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  • Photograph published in the Mansfield Reporter, 5 January 1917
Person Details
Mansfield Woodhouse Nottinghamshire
Louis Bernard was the son of Bernard Joseph Neale and his wife Hannah (formerly White). Louis' father was born in Box, Gloucestershire, in about 1860; his birth was probably registered as 'Bernard Joseph Neale Brown, 1860 reg. Stroud.' His mother Hannah was born in Mansfield in about 1854. Bernard and Hannah White were married in 1888 reg. Nottingham) and had at least three children: Louis Bernard b. 2 June 1889 bap. Mansfield St Philip 16 June 1889, Charles Edward b. 1892 bap. St Philip 21 August 1892 and Cyril Doyle b. 1899 bap. St Philip 2 April 1899. Hannah had two children before her marriage to Bernard Neale; Harold White (b. Manchester) and William White (b. Mansfield Woodhouse or Sutton in Ashfield abt. 1888). Harold's birth registration may be: 'Harold Eversden White, 1879 J/F/M Chorlton Lancs.' but there are several potential records for William. In 1891 Bernard (31), whose occupation was given as a 'professor of languages (school)', and Hannah (36), were living on Portland Street, Mansfield Woodhouse, with Harold (13) a cotton mill hand, and William (3), who were described as Bernard's stepsons, and their son Louis (1). The family was still living on Portland Street in 1901. Bernard was now working as a rate collector (Mansfield Woodhouse UDC) and private tutor. Harold was an insurance agent and William an office boy, Louis (11) and his brother Charles (8) were still at school and the youngest chlld Cyril was aged 2. Harold was still described as Bernard's stepson, but William was described as his son; this might have been an error by the enumerator. By 1911 Bernard and Hannah were living at 1 Wooldand Grove, Mansfield. Only Louis a builder's clerk and Charles a law clerk in a solicitor's office, were in the home on the night of the census. Their younger brother, Cyril, was an 'inmate' at a school run by the Sisters of Charity, a Catholic Order, in Lower Bullingham, near Hereford. Harold and William have not yet been identified on the 1911 Census. However, Benjamin completed the census with the information that he and his wife had been married for 23 years and had five children; the figure probably included Hannah's two sons. Louis' mother Hannah died in 1925. His father Bernard married Edith L McNaughton in 1926 and they continued to live at 1 Woodland Grove; this was still their address when Bernard died on 10 March 1941. Edith survived him. Louis married Ada Florence Newton (b. 1891) on 16 July 1912 in Shirebrook. They had four children who were born in Mansfield: Louis Charles Neale Newton b. 1912 , Ernest b. 1913 d. 1913, Barbara Ann b. 30 July 1915 d. 1917 and William Arthur b. 1917. Louis Charles' surname on subsequent civil and military documents was 'Neale'. Louis and Ada were living at 45 Carlton Street, Mansfield, when they were married in 1912 but later moved to 13 Charles Street, Mansfield, and were still at this address in 1919 when Ada completed a form for the army listing Louis' surviving blood relatives. Ada gave the names of herself and the two surviving children, Louis Charles and William Arthur, who were living with her, Louis' parents Bernard and Hannah of 1 Woodland Grove, and his two 'full blood' brothers, Charles (27) and Cyril (21) who were also living at 1 Woodland Grove. She did not include his two half-brothers, Harold and William, writing 'none' in this section. A report of Louis' death in the local paper in January 1917 recorded that a brother, William, was also serving, as well as his brother Charles Edward in the Welsh Fusiliers (23147 Private). Their brother Cyril attested in March 1917 and served in the 8th Bn Border regiment (29413 Private); he spent time in France and also with the army of occupation in Germany and was discharged in 1919. Louis' widow Ada remarried in 1927, marrying Thomas Belcher (b. 1905). In 1939 when the England & Wales Register was compiled they were living in Mansfield Woodhouse. Ada died in 1975.
Clerk for Vallance's (builders) of Clumber Street, Mansfield.
