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  • Nottingham Evening Post, 13 January 1915.
Person Details
According to the CWGC record, Joseph Henry was the son of Joseph and Selina Birkin of 513 Garden Coppice Road, Nottingham. The Nottingham Evening Post carried a report of Joseph's death in January 1915, publishing a photograph with a caption that he was 'late City Police'. Research has traced a Joseph Henry Birkin who was born in Nottingham in 1888 (A/M/J Nottingham). His parents were probably Joseph Birkin (birth registered 1866 J/F/M Nottingham) and Selina Birkin nee Hall (b. Hucknall, birth registered 1867 J/F/M Nottingham) who were married in 1887 (O/N/D Nottingham). Selina died at the age of 21 in 1888 (death registered A/M/J Nottingham) and was buried on 1 May 1888. In 1891, a few years after his wife's death, Joseph Birkin (25), a police constable, described as unmarried, was living at 'B543 Coppice Road', Nottingham, in the home of his father, Joseph Birkin (59), a police inspector. Also in the household was Joseph senior's wife, Mary (62), their grandson Joseph H. Birkin (2), their married daughter Fanny Walker (28), an assistant teacher, and her husband, John Walker (32), a hosiery assistant. Joseph Henry's father married Mary Hannah Hopkinson in Pinxton, Derbyshire, on 2 August 1897. By the time of the 1911 Census they had had four children of whom only three survived, but in 1901 they were living at 2 Poplar Terrace, St Ann's, with their two children Sidney (2) and Hilda (1). Joseph's son by his first marriage, Joseph Henry (12), was still living with his grandparents at 'B453 The Gardens', Coppice Road, Nottingham, in 1901. His grandfather had now retired as a police inspector and died seven years later on 19 June 1908. By the time of the next census in 1911 his widow, Mary, was living with her married daughter, Fanny Walker, at 41 Cooper Street, Nottingham. Joseph Henry's father was living with his second wife and family of three, Sidney, Hilda and Dorothy (5), at 26 Alison Rise, Nottingham, in 1911. Joseph Henry has not yet been traced on the 1911 Census but the UK Register of Soldiers' Effects records that he enlisted in the army at Peterborough on 27 May 1905 in which case he may still have been serving with his regiment and recorded on the Military Census. The same army record gave his occupation on enlistment in 1905 as a labourer and, oddly, his place of birth as 'Thursday Island, Australia.' Although the Nottingham Evening Post records that Joseph Henry was 'late City Police' he is not commemorated on the Nottingham City Police war memorial; it is possible therefore that the newspaper had confused its information since both his father and grandfather of the same name served with the City Police. No family notices of Joseph Henry's death have been found in the local paper.
He joined the army in 1905 and may have served continuously until his death in 1914.
25 Oct 1914
446212 - CWGC Website
Alexandra Princess of Wales's Own (Yorkshire Regiment)
2nd Bn. He may have been a regular soldier on the outbreak of war. He disembarked France on 5 October 1914 and died of wounds at Ypres. He is buried in Ypres Town Cemetery (grave ref. A1. 18). He qualified for the 1914 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. According to the Medal Index Roll, his medals were sent to his legatee, his father Joseph Birkin, at '543 Garden Coppice Road Nottingham' (7/12/20).
Death index: Joseph Birkin b. abt 1831 d. 1908 (A/M/J Nottingham) age 77. Probate: Birkin Joseph of 543 Garden Coppice-road Nottingham died 19 June 1908 Probate Nottingham 3 July to Mary Birkin widow. Effects £35. Photograph published 13th January 1915 in the Nottingham Evening Post, caption: 'Private JH Birkin, of the Yorkshires, late City Police, died of wounds at Ypres, October 25th.' Courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918. His father, Joseph Birkin, was named on army records as his legatee.
Remembered on


  • Nottingham Evening Post, 13 January 1915.
    Joseph Henry Birkin - Nottingham Evening Post, 13 January 1915.