BENJAMIN CHRISTOPHER BLOOMFIELD

Laid to rest at the Field of Honour.

Not on the war memorial at Christchurch Park

Born: 1869, Mary le Tower, Ipswich.

Died: 25th November 1916; age 46; Died at The Sanatorium, Woodbridge, Suffolk. Served 12 years & 353 days.

Occupation: Builder’s Labourer.

Enlistment Details: Location: Aldershot; Date: 25th March 1889; age: 18 years & 7 months; Occupation: tailor; Religion: CofE. Next of Kin: Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield, of 95, Leopard Buildings, Tower Terrace, Ipswich. Height: 5ft & 4 3/4ins, dark complexion, blue eyes & dark brown hair.

 

Service:

Home: 21st March 1889 – 21st October 1899.

South Africa: 22nd October 1899 – 7th March 1902.

Home: 8th March 1902 – 8th March 1902.

 

Enlistment Details: Date: 18th December 1902; Age: 32 years & 3 months; Occupation: Tailor. Height: 5ft 5 3/4ins. Next of Kin: Mother – Mrs. B. Bloomfield, of 115, Crown Street, Ipswich. Scar forehead, tattooed – cross, flags & anchor on the right forearm. Royal Garrison Regiment – 6491.

 

Service:

Home: 18th December 1902 – 21st August 1903.

Malta: 22nd August 1903 – 20th April 1904.

South Africa: 21st April 1901 – 10th November 1904.

Home: 11th November 1904 – 17th December 1904.

Sent home from South Africa on account of an abscess in his spine which twice caused loss of power.

Discharged: 17th December 1904 – served 2 years.

 

Enlistment Details into the 56th Field Ambulance: Location: Ipswich; Date: 21st October 1914; age: 44 years & 7 months; Occupation: Builder’s Labourer. Next of Kin: Brother – Australia.

 

Service: Home: 21st October 1914 – 24th July 1915. Trained in First Aid Duties.

B.E.F. 25th July 1915 – 5th October 1915.

Home: 6th October 1915 – 28th October 1915.

Prior to enlistment was in good health, earning full wages as a Labourer. Origin September 1915 – Corbie, France. Admitted to hospital – 3 weeks, then transferred to England and admitted into Henham Hospital, Essex.

Discharged: 28th October 1915 – Aldershot – No longer fit for war service. Character – Good. Served 1 year & 8 days.

 

Medals Awarded: South Africa with Clasps, Relief of Kimberley, Paardeberg, Drufontein, Johannesburg, Diamond Hill & Belfast.

Mentioned in Despatched London Gazette – 10th September 1901.

 

Rank: Private; Service Number: 45535.

Regiment: Royal Army Medical Corps, 56th Field Ambulance.

 

Grave Reference:

BA.I.48.

Ipswich Old Cemetery,

Ipswich.

 

CENSUS

 

1871   11, Potter’s Street, Ipswich.

 

Benjamin was 2 years old and living with his parents, brother and widowed maternal grandmother.

Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield, 25, a Shipwright Caulker Boat Builder, born Ipswich.

Hester Hannah Bloomfield (nee Nunn), 20, born Harwich, Essex.

William Henry Bloomfield, 4 months, born Ipswich.

Hester Hannah Bloomfield, 63, born Harwich, Essex.

 

1881   The Essex Industrial School & House for Destitute Boys, Rainsford Road, Chelmsford, Essex.

 

Benjamin was 12 years old and an Inmate.

 

1891   St. Margaret, Station Hospital, Fort Pitt, Rochester, Kent.

 

Benjamin was 20 years old, a Soldier, ranked Private and an Attendant for the Medical Staff Corps.

 

1911   In Tents, Spa Corner, Retford, Nottinghamshire.

 

Benjamin was 42 years old, a Circus Groom for the Sanger Circus.

 

Benjamin is also remembered on the Holy Trinity Church Memorial.

