Photographs courtesy of Susan and Charles’s Niece, Shirley.

Born: 1889, Swilland, Suffolk.Charles Robert Thorpe

Died: 28th April 1917; age 28; KiA.

Occupation: Grocer – Mr. Joseph Cooper Squirrell, a Grocer, of 17, Upper Brook Street, Ipswich.

Enlistment Location: Ipswich.


Rank: Private; Service Number: 30844

Regiment: Suffolk Regiment, 7th Battalion.


Medals Awarded: Victory & British War. 


Memorial Reference:IMG_6758

Bay 4.

Arras Memorial,

Pas de Calais,





1891   13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.


Charles and his brother on the cart (quite possibly John who was known as Jack in the family)

Charles was a year old and living with his parents & maternal aunt.

Walter Thorpe, 25, a Carter – Foundry, born Swilland, Suffolk.

Eliza Emma Thorpe (nee Vince), 28, born Burstall, Suffolk.                                                 

Emma Vince, 13, born Burstall.

1 visitor.


1901   13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.


Charles was 11 years old and living with his parents & brothers.charles-thorpe-2

Walter, 36, a Coal Carter.

Eliza, 38.

John Thorpe, 8, born 13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.

Frederick Walter Thorpe, 3, born 13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.


1911   13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.


Charles was 21 years old, a Grocer’s Assistant. He was living with his parents & siblings.

Walter, 46, a Coal Carter.

Eliza, 48.

John, 18, a Groom.

Frederick, 13, an Errand Boy – Coachbuilders.

Kate Thorpe, 8, born 13, Kemp Street, Ipswich.


The original photographs belong to Charles’s niece, Shirley who was kind enough to share these images for this Memorial project.

On the 1st August 1915, St. Mary’s Church, Flowton, Suffolk, Charles married, Jessie Ellen Steward, born November 1890, Flowton, Suffolk – daughter of Alfred Steward, a milk retailer – own account, and Ellen Steward (nee Ford), of Flowton. 


Soldiers’ Effects to Jessie E. Thorpe – widow.


On the 13th April 1920, 30 year old, Jessie Thorpe, a widow, who could read and write, arrived at the Port of New York. She had departed from the Port of Southampton on the 13th March 1920, and sailed aboard the S.S.‘New York’ of the American Line. She intended New York to be her future permanent residence. Jessie’s father, Mr. Alfred Steward, of Flowton, Suffolk was her Next of Kin.

On the 20th March 1921, 32 year old, Jessie Thorpe, arrived at the Port of Southampton. She had sailed 2nd Class aboard the S.S.’Imperator’ of the Cunard Steamship Company Ltd. From New York. She intended Emgland to be her future permanent residence.

IMG_7986-005 (2)

Picture from Chronical newspaper 1918 of Charles, John & Frederick Thorpe who both survived the war.


The above are the photographs of the three sons of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Thorpe, of 153, Princess Street, Ipswich. The first is Pte. Charles Robert Thorpe, of the Suffolk Regiment, was killed on April 28th, 1917, in fighting near Arras. He was formerly with Mr. J.C. Squirrell, grocer, Brook Street. No. 2 is A.B. Jack Thorpe, of the R.N.D., formerly in the Suffolk Regiment. He has served 12 months in France and has been gassed twice and wounded once. Before the war, he was with the Ipswich Co-operative Society. The third is Sapper Frederick Walter Thorpe, Royal Engineers, who is still in France and has served 18 months.


Suffolk Regiment, 7th Battalion

Battle of Arleux (28–29 April 1917)

An 8 mile front from British and Canadian troops of the 12th Division, making the main thrust between Scarp and Monchy, France. At 04:45hrs The Battalion went over the top, passing through the 5th Royal Berkshire Regiment who had just captured “Bayonet Trench” and a section of “Riffle Trench

They immediately came under a most devastating machine gun fire from Roeux of the north side of the river, not yet taken and suffered very heavy losses. A number of men managed to reach their first objective, but were unable to move any further forward.

All the officers were killed or wounded except two. The survivors made their way back to the line under the cover of darkness, by 01:00hrs of the 29th, the battalion had been reduced to 190 men. (from 350.)

The 11th Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment as part of the 101st Brigade, formed an attack on Roeux chemical works on the Northern edge of the town, just south of the railway line. At 4:27 on the 28th of April 1917 the attack by the 11th began, troops pushed forward but came under heavy machinegun fire which drove the men back. A small group pushed on into the quarry on the eastern edge of the chemical works, being unsupported. At nightfall, they returned with 3 prisoners. The opening barrage had failed to destroy the machinegun posts and the enemy trenches, causing the attack to fail. The emery counter-attacked from Roeux. they were taking Mount Pleasant wood, part of the Ceylon trench at 9:45 a.m. The Battalion took over 300 casualties. 

Suffolk Regiment Battalion movements

Friends of The Suffolk Regiment


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