Alfred Henry Orchard

Date of birth: 1885
Place of birth: Southampton
Service No.: 4625
Rank: Private
Regiment / Division: Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders
Battalion: 1st
Died: 31st October 1914 aged 29 years
Death location: Belgium

Life before the War
Alfred Henry, aka Harry, was born 1885 in Southampton and died 31st October 1914.  His parents were Ambrose Charles, aka Charles,  and Margaret.  Ambrose was baptised at West Knighton, Dorset on 26th July 1835.  He died in 1890 in Southampton.  Margaret, nee Byrne, was born 1853 in County Wicklow, Ireland.  She and Ambrose married in 1872 in Dublin South, Ireland.

Ambrose Charles and his wife Margaret tragically lost their four sons in the Great War.

Alfred’s siblings were:

Charles – baptised at St. Peter’s Church, Portland, Dorsetshire on 21st January 1877; died 14th September 1914 (war casualty).

Andrew Thomas, aka Thomas – born 21st October 1877 and baptised on 6th November 1878 at St. Peter’s Church, Dorset; died 1st June 1916 (war casualty).

Daisy May – born 26th May 1880 and baptised 13th October 1880 at St. Peter’s Church, Dorset; married William Thomas McAllen 1903.

Wilfred Lawson – baptised 3rd September 1882 at Melcombe Regis; died 29th September 1918.

Mabel – born 1887 Southampton.

The family lived at The Grove, Portland in 1881.  Nearby was the village of Easton, notable for containing a Youth Offenders Institute, where Ambrose was employed as a Warder Convict Services.  At the time of Wilfred’s baptism in 1882 Charles was a Licensed Victualler.

By 1891 Margaret was widowed.  She moved to Southampton with the family and was a Lodging House Keeper at 19 Simmel Street, St. Michaels District.  Charles and Thomas were employed as Messengers.

Margaret married James Macey 1891 in Southampton.  Margaret with her husband and their daughter Victoria Maud Macey, born 1895, were living at 32 Dukes Road, Portswood, Southampton in 1901.  James was a Dock Labourer.

The Orchard children had left home by 1901 – Andrew was serving aboard HMS Electra as a Leading Stoker, Daisy was employed as a Housemaid in Bournemouth whilst Charles was living in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire working as a Domestic Gardener.

In 1911 Charles and Wilfred were serving in India.  Wilfred served with the 2nd Cameron Highlanders as Lance Corporal (Bandsman).  Victoria Maud Macey was a housemaid living at 12 Brunswick Place, Southampton.  Andrew lived in Petersfield where he worked for the General Post Office as a Skilled Labourer in the Engineering Department.

Brother Charles’ War Service
Charles served with the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders as a Private. He served in the Western European Theatre and was killed in action on 14th September 1914.

Brother Andrew’s War Service
“Orchard, Sto. 1st Cl. Thomas, 284567 (RFR/PO/B/2990). R.N. H.M.S. “Tipperary”. Killed in action at Battle of Jutland 1st June, 1916. Age 38. Son of Charles and Margaret Orchard”.

Brother Wilfred’s War Service – Mikra British Cemetery
“Orchard, Pte. Wilfred Lawson, 4128. 2nd Bn. Cameron Highlanders. 29th Sept., 1918. Age 36. Brother of Mrs. McAllen, of 247, Manor Farm Rd., Bitterne Park, Southampton” .

Select the brothers names to read their stories.

Harry’s War Service

Name: Alfred Henry Orchard
Birth Place: Southampton, Hants
Residence: Southampton
Death date: 31st October 1914
Death location: France & Flanders
Rank: Private
Regiment: Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders
Battalion: 1st
Number: 4625
Type of Casualty: Died
Theatre of War: Western European

Harry is Remembered with Honour on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium.  He is also remembered on the Southampton Cenotaph and Memorial Wall.

For his service to his country Harry was entitled to the 1914 Star, the General Service and Victory Medals.  He was also entitled to his Clasps.

Historical Information – Menin Gate
The Last Post is played at the Menin Gate Memorial.  This tribute to the Fallen was started in 1927 and has been played almost every night since, except for a period in the Second World War when Ypres was occupied by German Forces.  

Buglers of the local volunteer Fire Brigade arrive at 7.55 p.m. and stand ready at the eastern entrance of the Menin Gate Memorial.  The Buglers then step into the roadway under the memorial arch and make their way to stand in the centre of the Hall of Memory.  The Buglers stand in a line across the eastern entrance facing towards the town.

At exactly 8pm (20:00 hours – 8 o’clock) Call to Attention by the Buglers.  They sound the Last Post bugle call.  This is followed by a minute’s silence.  If this is not an extended ceremony the Buglers will then play Réveille.  The Buglers will march off and the ceremony is ended.  If it is an extended service Members of the Last Post Association will guide visiting individuals and groups who are laying wreaths.

Researcher: Becky Lonergan
Published.: 1st December 2013
Updated: Insert dates here

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