 

East Anglian Daily Times – Friday, 26th October 1877 – SCHOOL BOARD PROSECUTIONS – Benjamin Bloomfield, of Rose Lane, Ipswich was before the Mayor Walton Turner, Esq., S. B. Chapman, Esq., Dr. Chevallier, and Vice-Admiral Mason, C.B., on Thursday, 25th October 1877 at the Ipswich Police Court, for neglecting to send his son Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield to school. He was ordered to send him in the future.

Ipswich Journal – Tuesday, 1st June 1880 – SENT TO A REFORMATORY SCHOOLAt the Town Hall, Ipswich, on Monday, 31st May 1880, before the Mayor David Henry Booth, George Green Sampson and Edward Grimwade, Esqrs., and Admiral Thomas Henry Mason, C.B., Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield, the lad who was last Monday was charged with stealing an iron scraper and other articles, was again brought up. The defendant appears to have been prowling about the back premises of houses abutting upon the new sewer near Bird’s Gardens and taking everything, he could lay his hands upon. He also seems to be quite out of the control of his parents, for from time to time he has been brought before the Bench on charges of theft. The Magistrates ordered the defendant to be confined in a reformatory for five years.

Ipswich Journal – Tuesday, 15th January 1884 – MAINTENANCE ORDER – At the Town Hall, Ipswich, on Monday, 14th January 1884, before the Mayor John May, Esq., George Green Sampson, Esq.,  and Edward Grimwade, Esq., Admiral Thomas Henry Mason, C.B., and Joah Hunt, Esq., Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield, a shipwright, of no fixed residence, was summoned to show cause why he should not contribute towards the maintenance of his son Benjamin, detained in a reformatory school. It appeared that the boy had previously been in an industrial school and that his parents paid 1s. 6d. a week towards his maintenance, but he escaped and committed a robbery in Essex, for which he was convicted and ordered to be detained in the Essex Reformatory School. The Magistrates adjudged the defendant to pay 1s. 6d. a week, the order being practically a transfer.

Evening Star – Tuesday, 28th February 1905 – THEFT AT BRANTHAM – At Samford Petty Sessions, on Tuesday, 28th February, before Captain Morse, Captain Edgar, A. C. Churchman, Esq., and J. O. Fison, Esq., Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield, a labourer, of no fixed address was charged with stealing a shovel, valued at 2s. 3d., the property of Mr. Henry Rose, a builder, of Mistley, Essex.

The evidence showed that the prisoner took the shovel from a shed at Branthem on the 21st February. He was tracked by Police-constable Grey along the road to Ipswich and admitted the theft. Benjamin said he had done no work for seven weeks, and didn’t know how to live. The letters “H.R.” which had been on the shovel had been erased by Benjamin, and his own initials substituted.

Prisoner, who had seen 12 years’ service in the Army, previously had a good character. The Bench sentenced him to seven days’ imprisonment, with Hard Labour.

 

Evening Star – Saturday, 2nd December 1916 – MILITARY FUNERAL AT IPSWICHOn Friday afternoon the funeral took place at Ipswich Cemetery of Mr. Benjamin Christopher Bloomfield. The deceased, who fought through the South African campaign, rejoined on the outbreak of the present crisis. During the time spent in France he had the misfortune to be gassed and was eventually discharged as medically unfit. He was an inmate of the Ipswich Sanatorium and passed away on the 25th November. Full military honours were accorded, the body being conveyed to the Cemetery on a gun carriage and team of six black horses. The buglers, bearers and firing party were supplied by the Worcestershire Yeomanry. The interment took place in the Field of Honour. The service was conducted by the Reverend W. H. Williamson, vicar of Holy Trinity. At the conclusion, three volleys were fired, and five buglers sounded the “Last Post.” The coffin, of polished elm, with brass fittings, bore the following inscription: – “Benjamin C. Bloomfield, died November 25th 1916, aged 48 years.” Messrs. Hastings and Son, of Berners Street, Ipswich carried out the funeral arrangements.

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