27 Dec 1916
73393 - CWGC Website
45 Carlton Street, Mansfield.
8th Bn Royal Scots Fusiliers
Louis Bernard Neale attested on 11 December 1915 at the age of 26 years 202 days. He had previously served for four years in the Sherwood Rangers (Yeomanry) as a Trooper. He transferred to the Army Reserve the following day, 12 December, and was mobilized on 28 April 1916 in the Sherwood Foresters, Louis transferred to the Royal Scots (8332) on 6 May 1916. Louis was in hospital with tonsillitis from 5 August-10 August 1916 then was granted leave from 30 September to 3 October 1916. On 27 November 1916 he embarked at Folkestone for France, disembarking at Boulogne the same day. He joined at Etaples on 28 November, and was posted to the 8th Bn Royal Scots on 8 December 1916, joining 'in the field' on 9 December. Two weeks later on 24 December he was treated by the Field Ambulance for gun shot wounds to the chest (shell) and admitted the same day to No. 11 Casualty Clearing Station where he died of his wounds on 27 December 1916. He was buried at Varennes, presumably in a cemetery close to the Casualty Clearing Station. His Army Service Record has a note of the place of burial but this is partly illegible. However, the Imperial War Graves Commission was able to identify his grave in February 1923 (see 'Extra information') and the CWGC record shows that Louis is buried in Varennes Military Cemetery, Somme, France (grave ref. i.F.2). He qualified for the British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Louis's brothers-in-law, Frank Newton and Arthur Newton, his wife Florence's brothers, also died in the war, Frank on 6 September 1917 and Arthur on 24 October 1917. (See records on this ROH). CWGC headstone personal inscription: 'Gone but not forgotten by his loving wife & children' Papers in Louis' Army Service Record include this memo dated 1 February 1923 to the Director of Records, Imperial War Graves Commission, London: 'Ref: Beale, Neale or Peale. With reference to your No. 5/5271 dated 13th instant, there has been traced in the Royal Scots a No. 8332 Private Lewis (sic) Bernard Neale, 8th Bn. who died of wounds in No. 11 Casualty Clearing Station, France on 27-12-16. The recorded place of burial is Varennes British Cemetery, 6 miles NW of Labert. There is no trace in any of the other Scottish regiments affiliated to this office. Next of Kin, widow – Mrs A Neale, 13 Charles Street, Mansfield, Notts.’ Louis personal possessions were listed in April 1917 and returned to his widow at 13 Charles Street; they comprised: identity disc, letters, photographs, rosary, 1 handkerchief, 1 notebook, 2 pairs glasses, 2 linen bags, 1 charm, badges, collar buttons, 1 pair scissors, 2 buttons, 1 purse, 2 coins, 1 counterfoil and two other items (descriptions illegible). His widow Ada was awarded a pension of 22/11d for herself and two children with effect from 9 July 1917. (Presumably Louis and William b. June 1917, Barbara having died earlier that year). The pension was increased to 29/9d a week from 10 February 1919. Mansfield Reporter, 5 January 1917: ‘Mansfield Woodhouse Man Killed in France. Private LB Neale. ‘Another name must be added to the great list of those who have laid down their life in the cause of right against might. We refer with much regret to the death of Private Louis Bernard Neale, eldest son of Mr BJ Neale, of Woodland Grove. The distressing news was received on Monday. Pte. Neale was attached to the Royal Scots Regt., joining the colours with his group on the 1st May last. Prior to the war he was a trooper in the Yeomanry, and for many years was employed as a builder’s clerk in the offices of Mr C Vallance, Clumber-street, Mansfield. He received army training at Derby, and various camps, and had only been in France about a month when he met his death. He was in his 28th year, and leaves a wife and two small children. Mr Neale’s second son Charles, is also in the army with the 11th Royal Welsh Fusiliers. He joined the Colours two years ago and served some time in France, from whence he was invalided home. On his recovery he was sent to Salonica, and is now in the Macedonia Mountains. Up to his joining the ranks he was in the office of Mr CF Elliot Smith, where he had been for a number of years.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Mansfield Reporter, 5 January 1917 (extract): ‘‘Mansfield Woodhouse Urban District Council. Meeting of the Council held on Tuesday night ...[This] together with a resolution of sympathy to Mr BJ Neale (collector) on the loss he has sustained by the death of his son, killed in France, was passed.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Mansfield Reporter, 12 January 1917: ‘Mansfield Woodhouse. We omitted to mention that the late Pte. Louis Neale, whose death we reported in our last week’s issue, has another brother, William, serving in France.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Mansfield Chronicle Advertiser. 14 January 1917: 'Death of Pte L B Neale. Eldest son of Mr Bernard Neale of Woodland Grove, Mansfield Woodhouse. Died of chest wounds received on 27/12/1916. Had only been in France 5 weeks and leaves a widow and 2 children. Worked in the offices of Mr Vallance of Clumber Street. His younger brother, Charles is serving with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers.' The following report of the death of Louis' brother-in-law, Arthur Newton, also mentions Louis' death and that of Arthur's brother, Frank: Mansfield Reporter, 16 November 1917 (extract): ‘Another Woodhouse Hero Killed. Trooper Arthur Newton. The toll of the war amongst Mansfield Woodhouse young men, as in other towns and villages, has been very great, and it is our painful duty to record yet another victim in the person of Trooper Arthur Newton, who gave his life for King and country, on the 24th October ... What makes the occurrence more pathetic is the fact that only a few weeks ago his brother was killed in action [Frank Newton, 6 September 1917], while just prior to that his brother-in-law was killed in action.' (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Mansfield Reporter, 27 March 1925: ‘Mansfield Woodhouse. Death. The death of Mrs Hannah Neale, which occurred at her residence in Woodland Grove on Saturday evening came a shock after so brief an illness, to her family and friends. The deceased lady, who was most highly respected by all who knew her, had been ill for about a month, and only two hours before her death she spoke of feeling better. A native of Mansfield, she was the wife of Mr BJ Neale, the rate collector for the Mansfield Woodhouse Urban District Council and she would have attained her 71st year in June. She had resided n Mansfield Woodhouse for over 30 years. The interment took place on Tuesday morning at Shirebrook, and a service, conducted by Father Froes was held in the Roman Catholic Church of St Joseph. The family mourners included Mr BJ Neale (husband, Mr Charles and Mrs Neale (son and daughter-in-law), Mr Cyril and Mrs Neale (son and daughter-in-law), Mrs LB Neale and son (daughter-in-law and grandson).’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk)
Remembered on


  • Photograph published in the Mansfield Reporter, 5 January 1917
    Louis Bernard Neale - Photograph published in the Mansfield Reporter, 5 January 1917