Francis Gerard Garland

Date of birth: 15th May 1890
Place of birth: Freemantle, Southampton
Regiment: Royal Garrison Artillery
Battalion: 154th Siege Battery
Rank / Service No: Serjeant, 352060
Died: 22nd March 1917, aged 26 years
Buried: Dickebusch New Military Cemetery, Belgium (AA.17)

 

Francis was the sixth of 10 siblings born to William Henry and Alice Sarah Garland (nee Crabb), who married in Shirley on 7 November 1880.

 

William was born in Shepton Mallet on 5 March 1859 and he died on 27 June 1930 in Newbury.

Alice was born in Charmouth in 1862 and she passed away in Freemantle in 1911.

 

The family lived at 4 Norman Road, Freemantle and all the children were born in Freemantle.

 

Siblings

Augustus William   b. 29 April 1881   d. 1956 Liverpool   Married Ada Susannah Cowthard in Portsmouth in 1908.

Beatrice Alice   b. 27 January 1883   d. 1958 Kingston   Married Arthur George Dymott in Shirley in 1909.

Charles Henry   b. 24 July 1884   d. 1957 Ashford, Kent   Married Edith Evelyn Edwards in Southampton in 1908.

Donald George   b. 5 April 1886   d. 1974 Southampton   Married Florence E. Sharp in Southampton in 1919.

Ernest Alfred   b. 12 March 1888   d. 1905 Freemantle

Francis Gerard

Gertrude Elizabeth   b. 28 November 1891   d. 1970 Brent

Hilda Mary   b. 28 March 1893   d. 1972 Canterbury   Married Alfred W. Katritzky in Southampton in 1922. Married Stanley Bowyer in Ashford, Kent in 1962.

Isabel Sarah   b. 16 March 1895   d. 1920 Southampton

Jessie Emily   b. 14 November 1896   d. 1983 Brent   Married Stanley S. Hurford in Southampton in 1947.

 

It is known that the 154th Siege Battery was formed from gunners from a Hampshire R.G.A Territorial Force, and that a large number of these men worked at Eastleigh railway depot.

 

The unit arrived in France on 30 August 1916 and spent all of its time around Ypres. At the time of Francis’ death, the unit was part of the 43rd Heavy Artillery Group.

 

A book was written by Captain Maurice C. Walker specifically about the 154th Battery….” A History of 154 Siege Battery R.G.A France 1916-19.”

 

The New Military Cemetery was begun in February 1915 and was used until May 1917 by fighting units and field ambulances, with a few further burials taking place in March and April 1918.

It contains 624 Commonwealth WW1 burials, and a Corporal from the same battalion was buried on the same day in an adjoining grave.

 

Francis’ headstone reads: “He gave his life for King & country & loved ones.”

 

 

Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 28th July 2016
Updated:

 

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