Private John Ferrar

Date of Birth c. 1884
Age at Death 32
Date of Death 23 June 1916
Service Number 14095
Military Service 13th Battalion East Surrey regiment
Merton Address 42 Wandle Road, Morden
Local Memorial St. Mary's Church, Merton Park

Additional Information

John was born in London’s Kentish Town c. 1884. He was the eldest child of Stone sawyer, Edward Ferrar and his wife Rebecca. During the 1890s the family were living in Prittlewell, Essex, however by 1901 they had moved to 27 Himley Road, Tooting Graveney. John now had two younger sisters, Kathleen and Mary. The baby of the family was his brother, Philip aged 3. Now aged 17, John was already following in his father’s footsteps and working as a stone sawyer.

In 1905 John’s mother died, aged 45. His father and younger siblings then moved to 42 Wandle Road, Merton. Philip was still at school but John’s sisters were now helping to support the family by working as ironers, possibly in one of the local laundries. John seems to have moved elsewhere by this stage. He was living at 43a Steerforth Street, Earlsfield when war broke out and working as an excavator (possibly for the construction industry.) He volunteered for the East Surrey Regiment, 13th Battalion (Wandsworth ) in September of that year.

Formed in June 1915, the 13th Battalion was based in Witley, Surrey by October. John may also have spent some time training at Aldershot. His unit would have been transferred to Blackdown, West Sussex in February 1916 before departing for the Western Front. His battalion formed part of the 120th brigade, 40th Division which landed at Le Havre on 4 June 1916 and was sent to the Somme region . Sadly John’s active service lasted less than three weeks. He was wounded and died on 23 June 1916.

He is buried in the Vermelles British Cemetery in the Pas De Calais region of France and commemorated at St.Mary the Virgin Church, Merton Park. At the time of John’s death, his family were living at 4 Reform Place, Abbey Road, Merton.


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