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Person Details
28 Aug 1889
Newmarket, Cambridge
Edward was the son of Thomas and Honor Sergeant (also 'Sargeant'). Edward's father Thomas was born at Fordham, Cambridgshire, and his mother Honor was born at Heacham, near Hunstanton, Norfolk. Thomas and Honor had six children of whom five were still living at the time of the 1911 census; Edward Nelson, Minnie Lavinia (b. 1890, Newmarket), Fanny (b. 1892, Newmarket), Bertha (b. 1893, Hopton, Suffolk) and Victoria (b. 1897, Hunstanton, Norfolk). Although Edward was born in 1889 he was not baptised until 16 March 1894 (Garholdisham, Norfolk). In 1901 the family was living at 1 Horns Market, Horns Road, Ilford, near Romford, Essex, where Thomas was a self-employed hairdresser and tobacconist. However, by 1911 Thomas and Honor were living at 1 Salisbury Terrace, Heacham, near Hunstanton, and only their youngest child, Victoria (14) was still at home. Edward had joined the Royal Navy in 1910 and in 1911 was serving in HMS Agamemnon at Chatham. He deserted in May 1911. On 25 August 1914, Edward married Ethel Smith; they were married in the registration district of Boston, Lincolnshire. Ethel was the daughter of William Smith, a railway platelayer, and his wife, Hannah, who lived on Launder Street, Orston. Edward and Ethel's daughter, Florence Ethel, was born in Southwell on 15 August 1915, a year after their marriage. Edward attested three months later giving his address as Westgate, Southwell. His widow, Ethel, completed a form for the army in May 1919 listing her husband's surviving blood relatives and named herself and their daughter who were living at High Street, Orston, and Edward's father, Thomas, and his two unmarried sisters, Bertha (24) and Fanny (26), all of whom were living at Alexandra Road, Grantham.
He was a baker's assistant when he joined the Royal Navy in 1910 and a baker when he enlisted in the Army in 1915.
19 Nov 1916
302305 - CWGC Website
Westgate, Southwell
Lance Corporal
8th Bn The Prince of Wales's (North Staffordshire Regiment)
On 24 January 1910 at the age of 20 Edward joined the Royal Navy on a 12 year engagement. Ships and shore establishments: HMS Acheron, 24 January 1910-31 March 1910 (Stoker Class II); Pembroke II, 1 April 1910-9 June 1910; HMS Agamemnon 10 June 1910-8 March 1911; 7 days cells, 9 March 1911-15 March 1911; HMS Agamemnon, 16 March 1911-1 May 1911. Documents marked, ‘Run [deserted] 1 May 1911, Agamemnon’. Edward's action may have been prompted by the circumstances which led to the week he spent in cells six weeks before he deserted. Edward attested on 16 November 1915 when he was 27 years 2 months old. Unsurprisingly he did not declare his previous service in the Royal Navy but the record does show that he was previously in the ASC (Army Service Corps). He transferred to the Army Reserve on 17 November and was mobilized the following year on 28 April 1916. He was posted to the 3rd Battalion, North Staffordshire Regiment, on 1 May and appointed unpaid lance corporal on 10 May and paid lance corporal on 3 August. He served in the British Expeditionary Force in France from 12 September 1916 and was killed in action two months later on a date given as 'between 18/19 November'. He is buried in Stump Road Cemetery, Grandcourt (grave ref. A.80). He qualified for the British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Alternative spelling of surname, 'Sargeant' (RN/Army records) and 'Sergant'/'Sergeant' on census records. His surname is given as 'Sergeant' on all three memorials on which he is commemorated in Nottinghamshire. The memorial in Orston St Mary correctly gives his regiment as the North Staffordshire, but Southwell Holy Trinity records him serving with the 1st Leicesters. His widow was his sole legatee. Ethel was awarded a pension of 18s. 9d. for herself and her daughter with effect from 18 June 1917.
Remembered on