WALTER BENSLEY

Born: 1881, Stowmarket, Suffolk.

Died: 26th April 1915; age 34; KiA.

Residence: Barclay Street, Ipswich.

Occupation: as a Fitter at Orwell Works, Ransomes Sims & Jefferies, Ipswich

Date of Entry Therein: 8th November 1914.

 

Walter had served in the 1st Volunteers and 4th Suffolks since January 1896.

 

Rank: Private; Service Number: 114.

Regiment: Suffolk Regiment, 4th Battalion.

 

Medals Awarded: Victory, British War & 1914 Star + the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal.

 

Memorial Reference:

Panel 21.

Ypres(Menin Gate) Memorial,

West-Vlaanderen,

Belgium.

 

Walter was killed at the same time as:

George William Buckles, a Private, 2106, of the 4th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. George was 28 years of age, of Crown Street, Leiston, Suffolk and employed as a storekeeper. George was born in Wickham Market the son of Thomas Buckles and Eliza Buckles (nee Clowes), of Union Cottages, Chapel Lane, Wickham Market, Suffolk.

Charles Herbert Teager, a Private, 2249, of the 4th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. Charles was 37 years of age, of Handford Road, Ipswich and employed as a bricklayer. Charles was married with five children.

 

CENSUS

 

1881   Ipswich Road, Stowmarket, Suffolk.

 

Walter was a year old and living with his mother at the home of his maternal grandparents & uncle.

Peter Tuck Bensley, 60, a Maltster’s Labourer, born Suffolk .

Mary Ann Bensley (nee Crickmer), 59, born Badingham, Suffolk.

James Crickmer Bensley, 28, a Maltster’s Labourer, born Halesworth, Suffolk.

Ellen Mary Ann Bensley, 21, born Halesworth.

 

1891   8, Potter Street, Ipswich.

 

Walter was 10 years old and living with his mother at the home of his maternal, widowed, grandmother & uncle.

Mary Ann, 54.

James, 34, a General Labourer.

Ellen, 29.

1911   27, Upper Barclay Street, Ipswich.

Walter was 30 years old, a Foundry Fitter. He was living with his uncle.

James, 50, a Machinist – Furniture Manufacturer.

 

Soldiers’ Effects to Ellen Bear – mother.

Walter is also remembered on The Orwell Works Memorial Ransomes Sims & Jefferies, Ipswich.

 

The 4th Battalion

24th April 1915 the Battalion as part of the Lahore Division, were ordered to move northwards towards Ypres. They arrived at Boeschepe, marching 18 miles, arriving in the dark. They passed the 2nd Battalion the following day, and the 4th Suffolks marched in heavy rain to Ouderdom.

By the 26th they arrived on the outskirts of Ypres which was being heavily shelled. The Battalion moved to the south of the city. The Brigade spread out on the Zonnebeke road up to Potijze on the junction to St. Jean. It was noted that the Germans were firing 42cm guns onto the city, which was now in total devastation, seeing shell holes 72ft wide. The sound of the shelling was great and was described as flying express trains “Wipers Express”

At 14:00hrs The Lahore Division advanced on the German line from the road. The 4th Suffolks were in support of the 47th Sikhs, the moment they moved forward crossing the road Major Frederick William Turner was hit along with a number of his men. Minutes later the Germans released poison gas which drifted onto the Allied lines causing the advance to falter. The advance was pushed back and the order was given to dig in as the Germans began to shell their positions. During the early hours of the following day, the Battalion was withdrawn and moved back to positions at Potijze.

 

THE SUFFOLK REGIMENT 1/4th Battalion:

Suffolk Regiment Battalion movements

Friends of The Suffolk Regiment

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