Frederick George Kirk Saunders

Place of Birth          Madras
Date of Birth           29th November 1893
Service Number     L/13730
Rank                            Sergeant
Regiment                  Royal Fusiliers
Battalion                   City of London Regiment
Died                             1st June 1915
Death Location       Gallipoli


Family Life Before The War
Frederick George Kirk was one of 2 siblings born to Frederick George and Charlotte Saunders (nee Kirk), who married in India on 4 November 1885.

Frederick George enlisted in the 1st Battalion Royal Fusiliers on 7 August 1880 at Hounslow. He was posted to India in November 1882.

In October 1887, Frederick George transferred to the Indian Army. He retired on 12 October 1911 with the rank of Honorary Captain.

Frederick George Kirk’s sister was Winifred Ethel Margaret Saunders, who was born on 29 October 1888 in Madras.

Unfortunately, Winifred did not celebrate her first birthday; she died in Madras on 15 August 1889.

Charlotte died in 1894 and Frederick George married Ann Amelia Mackay on 16 October 1895.

The couple had 3 further children….

George Mackay b. 14 September 1896 Madras d. 1965 Southampton

William John b. 15 November 1899 Mandalay, Burma

Dorothy May b. 24 October 1903 Secunderbad, India

The family returned to England after the 1911 Census to Southsea, before settling in Southampton.


Military Service
Frederick George Kirk enlisted in Hounslow as a Sergeant in the Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) 2nd Battalion, he was killed in action on 1st June 1915 at Gallipoli.

The level of rank made it possible for families to be with the serving soldier, as a certain amount of family accommodation was available.

The Allies landed on the peninsula on 25-26 April 1915; the 29th Division at Cape Helles in the south and the Australian and New Zealand Corps north of Gaba Tepe on the west coast, an area soon known as Anzac. The 8 month campaign in Gallipoli included Commonwealth and French Troops in an attempt to force Turkey out of the war to try and help the deadlock of the Western Front in France and Belgium and for Russia to have a supply route through the Dardanelles and the Black Sea.
The East India Company entered India around 1600 for trading activities. To secure trade to the area and the commercial interests in the spice trade the company began the construction of a harbour and fort. The fort was completed on St.Georges Day in 23d April 1644, hence the fort was named Fort St.George, it faced the sea and some fishing villages and was soon a hub of merchant activity, which gave birth to a new settlement area called George Town, which grew to encompass the villages and led to the formation of the City of Madras.
The fort is a stronghold with 6 metre high walls, it was restored to Great Britain and still houses a garrison of troops in transit to various locations in South India. Fredericks’ father served here in the Royal Artillery in 1874.


Memorial Information
Frederick is buried at Twelve Tree Copse Cemetery, Helles – grave reference C No 253.

Story amended 31.5.16 by MH; with thanks to Lindsey Saunders for updated information.

2 responses to “Frederick George Kirk Saunders

  1. Lindsey Saunders

    Frederick George Kirk Saunders was my great uncle. His parents were Frederick George Saunders and Charlotte Kirk who were married in India on 4 November 1885. However, Frederick George Kirk only had one full sister, Winifred Ethel Margaret Saunders. The information on the other two, Jane Charlotte and Florence Daisy are not of the same family. From the Ecclesiastical returns in India, when Jane Charlotte and Florence Daisy were baptised, their father was already deceased, therefore this information is incorrect.
    Charlotte Saunders, nee Kirk, died in 1894 and Frederick George Saunders remarried an Ann Amelia Mackay on 16 October 1895, where he had three more living children, Frederick George Kirk Saunders’ half siblings. Frederick George Kirk Saunders is also mentioned on the memorial on Highfield Church in Southampton, and also on his father and mother’s grave on The Common, Southampton. Frederick George Kirk Saunders is buried at Twelve Tree Copse Cemetery, Gallipoli.
    His half siblings were: George Mackay Saunders B. 14 September 1896 Madras; William John Saunders, B. 15 November 1899 Mandalay, Burma [ my grandfather]; Dorothy Maud Saunders B. 24 October 1903 Secunderabad, India.
    Frederick George Saunders’ army information is also incorrect, in that he enlisted on 7 August 1880 at Hounslow in the 1st Battalion, Royal Fusiliers, and was posted to India November 1882. He transferred into the Indian Army in October 1887 and retired 12 October 1911 with the rank of Hon. Captain. The family returned to England and settled first in Southsea and then in Southampton, where Frederick George Saunders returned to the active list on 26 June 1915 with the rank of Captain, Army Service Corps, Southampton, with Hon Rank as Major.

  2. Lindsey Saunders

    Should have read Dorothy May Saunders

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