Edwin Dennis

Date of birth:             1898
Place of birth:           Swaythling, Southampton
Service No:                WR/291103
Rank:                            Sapper
Regiment:                   Royal Engineers
Battalion:                    Railway Operating Division
Date of death:           2nd August 1919 aged 21
Death location:         Egypt


Family life before the war
Edwin was the son of Arthur and Emily, who in 1911 were living at 1 Mansbridge Cottages, Swaythling, Southampton.  His parents were Arthur and Emily.  At the time of this Census Arthur was 13 and employed as an Ironmonger’s Labourer.

Edwin’s siblings and their ages in 1911 were:

Arthur aged 14.  Arthur died on 21st November 1916 whilst serving on HMHS Britannic.  Please select Arthur’s name to read his story.
Ada aged 12
Beatrice aged 10
Walter aged 8
Lily aged 6
Harriett aged 5
Jessie aged 1

Military Service
Edwin enlisted on 28th February 1916 as a Sapper in the Railway Operating Division of the Royal Engineers.  He was aged 18 and his peacetime occupation was given as Engine Cleaner.  He was accidentally killed on 2nd August 1919 as a result of a collision between 2 trains and is buried in Kantara War Memorial Cemetery in Egypt.  Grave reference F.1.35.

The cemetery is located at Kantara East on the eastern side of the Suez Canal, 50 km south of Port Said and 160 kms north-east of Cairo.

A Court of Enquiry into the accident which killed Edwin was held in Alexandria in November 1919 and their findings were passed to RE Records, Transportation Branch, Tavistock Square, London on 27th November, 1919.

In the early part of the First World War, Kantara was an important point in the defence of Suez against Turkish attacks and marked the starting point of the new railway east towards Sinai and Palestine, begun in January 1916.  Kantara developed into a major base and hospital centre and the cemetery was begun in February 1916 for burials from the various hospitals, continuing in use until late 1920.  After the Armistice the cemetery was more than doubled in size when graves were brought in from other cemeteries and desert battlefields, notably those at Rumani, Qatia, El Arish and Rafa.


Researcher: Jan Thorn
Published.: 15th May 2014
Updated: 29th January 2015

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