Private Walter Carrington Rooke

Date of Birth 5 May 1894
Age at Death 23
Date of Death 15 April 1918
Service Number 102644
Military Service 2/5 Battalion, Sherwood Foresters (Nott & Derby Regiment)
Merton Address 55, Prince George Avenue, Raynes Park
Local Memorial St. Saviour’s Church, Raynes Park

Additional Information

Walter Rooke Snr. was born in Basingstoke in 1867 was employed as a footman in Hanover square in London according to the 1881 Census. Walter married Edith Bailey on September the 19th at the parish Church in Middlesex. At the time of his marriage, he was employed as a porter.

Walter Carrington Rooke was the only surviving child of Walter and Edith Rooke and was known within the family as Carly. He was born on the 5th May 1894 in Wandsworth and baptized at St Faith’s Church on 1st July 1894. The baptism certificate reveals that the family resided at 23 Bramford Road in Wandsworth.

By 1900 Walter was attending Telferscot Road School in Lambeth. The 1901 Census states that the family still resided at 30 Emu Road in Wandsworth, with their 32 year old boarder. Walter was now employed as a ticket collector.

The 1911 Census reveals that the Rooke family were now living at 55 Prince George Avenue in Raynes Park. Sixteen year old Walter Carrington had begun employment as a clerk to a florist.

On 15 November 1915, Walter enlisted at the Duke of York’s Headquarters, Chelsea with the 1st County of London Yeomanry. His attestation papers records that his age was given as 21 years and 7 months, that he was 5ft 8 inches in height, and that his physical development was ‘Good’. Walter was stationed in England until he was transferred to the 5th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers on 12 December 1916, and his new battalion was posted to France on 14 December with the British Expeditionary Force. In June 1917, Walter was returned home to Evington Military Hospital for a month, after suffering a septic leg, and an injury to his right arm. He was then transferred to the Army Camp at Shoreham by Sea to recuperate, until 1 October 1917.

Walter was posted to France with the 17th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers, where they landed at Cherbourg on 23 March 1918. He had an option to train on tanks but chose not to and a few days later, on 30 March 1918, he was transferred to the 2/5th Battalion, Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment).

Sadly two weeks later on 15 April 1918, Walter was killed in action at Kemmel, Belgium. Walter’s father received the amount of 15 shillings owing from his pay, plus a War Gratuity of £11.00. In 1921, he also received his son’s Victory and British War Medals.

Walter is commemorated on the Ploegsteert Memorial, Belgium and locally at St Saviour’s Parish Church, Raynes Park, and on the Wimbledon Roll of Honour.

The PLOEGSTEERT MEMORIAL commemorates more than 11,000 servicemen of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in this sector during the First World War and have no known grave.


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