James Dawkins

Date of birth:               1876
Place of birth:              St. Mary’s Southampton
Place of marriage:     Southampton
Service No:                   5593
Rank:                               Private
Regiment:                      Hampshire Regiment
Battalion:                       1st
Died:                                2nd November 1914 aged 38
Death location:           Belgium

Family life before the war
James Dawkins, born in 1876, was the husband of Francis Dawkins.  The 1911 census shows James and his wife Frances were living with their large family at 24 Howards Grove, Shirley, Southampton.  The family consisted of:

James aged 36 – working as a dock labourer.
Frances aged 38
Gerty aged 14
Clara aged 9
James aged 8
Fred aged 7
Violet aged 4
Florence aged 3
Hettie 4 months

Military service
James joined the army at the outbreak of the wa,r serving as a Private in the Hampshire Regiment.  He was amongst the first casualties being killed in action on 2nd November, 1914, aged 38, leaving Frances a widow with 7 children to support and care for.  He is remembered on the Ploegsteert Memorial (Panel 6) at Comines Warneton, Belgium.

The memorial is 12.5km south of Ieper and commemorates over 11,000 UK and South African forces who died in this section during WWI and have no known grave. Most died in day to day trench warfare or small scale engagements which were usually carried out to support the major attacks taking place elsewhere on the front.

The Last Post is sounded at the Memorial on the first Friday of each month at 7pm. The Memorial was designed by Harold Chalton Bradshaw and was unveiled on 7th June 1931 by the Duke of Brabant.

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