Stanstead Abbotts

Local History Society

Alfred Ernest CLARK

Private 8993

7th Battalion Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regt)

Killed in Action 5th April 1918 aged 21

Born 1896, in Little Munden and in 1901 was living in the High Street, Stanstead Abbotts, with his parents Ernest and Mary with five brothers, one of whom is Frederick (see next page), and one sister.  In the 1911 census they were shown to be living at Sheffield House, High Street and his father was listed as a builder and ironmonger employer and also the undertaker, Alfred’s occupation is shown as a house boy.  Shortly after the family moved to 1, Railway Villas, St Margaret’s.

Alfred joined the Royal Fusiliers City of London Regiment, 7th Battalion (The Shiny Seventh) and was posted to France after training. His battalion had been made a part of the 190th Brigade, itself part of the 63rd Royal Naval Division, in July 1916. This Division had been formed in 1915 when it was realised that there was a surplus of Royal Naval reservists who would never serve on ships.  They were then formed in to two naval brigades and one marine brigade to serve on land.

In 1916 they took part in the Battle for Ancre as part of the Somme Campaign and then in 1917 the Arras offensive and 3rd Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele). In 1918 they fought in the 2nd Somme Campaign and then the Allied offensive against the Hindenburg Line.  Alfred was killed whilst taking part in the first Battle of Villiers Bretonneux, the final battle of the German Spring Offensive (Operation Michael).

He is commemorated on the Arras Memorial.

According to a record at the CWGC the six Clarke brothers all served during the war and four did not return but we can only find the records for Alfred and Frederick.

Medals Awarded: British War Medal, Victory Medal