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  • Photograogh published in the Nottingham Evening Post dated 22nd November 1915. Courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918.
Person Details
Basford Nottingham
He was the son of Enoch and Louisa Wildgust (nee Whitehouse). Enoch was born in 1870 and married Louisa (b. Birmingham) at Basford St Leodegarius in 1891. They had five children of whom three survived: Enoch Francis b. 1896, Sarah Louisa b. 1897 (reg. 1898) bap. Basford St Augustine and Rosa (also 'Rose') b. 1899 bap. St Augustine. The family was living at 50 Rawson Street, Basford, when both Sarah and Rose were baptised. In 1901 Enoch (30) a coal dealer on his own account, and Louisa (30) were living at 40 Whitbread Street, New Basford, in the parish of St Augustine, with their three children, Enoch (5), Louise (3) and Rose (1). His father, a coal dealer, died in 1904 age 34 and by 1911 Louisa (40) and her three children were living with Enoch's widowed mother, Sarah Frances (73), a shoe dealer on her own account, at 50 Rawson Road. At the time of Enoch's death in 1915 the family was living at 165 Gregory Boulevard, Nottingham, and this was still their home when his eldest sister, Louisa, a nurse, died in Bagthorpe Infirmary from pneumonia on 26 November 1918 aged 21. His mother Louisa, died in Leicester in 1953. Enoch's family and his sweetheart Hilda continued to place 'In Memoriam' notices in the local paper until at least 1919.
He was a picture frame maker in 1911 employed by Boots in the Art Department. He attended Chelsea Street Baptist Church Basford, where he was a 'devoted helper, and the church held a memorial service for him. According to an article in the Boots house magazine, 'Comrades in Khaki', Enoch was captain of the Boots (miniature) rifle team and a noted swimmer.
13 Oct 1915
19
737258 - CWGC Website
1605
Enlisted at Nottingham
Private
1/7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
Private Enoch Francis Wildgust, served with the 1/7th Battalion Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment) (Robin Hood Rifles). He served in France from 28 February 1915 and was a bomb thrower. Enoch was killed in action during the attack on the Hohenzollern Redoubt on 13th October 1915. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, France (Panel 87 to 89). The Loos Memorial forms the sides and back of Dud Corner Cemetery. Enoch qualified for the 1915 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. The Hohenzollern Redoubt 'was a heavily fortified position in the German lines, and one of the keys to the Loos battlefield. Beyond was The Dump and Fosse 8. It was attacked by units of the 9th (Scottish) Division on 25th September 1915, who were all but wiped out here. The 12th (Eastern) Division was heavily involved in early October ... On 13th October 1915 the 46th (North Midland) Division attacked, and again casualties were very heavy. The Redoubt remained firmly in German hands, and the area achieved an infamous reputation as one of the great killing grounds of the Loos.' (www.battlefields1418.50megs.com/hohenzollern.htm battlefield).  CWGC - History of Dud Corner Cemetery and the Loos Memorial (extract): 'Dud Corner Cemetery stands almost on the site of a German strong point, the Lens Road Redoubt, captured by the 15th (Scottish) Division on the first day of the battle. The name "Dud Corner" is believed to be due to the large number of unexploded enemy shells found in the neighbourhood after the Armistice. The Loos Memorial commemorates over 20,000 officers and men who have no known grave, who fell in the area from the River Lys to the old southern boundary of the First Army, east and west of Grenay, from the first day of the Battle of Loos to the end of the war. On either side of the cemetery is a wall 15 feet high, to which are fixed tablets on which are carved the names of those commemorated. At the back are four small circular courts, open to the sky, in which the lines of tablets are continued, and between these courts are three semicircular walls or apses, two of which carry tablets, while on the centre apse is erected the Cross of Sacrifice.' (www.cwgc.org)
