Images courtesy of Miss Maureen Howard

Born: 1886, Ipswich.

Died: 15th July 1916; age 30; KiA.

Residence: 7, Albert Cottages, Rope Walk, Ipswich.

Employed: for ten years at the Great Eastern Railway Locomotive Works.

Enlistment Location: Ipswich.


Rank: Private; Service Number: 3609

Regiment: Suffolk Regiment, 4th Battalion.


Medals Awarded: Victory & British War.


Memorial Reference:

Pier & Face 1C & 2A.

Thiepval Memorial,



Image from the Suffolk Chronicle And Mercury newspaper – 1916.


Relatives Notified & Address: Husband of Rebecca Maud Howard, of 7, Albert Cottages, Rope Walk, Ipswich.




1891   88, Rope Walk, Ipswich.

James was 5 years old and living with his parents & siblings.

James Howard, 48, a Fish Hawker – own account, born Ipswich.

Lucy Howard (nee French), 37, born Ipswich.

Emma French Howard, 11, born Ipswich.

Edgar French Howard, 10, born Ipswich.

Agnes French Howard, 7, born Ipswich.

Ellen French Howard, 3, born Ipswich.

Walter French Howard, 11 months, born Ipswich.


1901   62, Rope Walk, Ipswich.

James was 15 years old, a Stud Maker – Iron Workers. He was living with his mother & siblings.

Lucy, 46, a Tailoress.

Emma, 21, a Corset Budder.

Edgar, 20, an Iron Turner.

Aggie, 18, a Corset Cord Folder.

Ellen, 13, a Stationer’s Eyeletter.

Rose French Howard, 7, born Ipswich.


1911   34, Station Street, Ipswich.

James was 25 years old, a General Labourer – G.E.R. He was married.

Rebecca, 26.


In 1901 & 1911, James’s father James Howard was boarding away from the family home, a Fish Hawker.


In 1910, Ipswich, James married, Rebecca Maud Mexome, born June 1884, Ipswich – daughter of William Mexome, a blacksmith’s striker for Great Eastern Railways, and Sarah Mexome (nee Woodgate), of 19, Station Street, Ipswich.

Rebecca and James had four children:

William James Howard, born October 1911 – died 1918, Ipswich.

Ellen Maud Howard, born December 1913, Ipswich.

Frederick Arthur Howard, born April 1915, Ipswich – died 1919, Ipswich.

Kathleen M. Howard, born 1916, Ipswich – died 1916, Ipswich.


Soldiers’ Effects to Rebecca M. Howard – widow.

James is also remembered on the war memorial at St. Michael’s Church, Ipswich.

The Somme Offensive Day 15

The battle of the Bazentin Ridge and the attack on High Wood.

The 4th Battalion the Suffolks 15th July 1916 regimental records:

While the 4th Battalion was moving through Becordel to the position between Fricourt and Mametz where they bivouacked during the night of July 14th-15th, the battle of the Bazentin Ridge was raging in all its fury. They were not destined, however, to remain long thus upon the fringe of the hostilities, and at dawn went out under the command of Major H. C. Copeman D.S.O to support the 1st Middlesex Regiment in an attack on Switch trench. After severe fighting, a line immediately in front of the Village of Bazentin-le-Petit was taken up and held for the remainder of the day. The casualties in the battalion exceeded two hundred.

This is the highest death rate of the war for Ipswich. 17 men.

Suffolk Regiment, 4th Battalion:

Suffolk Regiment Battalion movements


Friends of The Suffolk Regiment



  • Oh my word. I am reading through memoirs of my Great grandfathers oldest brother, William Spinks. I was struggling to read a place name, one that I now know to be Bazentin-le-Petit, and started to research the area to find it when i came across this profile of James French Howard. Perhaps they knew each other. I got goosebumps when i read the name Major H.C.Copeman, one mentioned by my 2nd great uncle.

  • Hi so I am James French Howard’s Great Great Niece, ive been been looking through as much information as possible and see you have also been doing the same , my Uncle was killed during the battle at the Bazentin Ridge aged 30 , ive found his name on a memorial at Thiepval, just incredibly moving


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