Ernest was born in Winchester and he was the second eldest of the five sons of Ernest and Annie Blake. In 1911 the family were living at 81 Kingsley Road in Shirley, Southampton. Ernest was 18 years old and working as a carman.
He joined the Rifle Brigade in September 1914 and landed at St Nazaire in France with the 3rd Battalion on 12th September 1914. Ernest is buried at La Brique Military Cemetery which was a small hamlet to the north of Ieper (Ypres) in Belgium.
Three of Ernest and Annie’s children were killed in action during the war. Ernest died on 20th June 1915 aged 22 years. He died about 3 weeks before his younger brother Albert who was fighting with the 2nd Battalion Rifle Brigade in France. Their younger brother Percival died two years later in October 1917.