Born: 12th May 1878, Ipswich.

Died: 2nd October 1918; age 40; KiA alongside four other comrades whilst acting as a stretcher bearer.

Enlistment Location: Ipswich.

Date of Entry Therein: 14th February 1915 – France.


Rank: Corporal; Service Number: 473267

Regiment: Royal Army Medical Corps, 88th Field Ambulance.


Medals Awarded: Victory, British War & 1915 Star.


Laid to rest with 4 of his comrades in a British Cemetery well behind the lines. Funeral conducted by the R.A.M.C.’s padre.

CHARLES EDGAR ROLFE, Private, 473125, R.A.M.C., 88th Field Ambulance, aged 22, of Ipswich, formerly of Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk.

ROBERT HENRY WATSON, Private, 475351, R.A.M.C., 88th Field Ambulance, aged 33, of Newnham Croft, Cambridgeshire.

ERNEST ROBERT GILL, Private, 475147, R.A.M.C., 88th Field Ambulance, aged 26, of Heigham, Norfolk.

Photograph courtsey of Liz – niece.

(Jock) HENRY JAMES FORD, Private, 6849, R.A.M.C., 88th Field Ambulance, aged 20, of Aldershot, Hampshire – born Devonport, Devonshire, son of Henry James Ford, a Warrant Officer Sergeant Major, R.A.M.C., and Ann Hall Ford (nee Hume), of Myrtle Villa, Redan Hill, Aldershot, Hampshire.


Grave Reference:


Brandhoek New Military Cemetery No. 3.




Relatives Notified & Address: Son of J. Hardwicke of Ipswich.




1881   1, Newton Street, Ipswich.


William was 2 years old and living with his maternal grandparents & uncles.

William Hardwicke, 50, a Maltster’s Labourer, born Ashbocking, Suffolk.

Mary Ann Hardwicke, 50, born Ipswich.

Arthur Hardwicke, 23, a Compositor, born Ashbocking.

Ernest Hardwicke, 17, a Machinist, born Hemmingstone, Suffolk.

Walter Hardwicke, 8, born Ipswich.


1891   1, Newton Street, Ipswich.


William was 12 years old and living with his grandparents & uncle.

William, 60, a Maltsters.

Mary Ann, 60.

Walter, 18, a Printer & Compositor.


1901   55, Samuel Road, Ipswich.


William was 22 years old, a House Painter. He was living with his grandparents at the home of his uncle & aunt + cousin.

Walter, 28, a Printer’s Compositor.

Elizabeth M. Hardwicke, 30, born Whitton, Suffolk.

Dorothy M. Hardwicke, 3, born Ipswich.

William, 70.

Mary Ann, 70.

2 of Elizabeth’s brothers were also staying.


1911   100, Handford Road, Ipswich.


William was 32 years old, a Storekeeper – Iron Works. He was married and Head of the Household.

Alice, 30, a Corset Machinist – Factory.

Doreen, 7.

Eric, 5.

Ernest, 3.


William’s mother was Julia Hardwicke, born Febraury 1857, Ashbocking, Suffolk. On all the census through William’s childhood she is a Servant at Hove, East Sussex.


In 1901, Ipswich, William married Alice Maud Rosier, born 1880, Stowmarket, Suffolk – died 1919, Ipswich. They had 5 children:

Doreen Evelyn Bertha Hardwicke, born 1904, Ipswich.

Eric Jack Hardwicke, born October 1905, Ipswich.

Ernest Reginald Hardwicke, born 1907, Ipswich.

Harold Leslie Hardwicke, born 17th August 1911, Ipswich – died during the Second World War in Taiwan as a Japanese PoW, on the 12th April 1945, aged 33. Leslie was ranked a Lance Corporal, service number 5835277, of the Cambridgeshire Regiment, 2nd Battalion. He was laid to rest at the Sai Wan War Cemetery, Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong.

Ivan Frank Hardwicke, born May 1915, Ipswich.


Photographs courtesy of Sonya and William’s grandson.

William is also remembered on the Ransomes & Rapier Ltd. war memorial, Bourne Park, Ipswich, St. Matthews church memorial.

IMG_3892 (2)

Family Note from Sharon:

Ernest was my grandfather and he was in the sanitarium with typhoid as a child and by the time he came out both his mother and father had died and he and his siblings were cared for by their grandmother(who had 2d in her purse when she died).


The Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) is part of the British Army providing medical services to all British Army personnel and their families in war and in peace. Together with the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, the Royal Army Dental Corps and Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps, the RAMC forms the British Army’s essential Army Medical Services. In combat the men followed the troops over the top into no man’s land suffering losses of 743 officers and 6130 soldiers killed, while delivering medical care to wounded exposed to enemy fire.


Royal Army Medical Corps, 88th Field Ambulance:




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