Blackmore Area Local History

First World War Commemoration:
Herbert James Brown

Died in the First World War.
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Herbert James Brown

War Memorial: Place and inscription
Commemorated on the Christ Church Lee memorial in the London Borough of Lewisham.  The memorial today is at the Local History and Archives Centre, Lewisham.
Church Window erected by family members inside St Laurence, Blackmore: Lt. H.J. Brown


Royal Welsh Fusiliers 1st / 7th Battalion [CWGC]

Service Details:
Medal cards: enrolled as Pte in 28th London Regt no. 3755, then Lt RWF.  K in A.
Roll Off 43 page 7d; IV X/3064 df 5-5-n NW/5/1920. Theatre first served in MEF
2/1/1916. [Ancestry]

De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour:
BROWN, HERBERT JAMES Lieut. 7th (Territorial) Batt., the Royal Welsh Fusiliers elder son of Ernest James Brown of 49 Lee Terrace Blackheath SE, builder, by his wife Hattie dau. of DA Messent: b. Lewisham co
Kent 14 Jan 1884; educ. Highbury House, St Leonards on Sea: was a brick manufacturer.  Joined the Old Boys Corps in September 1914, and the Artists Rifles in 1915; was gazetted 2nd lieut. in the Royal Fusiliers the following July; served with the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in Egypt and Palestine from December 1915 and was killed in action at Kulweilfeh 5 Nov 1917.  Buried on the battlefield, Palestine.  His Commanding Officer wrote "we all miss him very much and field has lost very greatly; we mourn a great friend".  He was m. at Blackmore county Essex 15 Jul 1911, Grace Eveline dau. of Roland Pratt, and had a dau. Peggy Eveline b. 21 Feb 1915.

By October 1917, General Allenby's force had been entrenched in front of a strong Turkish position along the Gaza-Beersheba road for some months, but they were now ready to launch an attack with
Beersheba as its first objective. On 31 October, the attack was carried out by the XXth Corps (10th, 53rd, 60th and 74th Divisions) on the west, and the Desert Mounted Corps on the east. That evening the 4th Australian Light Horse Brigade charged over the Turkish trenches into the town. The cemetery was made immediately on the fall of the town, remaining in use until July 1918, by which time 139 burials had been made It was greatly increased after the Armistice when burials were brought in from a number of scattered sites and small burial grounds. The cemetery now contains 1,241 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, 67 of them unidentified. [WO339 and WO374 at the National Archives]

Brown’s battalion, the 1/7th, was part of the 53rd [Welsh] Division.

Regimental Records of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, Vol IV by Cary and McCance.
This volume is concerned with operations on Gallipoli, in Mesopotamia, Palestine, Macedonia (Salonika) and Italy. There are a number of appendices which include: the Roll of Honour for the whole Regiment, taken from Soldiers Died and Officers Died; and a comprehensive index. All in all these four volumes make up a very fine regimental history.
[Regimental Records of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, by ADL Cary,
S McCance and CH Dudley Ward, four volumes, 1689-1918, reprinted Naval & Military Press 2007 Hardback]


Personal and family information:
Husband of Grace E. Petrie (formerly Brown), of St. Barnabas Vicarage,
Sunderland. Native of Essex. [CWGC]

Herbert James Brown was born in Lee in 1884 and married Grace Evelyn Pratt on
15th July 1911 at Blackmore.  Herbert Brown, then aged 27, was an Engineer from Blackheath.  His father was Ernest James Brown, a brick manufacturer.  Grace Pratt, aged 30, was a Blackmore resident.  They had one child Peggy, born 1915.

In the 1911 census we find Grace Evelyn Pratt living at Hay Green Farm, Blackmore.  Her father, Rowland Richard Pratt, describes his profession as ‘Gentleman’ [ERO D/P 266/1/12].  In 1911, the Pratt family comprised:
Rowland Richard Pratt. Head. Married. [Age] 62. [Occupation:] Independant [Independent]. [Born:] Narestork [Navestock], Essex

Clara Rebecca Pratt.  Wife.  Married 34 years. [Age] 55. [Occupation:] At home.  [Born:] Lakely [Takely], Essex

Rowland Clifford Pratt. Son. Single. [Age] 21. Working at home on farm. [Born:] Doddinghurst, Essex

Grace Evelyn Pratt. Daughter. Single. [Age] 29. Working at home on farm. [Born:] Narestork [Navestock], Essex


Rowland Pratt was a Churchwarden at the Parish Church in Blackmore in 1907 [HALS DSA 1/15/10 f502].  He was buried at Blackmore, 8 May 1913, aged 64. [Burial Register in Church Safe]

After Herbert’s death in 1917, Grace married Stanley Layton Petrie, the son of Walter Layton Petrie.

Date of Death:
6th November 1917


Where died:
Killed in action, Kulweilfeh, Palestine

Place of Burial or Commemoration:
War Cemetery
. [CWGC]

List of Sources:
Ancestry, Church Safe, Commonwealth War Graves Commission, De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour, Essex Record Office, Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies, National Archives, Regimental Records of the Royal Welch Fusiliers.

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Go to top Data produced by the Blackmore War Memorial Research Project Group: Bruno Giordan, Diana Abel, Andrew Smith.
Last Updated: 24 July 2010