[Skip to content]



  • Photo published in the Nottingham Evening Post on 25th March 1915, courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War 
Hucknall 1914-1918
Person Details
Frederick was the son of Frederick Innocent and of Elizabeth nee Bowring. According to the 1911 Census Frederick and Elizabeth had been married for 24 years by 1911, ie married approximately 1887, but to date the only record found of a marriage between a Frederick Innocent and an Elizabeth Bowring was registered in 1917 (O/N/D Nottingham). However, there is a record of an Elizabeth Jane Bowring, the daughter of a Nicholas Bowring, whose birth was registered in 1865 (J/F/M Radford) and who in 1881 was 19 years old and a dressmaker living with her father in Sherwood. She married a William Clay in 1884 (marriage registered O/N/D Nottingham). Frederick and Elizabeth had six children; Frederick Bowring (birth registered 1888 J/F/M), Lilian (b. 1889 O/N/D), John Nicholas (b. 1892 A/M/J), Laura (birth registered 1894 J/F/M), Percy (birth registered 1900 J/F/M and Elizabeth (birth registered 1904 J/F/M). All the children were born in Nottingham. In 1891 Frederick (28) a book keeper and Elizabeth (29) a dressmaker, were living at 7 Sophie Road, Radford, with their two children Frederick (3) and Lilian (1). By 1901 they had moved to 6 Wellington Square, New Radford. Frederick (37) was now working as a bricklayer's labourer and Elizabeth (39) was still working as a dressmaker. They now had five children, Frederick, Lilian, John (9), Laura (7) and Percy (1). By 1911 the family was living at 5 Park Street, Lenton. Frederick (48) and Elizabeth (48) now had six children, all of whom were still at home: Frederick (23) a wine merchant's assistant, Lilian (21) a cigar maker, John (19) a grocer's assistant, Laura (17) a machinist, and Percy (11) and Elizabeth (7) who were still at school. From information in the 'In Memoriam' notices placed to Frederick in the local paper it seems that his brothers John and Percy also served in the war. John was probably a Lance Corporal (27027) in Princess Charlotte of Wales's (Royal Berkshire) Regiment. However, no trace has been found of Percy in the military records. Frederick's father probably died in 1930 (death registered December Nottingham).
In 1911 he was a wine merchant's assistant
25 Feb 1915
27
2912019 - CWGC Website
7845
He enlisted in Nottingham
Private
2nd Bn Royal Munster Fusiliers
According to an article (with photograph) which appeared in the Nottingham Evening Post in March 1915, Frederick was a regular soldier and had been trapped behind enemy lines after the fighting around Mons in August 1914. He and a number of other British soldiers evaded capture and were eventually hidden by villagers in Northern France. However, Frederick and his companions were eventually found by German soldiers searching the village and surrendered. There were reprisals against the villagers who had helped them and the soldiers and one of the villagers were executed. Frederick's body was later recovered and reinterred in Guise Communal Cemetery, Aisne, France (Coll Grave). CWGC details of Guise Communal Cemetery 15 Rue St. Medard: ‘In the north-east part of the cemetery are twelve 1914-18 war casualties. Of these, ten were shot by the enemy, at the Château, in February, 1915.’ Eleven of the twelve men died on 25 February 1915 of whom ten are buried in four graves: (1) 6240 Private D Buckley RMF, 7845 Private F Innocent RMF, 7925 L/Cpl J Moffatt RMF. (2) 9852 Private D Horgan RMF and 10084 Private J Nash RMF. (3) 9381 Private G Howard Connaught Rangers and 7010 Private M Wilson CR. (4) P8713 Private T Murphy Connaught Rangers, 9172 Private W Thompson CR and 6594 Private J Walsh CR. The eleventh man, L/Cpl JW Stent 15th The King’s Hussars, is buried in a single grave. He qualified for the 1914 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Note: CWGC/UKSDGW give date of death as 25 February 1915 but the Register of Soldiers' Effects gives his date of death as 27 August 1914 (Etreux) - this is an error and could either be the date that he arrived in theatre or when he was separated from his unit during the fighting around Mons. The confusion in contemporary records of the date of Frederick's death probably arose because it would have been some while before it was known what had befallen him after he was reported missing in action in August 1914. Nottingham Evening Post notice (abridged), 12 March 1915: 'Innocent. Killed in action August 27th last (sic), Private F Innocent, Royal Munster Fusiliers, aged 27 years.' Nottingham Evening Post notice (abridged) with photograph, 25 March 1915: 'Private F Innocent Royal Munster Fusiliers, killed in action aged 27, late of 16 (-).' The following 'In Memoriam' notices appeared in subsequent years and it is possible that the family was unaware of the circumstances of Frederick's death. Nottingham Evening Post 27 August 1916: 'INNOCENT. In loving memory of Private F. Innocent, Royal Munster Fusiliers who died for his country August 27th, 1914. Gone, but not forgotten. From his sorrowing father, mother, sisters, and brothers.' 'INNOCENT. In loving memory of Private F. Innocent, Royal Munster Fusiliers, killed in action August 27th, 1914. A noble life sacrificed. From his sorrowing mother, father, sisters, and brothers (Jack in Germany).' Jack was probably his brother Lance Corporal John Nicholas Innocent, 1st Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment. Nottingham Evening Post 27 August 1917: 'INNOCENT. In loving memory of Private Frederick Innocent, killed in action at Mons, August 27th, 1914. Loved too well to be forgotten. Fiancée Nancy.' 'INNOCENT. – In loving memory of Pte. Fred Innocent, Royal Munster Fusiliers, killed in action August 27th, 1914. Too dearly loved to be forgotten. Father, mother, sisters, brothers Jack (in Germany) and Percy (with the colours).' Nottingham Evening Post 27 August 1918: 'INNOCENT. In fond and loving memory of Pte. Frederick Innocent, killed in action at Mons, August 27th, 1914. Never shall his memory fade. Sweetheart Nancy.' His father, Frederick, was his legatee.
Remembered on

Photos

  • Photo published in the Nottingham Evening Post on 25th March 1915, courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War 
Hucknall 1914-1918
    Frederick Bowring Innocent - Photo published in the Nottingham Evening Post on 25th March 1915, courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918