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  • Hempsall family grave Ordsall All Hallows churchyard. The inscription commemorates Alfred Hempsall.  Photograph courtesy of Peter Gillings
Person Details
Retford Nottinghamshire
Alfred was the son of William and Elizabeth Hempsall (née Levick). William and Elizabeth were married in 1874 (J/F/M East Retford) and had 13 children of whom only nine were living in 1911. Twelve children, all born in the East Retford registration district, have been traced on the census between 1881 and 1901, including Elizabeth's son, John William Levick, who was born before her marriage but took the surname Hempsall: John William Levick b. 1873 (O/N/D); Sarah Ann b. 1875 bap. Retford St Swithun 7 August 1875; Eliza birth registered 1877 (J/F/M); George b. 1878, Nellie b. 1881, Ada b. 1883 d. 1895 (J/F/M); Henry (Harry) birth registered 1885 (J/F/M); Kate b. 1886; Frank b. 16 March 1888; Edith b. 1889; Ethel b.1891 (A/M/J) and Alfred birth registered 1893 (J/F/M) bap. St Swithun 2 February 1893. There were also two other birth registrations (East Retford, Hempsall/Levick) but the children died young and did not appear on a census: Sidney b. 1884 d. 1896 and Jessie May b. 1897 (O/N/D) d. 1897. In 1881 William (40), a railway labourer, and Elizabeth (31) were living on Thrumpton Lane, Retford/Ordsall, with their four children John (7), Sarah (5), Eliza (4) and George (3). They were still living on Thrumpton Lane ten years later in 1891. William was now working as a coalman and he and Elizabeth had ten children: John a railway wagon greaser, Sarah, Eliza, George, Nellie (10), Ada (7), Harry (6), Kate (4), Frank (3) and Edith (1). Ethel was born later that year and Alfred in 1893. Ada died in 1895 (reg. J/F/M) aged 11. William died on 10 May 1898 aged 58. At the time of the 1901 census the widowed Elizabeth was still living on Thrumpton Lane but now working as a laundress. Only six of her children were living at home: Nellie, Henry an iron moulder, Frank, Edith, Ethel (10) and Alfred (8). Also in the home was her granddaughter Doris Hempsall (b. 1900). Her eldest son, John, a railway goods guard, was married and he and his wife and their two children were also living on Thrumpton Lane. In 1911 the widowed Elizabeth was living at 94 Thrumpton Lane, Ordsall, and recorded on the census as a market gardener on her own account. According to the information she provided on the census only nine of her 13 children were still living. Four were in the family home on the night of the census: Sarah Ann a 'worker at home', Henry an iron moulder, Frank a railway shunter and Alfred a railway lamp man. Elizabeth's granddaughter, Doris, was still living with the family. Her son John, his wife Annie and their four children were living on Stanley Street, Ordsall, and her daughter Edith was a domestic servant in Sheffield in the household of a merchant tailor. Ada had died in 1895 and of the remaining five children recorded on the census between 1881 and 1911 - Eliza, George, Nellie, Kate and Ethel - Eliza may have married in 1896 (Sims) and been living in Retford in 1911 and Kate probably married in 1907 (Bell or Sanderson) but has not yet been traced on the 1911 census. George has not yet been traced on either the 1901 or 1911 Census and Nellie and Ethel have yet to be traced on the 1911 Census or registrations of marriage. Neither those three nor Kate have been identified on the registrations of death. Their mother Elizabeth died on 11 February 1928 aged 76 years.
In 1911 he was a railway lamp man
26 Apr 1918
23
894573 - CWGC Website
268005
Enlisted Retford.
Private
7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment) Alfred enlisted at Retford. He died on 26th April 1918 and is buried in Mons (Bergen) Communal Cemetery, Belgium (grave ref. VI.C.1). CWGC - History of Mons (Bergen) Communal Cemetery (extract): 'Mons remained in German hands from the Battle of Mons (23 August 1914) until the arrival of the Canadian Corps on 11 November 1918. The communal cemetery was extended by the Germans on its north side and in this extension, now part of the town cemetery, were buried Russian, French, Italian, Romanian and Belgian soldiers, as well as German and Commonwealth. The 4th Canadian and 1st Casualty Clearing Stations, besides field ambulances, were posted in the town after the Armistice. They opened a new cemetery (Mons British Cemetery) across the road from the East gate of the communal cemetery, but the graves made there were later removed to the communal cemetery.' (www.cwgc.org)
CWGC headstone personal inscription: 'Asleep in Jesus' Inscription on family headstone, Ordsall All Hallows churchyard: In loving memory of William Hempsall of Thrumpton, died May 10th 1898 aged 58 years. Also of Elizabeth his wife, died February 11th 1928 aged 76 years. And of Alfred, their son, who gave his life for his country March 1918, aged 23 years. ‘No cross no crown’ WW1 Pension Ledgers index cards - named his mother, Elizabeth.
Remembered on

Photos

  • Hempsall family grave Ordsall All Hallows churchyard. The inscription commemorates Alfred Hempsall.  Photograph courtesy of Peter Gillings
    Alfred Hempsall - Hempsall family grave Ordsall All Hallows churchyard. The inscription commemorates Alfred Hempsall. Photograph courtesy of Peter Gillings
  • Buried in Mons (Bergen) Communal Cemetery, Belgium. (www.cwgc.org)
    Alfred Hempsall - Buried in Mons (Bergen) Communal Cemetery, Belgium. (www.cwgc.org)