Registers of Soldiers' Effects: His mother, Louisa, was his legatee. Nottingham Evening Post, 'In Memoriam', 25 October 1915: ‘Wildgust. In loving memory of Enoch, the beloved husband of Louisa Wildgust, who died October 24th 1904. Fondly remembered by his wife and children.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 30 October 1915 (late advertisements): ‘Wildgust. Mrs Wildgust and Family, 165 Gregory-boulevard, desire to thank all kind friends for sympathy shown to them in their great loss of an only son and brother.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 'Roll of Honour', 10 November 1915: ‘Wildgust. Killed in action October 13th, Private Enoch Wildgust, 1/7th Robin Hoods, aged 19 years, dearly-loved and only son of Mrs Wildgust, 165 Gregory-boulevard. He lived a noble life, he died a noble death. From his sorrowing mother, sisters, and sweet-heart Hilda.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 'Roll of Honour, 11 November 1915: ‘Wildgust. Killed in action October 13th, Private Enoch Wildgust, 1/7th Robin Hoods, aged 19 years, dearly-loved and only son of Mrs Wildgust, 165 Gregory-boulevard. He lived a noble life, he died a noble death. From his sorrowing mother, sisters, and sweet-heart Hilda.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 22 November 1915 (photograph): ‘Pte E Wildgust, 1/7th Robin Hoods, 165. Gregory Boulevard, killed in action Oct. 13th, aged 19.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam’, 14 October 1918: ‘Wildgust. In loving memory of my dear son, Pte Enoch Wildgust, Robin Hoods, killed in action October 13th 1815. Always in our thoughts. Loving mother & (-).’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam’, 14 October 1918: ‘Wildgust. In affectionate remembrance of Pte Enoch Wildgust,killed in action October 13th 1915. Dearly loved, sadly missed. Hilda.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 'In Memoriam', 13 November 1919: ‘Wildgust. In loving memory of Pte. Enoch Wildgust, 1/7th Robin Hoods, killed in action October 13th 1915. A noble life laid down. From his loving mother and sister.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 'In Memoriam', 13 November 1919: ‘Wildgust. In affectionate remembrance of dear Enoch, killed in action October 13th, 1915. A noble life laid down, a beautiful memory left behind. Hilda.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) An article in the Boots 'Comrades in Khaki' magazine December 1915 issue has an item about Private Enoch Wildgust. It reads " That marvellous act of British bravery, the taking of the Hohenzollern Redoubt was accomplished at a heavy cost to the gallant Robin Hoods and E Wildgust, one of the best lads that ever served with Boots, was amongst those who made the final sacrifice. Pte Wildgust whose father had been a marksman of note with the Robin Hoods of an earlier day was a shot of great repute amongst the members of Boots miniature rifle range. He was Captain of the team which won the Don Jardine Cup in 1913 and many a handsome trophy attests his skill with the rifle, he was moreover scarcely less celebrated as a swimmer. The call to arms took him from the Boots art department at Nottingham, and on the field his energy, courage and coolness won him high regard, he rendered very gallant service as a bomb thrower in which capacity he was an expert, and while so engaged at Hohenzollern on October 13th he met his death. E Wildgust was only 19 years of age when death cut short a career of great promise. He was active in good works and on October 31st a memorial service was held at the Chelsea Street, Baptist Church to which he had devoted his youthful endeavours.' (Boots 'Comrades in Khaki', December 1915, 'Dead on the Field of Honour' (photograph), Nottinghamshire Archives, ref. RB.38) Chelsea Street Baptist Church minutes: this item appears in the 1916 series of minutes and relates to a meeting held on Sunday October 24th 1915 from which this item was omitted from the minutes: 'A verbal expression of sympathy was given to Mrs Wildgust and family in regard to the death of our dear young friend and devoted helper, Mr Enoch Wildgust, who was killed in action at a German redoubt.' (Nottinghamshire Archives NC/BP/44/3) Nottingham Evening Post, 'Deaths', 28 November 1918: ‘Wildgust. On the 26th inst. at Bagthorpe Infirmary of pneumonia, Nurse Wildgust, aged 21, the dearly loved daughter of Louisa Wildgust, 165 Gregory-boulevard. Loved by all. RIP.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Probate: Wildgust Louisa of St Catherine’s Nursing Home Dane Hills Leicester widow died 22 June 1953 probate Leicester 2 September to Rosa Groom (wife of Walter Wesley Groom) and the said Walter Wesley Groom bank manager. Effects £1461 13s. 11d.
Remembered on

Photos

  • Photograogh published in the Nottingham Evening Post dated 22nd November 1915. Courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918.
    Enoch Wildgust - Photograogh published in the Nottingham Evening Post dated 22nd November 1915. Courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918.
  • Commemorated on the Loos Memorial. (www.cwgc.org)
    Enoch Wildgust - Commemorated on the Loos Memorial. (www.cwgc.org)