G/29661 Private Arthur George Clark (or Clarke), Queen’s Own (Royal West Kent Regiment)
Born on 7th July 1899 in Dagnall
Died on 13th May 1972 in Liskeard, Cornwall
Arthur George Clark (or Clarke), known as George, was born in Dagnall, Buckinghamshire, the son of Charles Clarke and Annie Elizabeth née Heels. The spelling of their surname varied between Clark and Clarke.
George had 4 sisters: May, born 30th January 1898, Constance, born 4th March 1901, Dorothy, born 1st December 1903 and Elsie Violet, born 26th September 1905.
By March 1901, the family had moved from Dagnall to 22 Ringshall. George’s father was a Farm Cowman.
George Clarke, Infant, started at Little Gaddesden School on 28th April 1903, aged 3 years 9 months. However, this seemed to be too much for him, as the Log Book of 20th July 1903 recorded:
George Clarke of Ringshall (4 yrs old) has been away from School since last May. I have sent word to his mother & she tells me he will not be able to come again till he gets older. I shall remove his name from Registers.
It is not clear when George did start again at the school. On 14th September 1906, May, George and Constance Clarke left the neighbourhood. However, George definitely returned, as he is later recorded in Standard 5.
In the 1911 Census, the family’s address was Covetous Corner, St Margaret’s, Hemel Hempstead.
The Little Gaddesden School Log Book records that, on 7th July 1913, George Clark, Standard 5, left the school. It adds “he is 14 years of age.” He left school on his 14th Birthday.
Military Service 5
One of the youngest men named on the Roll of Honour, George was 18 on 7th July 1917. He would not have served overseas before April 1918, when an extension to the 1916 Military Service Act permitted overseas service for men aged 18½, rather than 19, as long as they had received at least 6 months’ training. His Medal Roll Index Card shows his service as a Private in the 10th Battalion, Queen’s Own (Royal West Kent Regiment) for which he was awarded the British War Medal and the Allied Victory Medal. His medals show that he did serve overseas.
Men who have answered their country’s call in defence of a “Scrap of Paper”
George Clark is named on the Roll of Honour, which hangs in St Peter & St Paul’s Church, Little Gaddesden and lists 119 men from Little Gaddesden, Ringshall and Hudnall who served in the 1914 – 1918 War. His entry reads Clark George, Queen’s Own Royal West Kent Regiment. He is similarly shown on the Centenary Revision of the Roll.
Rolls of Honour photos: Jane Dickson, Michael Carver
In the final Quarter of 1922 Arthur George Clarke married Daisy Beatrice Mills. The marriage was registered in the Newport Pagnall District. From 1923 to 1925 they lived at 6 Frithsden. Their daughter Ethel was born in 1923.
By 1930, George and Daisy lived at 16 Station Terrace, Great Linford, Bucks. Their son Alan was born on 24th June that year. By 1939 they had moved again, to 60 Bradwell Road, Stantonbury, Bucks, where George was employed as a Paviour.
George and Daisy later moved to Cornwall, where Daisy died in Liskeard District in 1960 (1st Quarter). George died, aged 71, on 13th May 1972 at which time his address was Harrowbridge Farm, Common Moor, Liskeard, Cornwall.
4. Little Gaddesden School Log Books 1887 – 1906 and 1906 – 1934
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Research, text and (unless otherwise credited) photos: Jane Dickson