HERBERT ALFRED KEELL

Born: 1895, Ipswich.

Died: 9th October 1917; age: 22; KiA.

Evening Star – Monday, 12th November 1917 – Mr. and Mrs. Charles G. Keell, of 31, Berners Street, Ipswich, have now been informed by the War Office that their only surviving son, Second Lieutenant Herbert Alfred Keell, of the Essex Regiment, was wounded and missing after the action of the 9th October. He was formerly in the Suffolk Yeomanry, and served in Gallipoli and Egypt. Any information concerning him will be gratefully received.

Residence: 31, Berners Street, Ipswich.

Occupation: Electrical Engineer – Ransomes & Rapier Ltd., Ipswich.

Date of Entry Therein: 8th October 1915 – Balkans.

 

Herbert joined the Suffolk Yeomanry previous to the outbreak of war and served with that regiment in Gallipoli and Egypt, and was sent home to join an Officers’ Cadet Battalion.

Herbert was gazetted as Second Lieutenant to the Essex Regiment in June 1917.

 

Rank: Second Lieutenant.

Regiment: Essex Regiment, 3rd Battalion – attached to the 2nd Battalion.

Formerly 1558, Suffolk Yeomanry & 320067, Suffolk Regiment.

 

Medals Awarded: Victory, British War & 1915 Star.

 

Memorial Reference:

Panel 98 to 99.

Tyne Cot Memorial,

West-Vlaanderen,

Belgium.

 

Relatives Notified & Address: Only surviving son of Charles Goodwin Keell & Florence Harriett Keell, of 31, Berners Street, Ipswich.

 

CENSUS

 

1901   105, Fore Street, Ipswich.

 

Herbert was 5 years old and living with his parents & sister.

Charles Goodwin Keell, 36, a Rates Collector, born Greenwich, Kent.

Florence Harriett Keell (nee Snashall), 36, born Limehouse, Middlesex.

Phyllis Mary Keell, 11 months, born Ipswich.

1 general domestic servant.

 

1911   31, Berners Street, Ipswich.

 

Herbert was 15 years old, an Electrical Engineers Apprentice. He was living with his parents & sister.

Charles, 46, a Tax Collector.

Florence, 46.

Phyllis, 10.

1 boarder.

1 general domestic servant.

 

Charles and Florence Keell lost two sons in infancy – Gordon Charles Keell, born 26th December 1893, at 105, Fore Street, – died 10th July 1894 at home; and Leonard Sidney Keell born and died in 1897.

 

On the night of Friday, 20th November 1903, the Keell’s Red Irish Terrier dog named Con went missing from their home at 105, Fore Street. An advert under LOST was placed in the local newspapers and a reward was offered for the return of Con.

 

Herbert’s medals were sent to his mother, Florence Harriett Keell, of 31, Berners Street, Ipswich.

 

Soldiers’ Effects to Mrs. Florence Harriett Keell – mother.

 

Probate to Florence Harriett Keell – mother.

 

Herbert is also remembered on the Ransomes & Rapier Ltd. war memorial, Bourne Park, Ipswich, and at St. Matthews Church, Ipswich, and also Northgate High School. Formerly Ipswich Grammar School for Boys.

 

From the database “Soldiers died” 2/Lt Keell was listed as serving in the 3rd Essex, a service/training battalion based in the UK. After training recruits were drafted into active Essex battalions. To be buried at Tyne Cott, panel 98-99, it is possible that 2/Lt Kewell was serving with 1st Essex, part of 29th Division/5th Army (Gen Gough) taking part in the Battle of Poelcappelle (9 October 1917). The supporting attack to the north achieved a substantial advance. On the main front, the German defences withstood the limited amount of artillery fire. The ground along the main ridges had been severely damaged by artillery fire and rapidly deteriorated in the rains; the battle was a defensive success for the German army, although costly to both sides.

(information provided by Graham Jones)

IMG_6162

Essex Regiment, 2nd Battalion:

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