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  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone at Brandhoek  Military Cemetery, Belgium. Courtesy of Murray Biddle
Person Details
Hucknall Torkard Nottinghamshire
Walter was the son of William and Mary Elizabeth Challand. William (b. Stapleford) and Mary (b. Bulwell) were married in about 1889 and had six children: Emma, Percy, Walter, John J, Ada and Eric, all of whom were born in Hucknall. In 1891 William (28), a coal miner, and Mary (20) were living on Brook Street, Hucknall, with their first child, Emma (10 months). By 1901 they were living at 27 Wollaton Street, Hucknall, and had four children, Emma (10), Percy (7), Walter (5) and John (10 months). Two more children were born in the years before the next census, Ada and Eric. The family had moved to 72 Co-operative Avenue, Hucknall, by 1911 but only the youngest five children, Percy (17) and Walter (15) who were both pony drivers at a pit, and John (11), Ada (9) and Eric (1) were in the home on the night of the census. Walter's brother, Percy, enlisted in the army on 10 September 1914 (16251 Private, Sherwood Foresters) but was discharged two months later on 20 November 1914, 'non-effective by phothisis ['pulmonary tuberculosis or other wasting disease']'. He named his parents and brother Walter as his next of kin; they were then living at 34 Yorke Street, Hucknall. According to a newspaper report, the family was still living at this address when Walter was killed in 1917. William and Mary Challand later lived at 12 South Street, Hucknall Torkard, (CWGC).
In 1911 he was a colliery pony driver below ground at Linby pit.
17 Oct 1917
22
139852 - CWGC Website
103187
He enlisted in Hucknall
Driver
Royal Field Artillery
Walter William Challand 64th Brigade Ammunition Column, Royal Field Artillery, enlisted in June 1915 and served in France. He was killed with others from his unit by a bomb dropped from an aeroplane at 5.45am on 17th October 1917. He is buried in Brandhoek New Military Cemetery No. 3, Belgium (Grave Reference: I.L.14).
Registers of Soldiers' Effects: His father was his legatee. Hucknall Dispatch 1/11/1917: 'Hucknall Gunner. For a long time no casualties were recorded in the Royal Field Artillery so far as Hucknall was concerned, but of late several brave lads with the guns have fallen victims of the war, thus showing that they are more actively engaged now than in the early stages of the war. The latest Hucknall lad in that capacity to be killed is Driver Walter Challand, at the early age of 22 years. His home was in Yorke street, and before enlisting in June, 1915, he was employed at Linby pit. After completing his training in this country, he was sent out to France three months later, and was on foreign soil for two years before he was granted a furlough. His return visit to France was not so fortunate for him, for he was killed on October 17. He was a youth with many local friends, and in the Army he was also a favourite with the “boys.” The following letter has been received from his officer:- “Dear Mrs. Challand – It is my very painful to inform you of the death of your son – Driver W. Challand – of the unit under my command. He was killed with others of his comrades at about a quarter to six on the morning of October 17 by a bomb dropped in our camp by an enemy aeroplane. The poor boy was killed almost instantly. We have buried him this afternoon, and his funeral was attended by many of his comrades. I feel the loss of your son very deeply. He was such a willing lad and a general favourite with his officers and all his comrades. I cannot find words to express how deeply I feel the loss of your boy – he was a grand lad. Allow me to express to you my very deep and most sincere sympathy in your loss. H.S. Knowles, Capt. R.F.A.”' Article courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
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Photos

  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone at Brandhoek  Military Cemetery, Belgium. Courtesy of Murray Biddle
    Walter William Challand - Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone at Brandhoek Military Cemetery, Belgium. Courtesy of Murray Biddle