For King and Country

Person Details

GRAY, Arthur Stanley

Memorials

Name: Cookham School Lane, Cookham
NIWM Ref: 7925
RBWM Ref: WM151

Person Details

Place of birth: Maidenhead
Gender: Male
Date of death: 14/09/1916
Place of death: Longueval, France
Manner of death: Killed in action
Age at death: 32
CWGC Ref: 549407
TWGPP Ref: 3821369
Address: 1 Cambridge Villas Maidenhead

Military details

Military Organisation: Army
Rank: Rifleman
Service Number: 4303

Relatives

Father William GRAY
Mother Annie GRAY
Brother William G GRAY
Sister Annie Leek GRAY
Sister Alice Gertrude GRAY
Brother Albert E GRAY
Sister Ethel GRAY
Brother Ernest GRAY
Brother Sydney Phillip GRAY
Wife Florence GRAY

Additional information

Arthur is remembered in the Delville Wood cemetery, XX.II.F.10. There are over 5000 men buried there who fell during the summer of July, August and September 1916. A search on www.Forces-War-records.co.uk - shows a picture of Arthur Stanley Gray with other officers from the London Regiment from The Illustrated War News, July 28th 1915.
Arthur Gray may have joined the Queen Victoria Rifles before war broke out. They were formed in 1908 as a Territorial Unit. They trained in London on Hampstead Heath and Lady Strathcona built them a hut in Grosvenor Square in London for their recreation. They went to France in November 1914 - the first Territorial unit to land. The battalion fought with 5th Division throughout 1915, at Hill 60, Second Ypres and St. Julien battles. Arthur died during the Battle of the Somme in 1916. At the time of his death the Rifle Brigade had been attached to the 56th Division, 169th Brigade and he probably died fighting near Arras. Delville Wood Cemetery was created after the Armistice when graves were brought in from a few small cemeteries and isolated sites and from the battlefields. Almost all of the 5,500 burials were of men who died in the July, August and September of 1916. Arthur is one of only 2,000 of these men who were identified.
According to the Parish War Memorial Committee records, Arthur was 32 when he died and living in Cookham Rise with a wife, Florence. The only Arthur Gray born in the area in 1883/4 lived in Cambridge Villas, somewhere near Crauford Rise, Maidenhead. His father William ran a stable and was a "Fly" proprietor - a horse drawn taxi - and he and his wife Annie had eight children. They were in this home in 1891 and 1901 but do not appear on the local 1911 Census. Arthur's elder brother Albert was in the Navy in 1911, training at the Royal Marine Artillery Quarters in Southsea and younger brother Sydney was a bus conductor, presumably in Maidenhead - but Arthur is not in the records. It is possible he had already joined the Queen Victoria Rifles in London which would account for his absence from the home census. During the war, brother Albert survived service in the Navy and Sydney ended his service with the Royal Army Service Corps in Dublin in 1918.

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