Remembering Worthing’s fallen – December 1914

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The Worthing men who died in December 1914 while serving their country in the First World War.

7404 Rifleman Alfred John Dell

King’s Royal Rifle Corps

Died December 3, 1914, aged 27

Alfred John Dell was born in Worthing in 1887. His father, Alfred George Dell, worked as a painter and school caretaker.

He was educated at the National School for Boys in Richmond Road.

Alfred had been working as a labourer when he enlisted into the King’s Royal Rifle Corps (KRRC), at Chichester, on September 12, 1906.

At that time he was 19 years and three months old. His height was given as 5ft 6ins and he had dark brown hair and eyes.

Alfred served part of his time in India, working as a groom, and was awarded two good conduct badges.

He was on the reserve list when the First World War was declared and he re-enlisted with his old regiment.

He deployed to the Western Front in August, 1914.

In all he served eight years and 84 days with the KRRC.

It was reported that he had been killed in action at Ypres on December 3, 1914, but records show that he died while in captivity at Kordewilde, Germany.

He has no known grave.

Early in 1914, he had married Sarah Jane Montague in Worthing.

A daughter, Mary Alexandra Dell, was born to them in August of that year.

Sadly, Alfred may never have seen his child.

Sarah lived at 70 Kingsland Road, Broadwater, Worthing.

He is remembered on the Menin Gate memorial, Broadwater Church memorial and commemorated on the family grave in Broadwater Cemetery.

He is also remembered on the Sussex Road School memorial (now the Sidney Walter Centre) that included the names of the boys killed who had attended the National School.

1200 Private John Bishop

Royal Sussex Regiment, 12th Battalion

Died December 5, 1914, aged 52

On December 10, 1914, the first military burial took place in Broadwater Cemetery.

The coffin of 52-year-old Private John Bishop was carried, draped with the Union Jack, on a gun carriage from his home at 11, The Drive, Worthing, to the cemetery.

It was then carried to the graveside by members of his regiment, where a bugler played The Last Post.

John, who was born at Thakeham in 1863, married Augusta Clara Warren in 1892.

He was a veteran of the South African War and had served in India and the Sudan before retiring from the army to run a greengrocers business with his wife, from their home at The Drive.

At the outbreak of the First World War, John signed up again for his country but at 52 he was considered too old for front line duty.

He was able, however, to put his military experience to good use when he was given the post of drill instructor with the 12th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment.

During the severe winter of 1914 John caught pneumonia and died on December 5, while stationed at Bexhill.

At his funeral a wreath was received from Lt Col Claude Lowther MP, with whom he had served in India and the Sudan.