The Machine Gun Corps had 62,049 casualties, including 12,498 killed out of 170,500 officers and men earning it the nickname ’the Suicide Club’ manly as machine guns were static or fix positions becoming prime targets for the enemy.