1886 - 1915
FREDERICK EVE was born in May 1886 and baptised in the Parish Church, Great Waltham on the 6th June 1886. He was the eighth child and fourth son of Walter and Alice Eve (née Emberson) who were married on the 25th February 1876 in the village church.
Walter was a Labourer and the family lived at Peach Cottage, Broads Green.
In 1901, Frederick was employed as an Ordinary Agricultural Labourer.
On the 14th July 1905 in London, when he was 19 years and 3 months old and a Grocer’s Assistant in Chelmsford, he enlisted for Short Service in the Rifle Brigade and given Regimental No. 963. He was 5ft 4¼” tall, weighed 115 lbs and had brown eyes and dark brown hair. He also had a scar on his left wrist.
He arrived at the Rifle Brigade Barracks, Winchester on the 18th July 1905 for training.
His first posting was on the 10th February 1906 on a Troopship HT Dunera to Malta, arriving on the 19th February. He was stationed there until the 22nd January 1909, when he left for Egypt aboard HT Braemar Castle. He arrived in Alexandria on the 29th January to serve at Khartoum. On the 31st January 1913 he sailed home to Tipperary in Ireland. In Cork, he was transferred to the Army Reserve on the 13th July 1914, having served 9 years, but at some point, rejoined the Rifles to fight with the British Expeditionary Force which left in September 1914 for France.
At the beginning of April 1915, the 1st Battalion of the Rifle Brigade were in Nieppe, for a bath and change of underwear and fumigating of their clothing, then onto Plogsteert. There they carried out repairs and work on the secondary defences. The Regiment were relieved on the 15th April by the 5th Battalion Worcesters. They marched back to their billets at Steenwerck. They remained in their billets carrying out training and battalion sports and inter-platoon football. They left Plogsteert on the 24th April and proceeded to huts in Vlamertinghe. On the 25th they marched via the stone bridge just north of Ypres to St Jean to take over from the 2nd Canada Brigade which they couldn’t locate.
Death and Memorial
As there was no definite news on the 26th April they marched on to Fortuin where they met up with the Canadians. They saw some trenches occupied by British troops and tried to send out platoons to reach them. They were heavily shelled which continued into the night. That day there were 103 casualties in the Brigade and Frederick may well have been one of them.
He died aged 30 years old on the 26th April 1915.
His body was never recovered and he is ‘Remembered with Honour’ on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial. Panel 46-48 & 50.
Frederick is also remembered on the War Memorial in Great Waltham.
UK ARMY REGISTER OF SOLDIERS’ EFFECTS 1901-1929
Frederick’s mother Alice, received £13.12s.10d on the 17th January 1916 with a further Gratuity payent of £5 on the 18th July 1919. She was also sent from the War Office in London, items of Frederick’s personal property, namely a small pocket book containing the Gospel of St John, letters and 8 halfpenny stamps.
Frederick was awarded the British War Medal, Victory Medal and the 1914 Star (in May 1919) these were sent to his mother on the 10th January 1921.
Alice signed a receipt adding ‘with thanks’.
Frederick’s youngest brother, Percy was also killed exactly one year later at Ypres, serving with the 11th Battalion, Essex Regiment, aged 21 years.