Charles Mitchell

Rank: Private

Service Number: 9072

Date of Birth: 1885

Regiment:  1 Bn., King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment)

Date of Death: 23 May 1915

Age at death: 30

Cemetery / Memorial: Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial

Country: Belgium

Grave / Reference: Panel 12

Relatives: Son of Isabella Mitchell

Address: 65 Angel Street, Hadleigh, Suffolk

 Private Mitchell was entitled to the above three medals; 1914 Star with clasp, British War Medal and the British Victory Medal.  The whereabouts of Private Mitchell's actual medals is currently unknown.

Private Mitchell was entitled to the above three medals; 1914 Star with clasp, British War Medal and the British Victory Medal.  The whereabouts of Private Mitchell's actual medals is currently unknown.

 Charles Mitchell with his brothers outside their house on Angel Street

Charles Mitchell with his brothers outside their house on Angel Street

 Charles Mitchell's CWGC Commemorative Certificate

Charles Mitchell's CWGC Commemorative Certificate

Charles Mitchell had lived in Angel Street.  He was born in 1885 and enlisted with King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment when they were at Colchester in 1906.  At the outbreak of war they were in barracks at Dover, but by 24 August they had arrived in France and only 2 days later suffered their first casualties. 

On the Ypres Salient, 24th May saw the Battle of Bellewaarde Ridge where the Germans released the largest gas cloud yet seen.  The worst of the gas hit the 10th and 12th Brigades of the 4th Division which included the 1st King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment who were in trenches at ‘the brickworks’ hamlet of La Brique, just to the north of Ypres, they were behind the front line but in the path of the gas cloud.  

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Also serving with the battalion on that day was Hadleigh man Sergeant Percy Lumley.  Both men were killed in action that day.  Both men are commemorated on the Menin Gate in Ypres.  By the end of May the actions that became known as the Second Battle of Ypres were over, the town lay in ruins and both sides had fought themselves to a standstill. 

By landing in France before 22 November 1914, Charles was entitled to the 1914 Star, sometimes known as the ‘Mons’ Star.  This was proudly worn by the survivors of the BEF who also dubbed themselves the ‘Old Contemptibles’ a name that they were supposedly first called by the Kaiser who labelled the stubborn force that stood in his way as that “contemptible little Army”.

 

Click on the pictures below to view Charles' gallery

 

We hope that this page has been able to tell the story of Charles Mitchell.  If you know of any information which might help to add to the story then please get in touch.