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  • The commonwealth war grave headstone marking the grave of Percy William  Drakes at Contay British Cemetery 
photo courtesy of Gringley history group
Person Details
20 Sep 1883
Percy was born at Spittal, Lincolnshire on 20th September 1883 and was the son of William John a farmer and Elizabeth Drakes, of The Manor House, Gringley, Doncaster, England. In the 1901 census the family are living at the Manor House,High Street Gringley at this time he is living with 2 brothers Bernard J and Charles E and 3 sisters Florence M ,Mabel E and Hilda M He emigrated to Canada and on 30th April 1909 Percy set sail from the port of Liverpool on a ship called 'The Virginian' bound for Montreal in Canada.
16 Sep 1916
32
81263 - CWGC Website
Lieutenant
  • MM MM Military Medal
Canadian Forces
Percy served with the Canadian Mounted Rifles and was attached to the 8th Canadian Trench Mortar battery. He enlisted on 16th November 1914 at Victoria British Columbia giving his age as 31 years and his religion as Roman Catholic. An article from the Gainsborough News dated 29th September 1916 reads :- Gringley We regret to report the death of Lieut Percy W Drakes , eldest son of Mr and Mrs Drakes , of the Manor House, whose death from wounds received in action in France has just been reported. Lieut Drakes was well known in this district , and more especially in Gainsborough, where he served his articles as auctioneer and valuer (sic) with Mr W H Hanson. He afterwards emigrated to Canada, and in the early days of the war was one of the first to volunteer to help the mother country by joined the Canadian Mounted Rifles. He soon proved his worth as a brave soldier and promotion quickly followed, and while on active service received his commission as Lieutenant. He was a young man of a sunny disposition, having hosts of friends wherever he lived, and his attractive personality made him a general favourite with his comrades. Though he may have died the noblest of deaths his loss is much deplored in the village and much sympathy is felt for his bereaved family in their irreparable loss. A further article in the Gainsborough News dated 10th August 1917 reads :- The numerous friends of the late Lieut Percy Drakes, who was killed in action while attending to a wounded comrade , will be pleased to know that the Military Medal awareded to him when a Sergeant , for bravery in the field has now been received by his mother. Mrs Drakes was kindly given the option by the Authorities of having it publicly presented to her in the presence of either British or Canadian Troops ,but preferred to receive it privately.
Percy had two brothers Bernard J and Charles Edward who also served on in the Army during the Great War, both survived. All three brothers are commemorated on St Thomas' Roman Catholic Church, Gainsborough. Source, ‘Gringley a Tribute to the 24 ‘ published July 2014 by the Gringley History Club. www.gohistory.org.uk (Courtesy of Alan Hickman)
Remembered on

Photos

  • The commonwealth war grave headstone marking the grave of Percy William  Drakes at Contay British Cemetery 
photo courtesy of Gringley history group
    Percy Wiliam Drakes - The commonwealth war grave headstone marking the grave of Percy William Drakes at Contay British Cemetery photo courtesy of Gringley history group
  • Photo shows Contay British Cemetery where Percy William Drakes is buried,
photo courtesy of CWGC
    Contay British Cemetery,Contay,France - Photo shows Contay British Cemetery where Percy William Drakes is buried, photo courtesy of CWGC