Project Description

BERTIE BAKEWELL 1886–1959

RGA

Also known as Herbert on military records

Born 7th April 1886 in Radcliffe on Trent

Baptised 2nd May 1886 at St Mary’s Church, Radcliffe on Trent (baptismal name Berty)

Married in 1919 to Dorothy Cash, Nottingham

Children: Dorothy M. born 1919, Robert W. born 1921, Ernest R. born 1922, Alfred C. born 1924, Iris A. born 1926

Died 1959 Radcliffe on Trent

1891 Census

The Bakewell family were living at 1 Station Terrace. William (father) a platelayer, mother Lizzie (née Spencer) and children, William 12, Lucy 10, Ernest 8, Bertie 5, Gertrude 2.

Radcliffe on Trent School Register

Admitted to Radcliffe school 11.4.1889

1901 Census

Family was living on Station Terrace, Radcliffe on Trent. William (father) railway platelayer, brothers Ernest born 1883, railway labourer, Bertie, farm labourer.

1911 Census

Family was still living in a four room house on Station Terrace. One of their seven children had died. Bertie was away from home serving with the army in India.

Military Service

Rank: Sergeant (by 1918)

Service Number: 25839

Military Unit: 52 Company, Royal Garrison Artillery, Bombay, India

Theatre of War: served in India so did not enter a theatre of war

Attestation: 19.11.1906 in Nottingham. Name given as Herbert Bakewell. Age twenty. Occupation: gardener. Height 5 ft 10ins, weight 140 lbs, chest 36ins, blue eyes, light brown hair.

Next of kin: father William, mother Sarah of 1 Station Terrace, Radcliffe on Trent.

A character reference was supplied by Reverend J. Cullen (vicar of Radcliffe) stating that he has known Bertie all his life as a parishioner and that he was sober, honest and respectable.

19.11.06: 5 Depot, Royal Garrison Artillery, Gunner

21.2.07: Posted Gunner 44 Company, Royal Garrison Artillery

4.5.07: Re-measured at Pembroke Dock: Ht 5ft 10½ ins, wt 146 lbs, chest 37ins

7.1.08: Posted 52 Coy, RGA

8.1.08: Posted to India

31.3.08: Passed swimming instruction

27.4.08: Certificate of education, 3rd Class

16.6.09: Depression Range Finder, Rangoon

24.7.12: While playing football in Bombay for an RGA team against a Royal Warwicks Regiment team, he broke his right leg colliding with the goalkeeper and was taken to Station Hospital, Coloba. Fracture of tibia and fibula.

27.11.12: Passed 2nd Class Signaller instruction

15.10.13: Passed 1st Class Signaller instruction

2.3.14: Passed 1st Class Gunner instruction

4.3.14: 52 Coy

Extended Service to complete 12 years, initially Signaller, then Gunner.

Period of Army service expires 18.11.14 (9 years).

Character Exemplary

13.8.16: Promoted Bombardier

18.10.16: Requalified 1st Class Gunner

26.12.16: Promoted Corporal

10.4.18: Promoted Sergeant

9.10.18: Posted Expeditionary Force, France

Employment sheet 1915-1918:

28.2.15: Duty Signaller:  An intelligent, willing, steady and reliable man

Canteen(?) Assistant:  Quite trustworthy

1.3.16: Duty Signaller:  Intelligent, hard working and trustworthy

9.10.18: Duty Signaller:  An intelligent, steady and reliable NCO. Sober and trustworthy

18.11.18: Posted Unit 5/4 SARB,( Siege Artillery Reserve Brigade), Aldershot

17.1.19: To Dispersal centre

19.1.19: Demobilized (from Clipstone Camp)

Bertie Bakewell spent the war in India – see response to letter below from his uncle, T. Spencer. Although posted to France in October 1918, the war would have been over by the time he arrived there from India. The fact that he did not receive a Victory medal is evidence that he did not serve in a theatre of war.

‘Dear Staff

Could you kindly inform me where the 52nd Coy of the Royal Garrison Artillery is now stationed? I have a nephew in the company L Cpl Bert Bakewell and I last heard from him from Oyster Bay Fort Bombay. My reasons for troubling you is that my sister, his mother, is anxious about him …

Both her lads were in the Royal Garrison Artillery. One was drowned going out to China some time ago so she takes it very much to heart. If I can do anything for your kindness in fishing out this information I shall be most happy to do so.

Yours sincerely, T. Spencer, RAM Corps, Connaught Hospital, Aldershot’

A note written across the letter states: ‘Informed still in 52 Coy, Bombay 18.5.15’

Total Military Service: 12 years. Character described as ‘exemplary’ on military record: ‘an intelligent, steady and reliable soldier and trustworthy’.

Medals Awarded: British War

Military Personnel Address on 1918 Electoral Register:

Station Terrace, Radcliffe on Trent

Other information

Brother Ernest was also a regular soldier. Bertie gives Ernest as one of his next of kin on his military record (no date) which states he was serving in the Royal Garrison Artillery. Military Unit was in South Africa for Boer War then transferred to China to assist in putting down the Boxer Rebellion. Ernest was drowned in the course of the journey.

From the 1922 Electoral Register

Address: Shelford Road, Radcliffe on Trent

Head of household: Bert Bakewell

Other information

Bert Bakewell was one of 66 staff dismissed from Notts County Asylum in April 1922 following a strike by nurses, male attendants and kitchen staff. The strike was called by the National Union of Asylum Workers after the hospital committee demanded that the staff accepted an increase in hours from sixty to sixty six per week to be achieved by them forfeiting one day’s leave per fortnight. Staff were told that failure to accept this agreement to work longer hours would result in instant dismissal.

From the 1939 Register

Address: No 2 Council Houses, Bingham Road, Radcliffe on Trent

Occupation: skilled labourer at Gas Works

Household: living with wife, Dorothy and sons Robert, working in munitions, and Ernest, apprentice saddler.

Reasons for inclusion on Radcliffe on Trent Roll of Honour

Born and lived in Radcliffe on Trent.