Arthur James Kelly

Date of birth: 1897
Place of birth: Southampton
Regiment: Hampshire
Battalion: 1st
Rank / Service No: Private, 25840
Died: 29th August 1918, aged 21 years
Commemorated: Vis-en-Artois Memorial, France


Arthur was the third of 6 siblings born to John Alexander and Jessie Kelly (nee Munday), who married in Weymouth on 26 December 1891.

The family moved to Southampton sometime between 1894 and 1897, living latterly at 57 Belvidere Terrace in Northam.


Jessie was born in Weymouth in 1872, and she was only 38 years old when she passed away in Southampton in 1910.

John was born in Axminster on 15 November 1868. After Jessie’s death, he married Emily Darling in Southampton in 1914.


It is known that John was living in St. Mary’s Street in 1939, and that he shared his home with one of his son’s and his wife.


John died in St. Mary’s in 1944.



William Edwin   b. 1892 Weymouth   d. 1907 Southampton

Joseph Alexander   b. 3 July 1893 Weymouth   d. 1963 Kensington   Married Beatrice M. Sibley in Southampton in 1926.

Arthur James

Dorothy May   b. 1898 Southampton   d. 1981 Walsall

Lottie Jessie   b. 26 January 1900 Southampton   d. 1969 Southampton   Married Allan Laird in Southampton in 1922. Couple living at 23 Lupin Road in 1939.

John (Bertie) Bertram   b. 22 July 1903 Southampton   d. 1983 Southampton   Married Ivy M. Cross in Southampton in 1927. Living at 6 Holland Road, Southampton in 1939.



The 1st Hampshires were part of the 11th Brigade in the 4th Division when they disembarked at Le Havre on 23 August 1914.

The Division was called straight into battle, at Le Cateau, at the tail-end of the Battle of Mons.


It fought in all the major battles through 1915 – 1917 and was mainly engaged in northern France during 1918.


On 28 August, the 4th Division was moved to Boiry Notre Dame in support to the Canadians, who had made significant gains.


On 29 August, the 1st Hampshires were in support of the Somerset Light Infantry during an attack on the Sensee. During this action, the 1st Hampshires lost 30 men, before being pulled back to the village of Boiry.


It can be assumed that Arthur was one those 30 men who perished during the attack.


The Memorial bears the names of the over 9,000 men who fell between 8 August 1918 and the Armistice in the Advance to Victory in Picardy and Artois, between the Somme and Loos, and who have no known grave.


Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 6th October 2016


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