Photograph with kind permission from the Uttoxeter Advertiser






Uttoxeter Advertiser



George and Louisa H. Martin.





George Martin




10c, 10g, 10l, 10z

G. J. Martin




10r, 10s

Mr. G. Martin



7d, 7h

4, 10d

Where born

Uttoxeter, Staffordshire




1a, 4, 10h

When born





1a, 9


Fole, Staffordshire (Parents)



7b, 7d, 7e


Fole Bank, Uttoxeter




10c, 10d, 10g, 10l, 10z

Parents: Gass House Road










10a, 10c







Employment Before Joining up

Varnisher and Painter




10a, 10h

Leighton Ironworks



7b, 7e


Messrs. Bamfords, Uttoxeter Staffordshire



7b, 7d

4, 10a

Where enlisted






Regiment & Unit at time of death

North Staffordshire (Prince of Wales’s)



7c, 7d, 7e, 7g, 7h

2, 3, 4, 10a, 10c 10g, 10h, 10m, 10n, 10p, 10r, 10s, 10w

6th Bn.




10a, 10f, 10h, 10l, 10m, 10p, 10w, 10y

(2098). 1st/6th Bn.





6th Territorials Bn





1/6th (T.F.) Bn





1st/6th Bn.





Former Service number, Regiment & Unit

2098, North Staffordshire Regiment




3, 10c, 10f, 10h, 10l, 10r, 10t, 10w, 10y






2098, “B” Company, North Staffordshire Regiment




2, 10u





7b, 7c, 7d, 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h

3, 4, 10c, 10e, 10g, 10l, 10m, 10n, 10p, 10s, 10t, 10w

Service Number at time of death





3, 4, 10a, 10c, 10h, 10l, 10m, 10n, 10p, 10r, 10s

Date of Death

1st July 1916



7d, 7f, 7g, 7h

2, 3, 4, 10y, 10z

Age at time of death






Where Killed or died






Gommecourt Wood



7g, 7h







How he died

Missing, presumed killed




3, 10e, 10v, 10y

Presumed to have died





Killed in Action



7f, 7g, 7h

2, 4

Location of Grave or Memorial

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing

Pier and Face 14B and 14C





Uttoxeter Town War Memorial






Victory Medal 7/104 B20 Page 2489 was awarded and then revoked




3, 10s, 10z

British Medal 7/104 B20 Page 2489




3, 10s, 10z

1914-1915 Star F/SB 3 Page 196




3, 10r, 10z

His parents lived at Fole and he was the youngest of 3 soldier sons7e. His father was an iron moulder.

The 1881 Census shows his parents as living in Gass House Road, Uttoxeter1a. Nelson had not been born yet, but he had a sister Ethel.

By 18911b the family had expanded to include two brothers (Francis Thomas and Herbert Edwin) and two additional sisters (Jessie and Nellie). It would be another 6 or seven years before Nelson would be born:

The 1901 Census1c is the first which contains Nelson. By this time the family consisted of the following:

·         Annie and George (parents) 1c,

·         Francis1c, 10c (Frank10z), George W, 1c, 10v Herbert and Nelson1c (sons)

·         Jessie1c, 10c, 10z, Lillie1c, 10c and Nellie1c, 10c (daughters


Before the war Nelson was employed at Messrs. Bamford’s10a Leighton Ironworks4, 7b, 7d, 7e as a varnisher and painter10a, 10h.

He was also a member of the Uttoxeter Parish Church Choir4, 7d, 7e.

He was a Uttoxeter Territorial4, 7a, 7b, 10p, having joined on 23rd January 191410a at Burton-on-Trent10b.

At the time of joining the Territorials he said that he was 17 years and 50 days old10a, 10h, but this is not consistent with the age that we deduce from the 1901 Census1c. It would appear that he lied about his age when he joined the Territorials10b.

He was just 5ft 7 ¾ inches tall10b, 10h and had a chest measurement of 33 inches10b, 10h and his vision and physical development were described as “Good” 10b, 10h. He still had several years of growing ahead of him at this stage.


A sample of his signature10w is shown opposite

Nelson left Uttoxeter with the Territorials in August 19144, 7a.Nelson’s obituary in the Uttoxeter Advertiser7d, 9 stated that he was just 16 years and 7 months7d, 9 at this time, which is consistent with the date of birth given in the 1901 Census1c,

On 10th or 20th of October 1914 he signed the agreement to subject himself to liability to serve in any place outside the United Kingdom in event of National emergency10fw.

He embarked at Southampton on 4th March 191510f.and disembarked at Le Havre on the 5th March 19153, 10f, 10z.

He was serving 2 years under-age when he took part in the charge at the Hohenzollern Redoubt in October 1915 during the battle of Loos7b, 7e. According to the Uttoxeter Advertiser7b, he was shot in the right breast7e, 10f and if it had not been for his cigarette-case, the wound that he received would probably have been fatal7e. Clearly his wounds were serious because on 16th October 1915 he was sent to number 24 Ambulance train10f. From there he was sent to number 3 Convalescence Depot on 29th October 191510e. He proceeded from there to a base in Rouen on 24th November 191510f and did not return to his Unit for duty in the Field until 2nd December 191510f.

His recovery had taken over a month.

The North Staffordshire Regiment’s Casualty list2, held in the Staffordshire Regiment Museum, confirms that he was wounded on 13th October 1915.

In January and February 1916 Nelson spent a lot of time travelling to-and fro from what looks like “Alexandria” in the records10e. The handwriting in this record is very difficult to read, however, so this needs to be checked and confirmed.

He embarked at Marseille on the 5th January 191610e.and disembarked on 12th January 1916.

He was stationed there for less than a month because he then embarked again on the 5th of February 191610e and disembarked again at Marseille on 11th February 191610e.

He then took part in the attack on the 1st day of the Somme in 1916 and was reported missing afterwards7c, 10e. Initially, his record shows that he was reported as wounded10f. Perhaps one of his compatriots had seen him fall on the battlefield?

His parents endured months of anxiety waiting for news of his whereabouts until, in April 1917, they were told that he had been killed on 1st July 1916. Official confirmation to his parents followed in May that he had died at Gommecourt Wood.

His records in the National Archives10e,show that he was officially recorded as “Died on or since 1.7.16” on 26th March 1917. They also show that he was struck off the strength of the Battalion from 5 September 191610y.

His total service in the Territorial Force was 2 years and 158 days10y. Of this 1 year 39 days was in Britain10z and 1 year 119 days was in France10z.

The North Staffordshire Regiment’s Casualty list2 shows him as being killed in action on 1st July 1916.

He was still a year underage for service abroad when he died CWGC.

On 5th June 1917 the authorities sent a letter to the Officer in Charge of the Territorial Force records at Lichfield stating that any of Nelson’s personal property now in this possession should be sent to Nelson’s father10g.

On 17th May 1922 Nelson’s father acknowledged receipt of his 1914-1915 Star10r, This followed on 28th December 1922 with a receipt for Nelson’s War Medal10s and VictoryMedal10s.


Nelson has no known grave and his name is recorded on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing


The very touching notice opposite was posted in the Uttoxeter Advertiser in July 19177f to mark the first anniversary of his death



This equally moving tribute was posted in the Uttoxeter Advertiser in July 19187g to mark the second anniversary



This followed in July 19197h to mark the third anniversary. The words are very evocative.