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  • Buried in Carnoy Military Cemetery, France. (www.cwgc.org)
Person Details
Basford Nottingham
James was the youngest son of Henry and Catherine (Kate) Wagstaff (née Rowland). His father Henry was born in Derbyshire in 1853. His mother Catherine Rowland was born in Dublin, Ireland, in about 1864. Henry probably served in the army as he and his wife were married in Ireland in 1880 (reg. J/F/M Longford) and their first child, Ellen was born in November 1880 at the Royal Barracks. They probably had seven children including Ellen; the younger children were born in Nottingham: Kate b. Bulwell 1882 d. 1896, and her siblings who were born in Basford, Rowland b. 1885 bap. Hyson Green St Paul 1885, Gertrude b. 1887 bap. St Paul 1888, Lilian b. 1889, Henry b. 1891 d. 1895 and James b. 1894. The family has not yet been traced on the 1881 Census, but the second child was born in Bulwell in 1882. In 1891 Henry, a gas works stoker, and his wife were living in Eden Yard, North Gate, Basford, with their five children, Ellen (10), Kate (8), Rowland (6), Gertrude (4) and Lilian (2). Henry was born later that year but died in 1895, and James was born in 1894. Catherine probably died in 1896 (reg. J/F/M Basford), and her daughter Kate died later the same year aged about 13. Henry has not yet been traced on either the 1901 or 1911 Census but his five surviving children were dispersed by 1901. His eldest daughter Ellen (20) was a laundress and living in Daybrook, Arnold, as a boarder. Roland (16), a collier, and his sister Gertrude (14), a lace worker, were both living on Pomfret Street, Nottingham, boarders in the household of a widow, Emma Mee. Lilian (11) was an inmate at Beech Avenue Workhouse, New Basford, while James (6), was a 'pauper' in the Nottingham Training Institution for Pauper Children on Hartley Road, Nottingham. Rowland attested in the Militia (4th Notts & Derby, 642 Private) in January 1905. He was then living on Henry Street, Nottingham. He named his brother James of Front Street, Arnold, as his next of kin although James would only have been about 10 years old at the time. Rowland completed the attendance requirement from 1905 to 1908 and then joined the Special Reserve on 14 June 1908. By 1911, Ellen was married and living with her husband Joseph Hopewell (m. 1901) and their four children in Arnold. Rowland, now working as a coal miner, had married Ellen Morley in 1906 and they and their daughter were living on Little Duke Street, Sutton in Ashfield. Gertrude was married to Ernest Mather (m. 1906) and living at 27 Monsall Street, New Basford, with their young daughter, Ernest's niece and nephew, Charlotte Mather and Arthur Mather, and Gertrude's brother James, a bottle washer. Lilian, a laundry maid, was a boarder in Arnold. James named his brother Rowland and his father as his next of kin when he joined the army in 1914. His father was living at 27 Monsall Street, Nottingham, which had been his married daughter Gertrude's address in 1911. Henry probably died in 1938. Gertrude and Ernest were still living at 27 Monsall Street when Ernest died in 1949.
1911 - bottle washer. He was a 'van man' when he joined the army in 1914.
26 Oct 1916
293365 - CWGC Website
27 Monsall Street, New Basford.
Royal Field Artillery
'A' Bty 91st Bde Royal Field Artillery James attested on 18 August 1914 aged 20 years 135 days and joined at Woolwich on 19 August. He was posted to 91st Bde RFA on 15 January 1915. In February 1915 the Brigade's three six-gun batteries were re-organised to four four-gun batteries (A, B, C & D Batteries). 91st Brigade served with the 20th (Light) Division which had been established as part of Kitchener's Second New Army in September 1914. The Division moved to France in July 1915. While serving in the UK, James was twice admonished with the loss of one day's pay on each occasion for being absent without leave, on the first occasion for overstaying leave from 9.30pm 4 October 1914 to 8am 5 October 1914 and for absence without leave from 13 July 1915 to 9.30am 14 July 1915. James embarked at Southampton on 21 July 1915, disembarking Le Havre the following day. He was awarded Field Punishment No. 2 on five occasions while serving with the BEF: 29 July 1916 - 3 days for neglecting to comply with an order; 19 December 1915 - 7 days for being absent from billet when on active service from 5pm till found by the picquet at 8pm; 29 April 1916 - 3 days for being absent from roll call; 18 September 1916 - 5 days for neglecting to comply with an order and 20 September 1916 - 7 days. He was admitted to hospital on 23 December 1915 suffering from shell shock but returned to duty on 26 December 1915. James was killed in action on 26 October 1916 and is buried in Carnoy Military Cemetery, France (grave ref. A.10). James served at home for 337 days and 1 year 98 days with the BEF, total 2 years 70 days. He qualified for the 1915 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. CWGC - History of Carnoy Military Cemetery (extract): Carnoy is about 10 km from the town of Albert. 'The cemetery was begun in August 1915, by the 2nd King's Own Scottish Borderers and the 2nd King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, when the village was immediately South of the British front line. It continued in use by troops holding this sector until July 1916, when Field Ambulances came up and a camp was established on the higher ground North of the village. It was closed in March 1917. From March to August 1918, it was in German hands.' (www.cwgc.org)
CWGC Additional information: 'Son of Henry and Kate Wagstaff, of 27, Monsall St., New Basford, Nottingham.' Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Roll of Honour,’ 17 November 1916: ‘Wagstaff. Killed in action, October 26th, Gunner James Wagstaff RFA. He lived a noble life and died a noble death. From his loving fiancée Annie.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Annie placed an ‘In Memoriam’, notice in the same newspaper on 26 October 1917. Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam,’ 26 October 1916: Wagstaff. In loving memory of James Wagstaff, gunner RFA. Killed in action October 26th, 1916. Dad.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam,’ 26 October 1916: Wagstaff. In loving memory of Gunner James Wagstaff, RFA. Killed in action October 26th, 1916. From the ones who loved him best. Loving father and sister Gerty.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam’, 29 October 1917. Wagstaff. In loving memory of Gunner James Wagstaff, fell in action October 26th, 1916. A day of remembrance sad to recall. Loving sisters and brother.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Registers of Soldiers' Effects/WW1 Pension Ledgers: his father Henry was his legatee, residence New Basford. James' medals were sent to his father at 27 Monsall Street, New Basford.
Remembered on


  • Buried in Carnoy Military Cemetery, France. (www.cwgc.org)
    James Wagstaff - Buried in Carnoy Military Cemetery, France. (www.cwgc.org)