THOMAS EDWARD STEVENS

Laid to rest at the Field of Honour.

 

Born: 1880, St. John’s, Lewes, East Sussex.

Died: 19th December 1920; age: 40; at Borough Asylum. Served 18 years & 244 days.

Residence: 72, Victoria Street, Ipswich.

Occupation: an Outfitter.

Enlistment Details: Location: Lewes; Date: 7th September 1900; age: 19 years & 11 months; Religion: CofE. Height: 5ft & 9 ins, fresh complexion, hazel eyes & brown hair. Scar right shin.

 

Service:

Joined at Woolwich – 7th September 1900.

Home: 7th September 1900 – 7th December 1903.

India: 8th December 1903 – 7th March 1906.

Home: 8th March 1906 – 15th August 1914.

B.E.F. – France: 16th August 1914 – 19th October 1914.

Home: 20th October 1914 – 8th May 1919.

Character – Exemplary.

 

Promoted Corporal: 26th January 1909.

Short Field Course of Gunnery, Shoeburyness (Fair) 28th February 1914.

Promoted Sergeant – 5th August 1914.

 

Rank: Sergeant; Service Number: 12203.

Regiment: Royal Horse Artillery, ‘L’ Battery.

 

Medals Awarded: 1914 Star. Long Service & Good Conduct Medal with Gratuity – September. Silver War Badge – issued 14th May 1919.

 

Grave Reference:

BA.IA.26A.

Ipswich Old Cemetery,

Ipswich.

 

Relatives Notified & Address: Son of Thomas & Elizabeth Stevens; husband of Kate Maria Stevens, of 72, Victoria Street, Ipswich.

 

CENSUS

 

1881   ‘Stag Inn’ 68, North Street, Lewes, East Sussex.

 

Thomas was 6 months old and living with his parents, maternal uncle & widowed, paternal great aunt.

Thomas Stevens, 25, an Innkeeper, born Lewes.

Elizabeth Ellen Stevens (nee Bailey), 23, born Lewes.

Edward Bailey, 21, a Butcher, born Lewes.

Sarah Kirby, 63. born Highgate, Middlesex.

1 visitor.

1 general domestic servant.

 

1891   8, Abinger Place, St. John’s, Lewes, Sussex.

 

Thomas was 10 years old and living with his parents & brothers.

Thomas, 35, a Printer’s Compositor.

Elizabeth, 34.

Victor Know Stevens, 9, born Lewes.

Arthur Clifford Stevens, 7, born Lewes.

 

1901   Royal Artillery Barracks, Green Hill Schools, Repository, Gun Park & Observatory, Woolwich.

 

Thomas was 20 years old, a Soldier ranked Gunner for the Royal Horse Artillery.

 

1911   Main Street, Newbridge Urban, County Kildare, Ireland.

 

Thomas was 31 years old, a Soldier ranked Corporal for the Royal Horse Artillery. He was married and living with his wife.

Kate, 31.

Both could read and write, Thomas was a protestant and Kate an Episcopalian.

 

On Christmas Day, 1906, at Burlington Chapel, Ipswich, Thomas married Kate Maria Offord, born 1874, Ipswich.

SUSSEX EXPRESS, SURREY STANDARD AND KENT MAIL NEWSPAPER
Friday November 6th 1914

BATTLE STORIES.

LEWES SERGEANT’S

EXPERIENCES

Two Lewes men have honoured of belonging to “L” Battery, Royal Horse Artillery, the Battery which covered itself with such glory at the Battle of Mons. Driver Jesse Garrett of De Montfort Road, who returned home wounded, has already related is experience columns and now we are able to give a few particulars concerning the part played by Sgt Thomas Edward Stevens, son of Mr and Mrs T Stevens Abinger-place, who has over 14 years’ service to his credit.

His battery left Aldershot the scene of operation Friday August 15th, spent the next day in the Channel, and landed at Boulogne the following morning. On the Tuesday they settled down for a two days train journey and then by the way of a change they had two days on the road going into bullets at night.

They were called into action the following Monday morning to quote Sergeant Stevens “got rather too hot for them” they were brought out of action after firing 200 rounds. A walk along the road to the place of safety enabled man and horse to be fed. While the artillery was resting, up came a motorcycle dispatch rider, and orders were received to proceed to a certain village and join up with the second cavalry Brigade, to cover the retirement of the 5th Division.

The artillery came into action undercover and fired between 400 and 500 rounds. The order to retire was subsequently given and the movement was carried out in sections. Owing to the excellent work of “L” Battery the Second Cavalry Brigade of the 5th Division was able to retire successfully and the officer in charge took the first opportunity of expressing his appreciation.

From then till 1st September our men were particularly fighting a daily rear guard action with very little rest but they had plenty to eat and were well looked after. On the 1st September they were surprised at daybreak and it was during the ensuing engagement but “L” Battery did so magnificently. For 10 days Sgt Stevens had been doing the work of the Q.M.S who was wounded, previous to “L” Battery coming into action. He had received orders to move off with the baggage wagons and joined up with the convoy.

The gallant stand by the artillery men is still fresh in our memories but the losses were heavy and it became necessary for “L” battery to return home to refit.

They embarked at a French port and arrived in Woolwich about 3 weeks ago Sergeant Stevens spent last weekend with his parents, and left Lewes on Monday. While at the base Sergeant Stevens met Gunner George Grayson Royal Horse Artillery of Lewes and a chat about the Old Town was much appreciated by both of them.

 

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