Charles Acland Keele

Date of birth: 1894
Place of birth: Southampton
Regiment: Rifle Brigade
Battalion: 12th
Rank / Service No: Captain
Died: 12th July 1916, aged 22 years
Buried: Poperinghe New Military Cemetery, Belgium (Plot II, Row E, Grave 5)


Charles was the only child of Charles Edward and Ella Emily Keele (nee Acland), who married in Steyning in 1892.


Charles Edward, a solicitor, was born in Southampton in 1855. After his wife’s premature death, he married Emily Hudson in Wandsworth in 1910.

He died on 15 November 1917 at Wellbeck Avenue in Southampton.


Ella was born in Clifton in 1860 and she passed away in Highfield in 1908.


Charles Jnr. had attended Eton before enrolling at King’s College, Cambridge in 1913.



He originally enlisted in the 4th Battalion Rifle Brigade, but transferred to the 12th Brigade prior to leaving the UK.

After initial training in the Winchester area, the battalion joined the 60th Brigade in the 20th (Light) Division and completed their training at Witley and Larkhill in early 1915.


The division proceeded to Boulogne on 22 July 1915, concentrating in the St. Omer area, where they undertook trench familiarisation training.


The divisions first big engagement was the Battle of Mont Sorrel (2-14 June 1916). It took place along a ridge between Hooge and Zwarteleen, just east of Ypres.

The area was held by the Canadians but was captured by the Germans, who entrenched on one slope.


Following a number of attacks and counterattacks, two divisions of Canadian Corps and the 20th (Light) Division recaptured the majority of their former positions.


Charles was probably badly injured during this action and was transferred to hospital at Poperinghe.


The new cemetery was established in June 1915and it contains 677 Commonwealth WW1 burials.


Charles’ headstone reads: “Floreat e tona: to win eternal life through death.”



Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 5th October 2016


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