Information from research on Harrowdens (Northamptonshire) War Memorial

Information from research on Harrowdens (Northamptonshire) War Memorial

Percival Cramp was born in Little Harrowden in approximately 1884. He is commemorated on the Finedon and the Kettering War Memorials, but not on the Harrowdens War Memorial. At the time of Percy Cramp’s death, his father and sister lived in Finedon, and he lived with his own family at 83 Buccleuch Street in Kettering. Percy father’s was a locomotive driver. At the outbreak of the War Percy himself was working as a labourer in the Way and Works Department of the Midland Railway at Kettering and he is remembered in the Midland Railway Book of Remembrance. However, as a former regular soldier in the Dorset Regiment he was also a reservist. Notwithstanding that an ailment of some kind had sent Percy Cramp to a sanatorium before the War, he was recalled to the Army at the outbreak of war, and joined the 1st Battalion of the Dorset Regiment. He is described in a local press report as being severely wounded “early in the War”. It is clear that this must have occurred before February 1915. However, although described in another press report as “far from strong” he returned to the Front before being wounded again. After suffering that second wound he seems to have been returned to England and Wales, where he eventually died. When he was and was not with his Battalion is not clear. However, in the early part of the War the Battalion took part in the retreat from Mons and then the Battle of the Aisne. On 1 May 1915 the Battalion faced one of the early poison gas attacks of the War, near Ypres, and suffered approximately 200 casualties. Percy Cramp was eventually taken to the Red Cross Hospital at Penoyre near Brecon. There, on 24 November 1916, he died. The cause of death was stated to be tuberculosis and tubercular meningitis. His medal roll entry states that he died of wounds. Given the causes of death referred to in his death certificate, as compared to his known pre-War spell in a sanatorium, it is not at all clear whether he did indeed die of wounds (if so, presumably resulting from being gassed, probably on 1 May 1915) or whether he in fact succumbed to the tuberculosis which it appears likely that he contracted before he began his war service. Percy Cramp left a widow and children. His wife had been present when he died at Penoyre Hospital. She was also present, together with his sister and father-in-law, when he was buried in the small, quiet country churchyard at Battle, near to the hospital, where his gravestone marks the only grave in the cemetery maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Created by: Simon23771

  • Profile picture for Percival Cramp

    Born 1884

    Died 1916

    British Army 7024 Private Dorsetshire Regiment

    British Army 7024 Private Dorsetshire Regiment 1st Battalion