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L/35729 GNR. S. A. BASTICK.  R.F.A.


Samuel Archibald Bastick was born in the first quarter of 1880 in Mile End, London.  His father was Thomas Bastick (b. 1860 in Lambeth), a house painter and decorator.  His mother was Susanna Payles (b. 1855 in Mile End).  Thomas and Susanna were married in 1879 and Sam was born the following year.  They had five more children: Edwin (b. 1882), Bertie (b. 1884), Eleanor (b. 1189), Maud (b. 1891) and Lizzie (b. 1894).


In May 1904, Sam married Gertrude Marie Harris (b. 1881 in Shoreditch) and the couple had four children: Olive (b. 1908), Doris (b. 1911), Alice (b. 1913, died same year), and Archie (1915-1918).  In 1911, Sam, Gertrude and Olive lived at 53 Woodhouse Road, Leytonstone, and Sam worked as a house painter and decorator, like his father.


Samuel Archibald Bastick enlisted in 178th (East Ham) Brigade RFA around 10 July 1915 and was assigned service number 35729. At some point he was transferred to D/276 (this latter detail comes from CWGC) but I don’t know the date.  Sam died from pulmonary tuberculosis at a temporary military hospital in Rubery, Kings Norton, on 3 June 1918, aged 38.  His 3-year old son Archie had died six months earlier.

Rank:  Gunner

Service No: L/35729

Date of Death: 03/06/1918

Age:  34

Regiment/Service:  Royal Field Artillery, “D” Bty, 276th Bde.

Cemetery/memorial reference: Screen Wall. 11. 11773.



In 1919, Gertrude married again.  Her second husband was Robert James Knight (b. 1878 in Shadwell).  Robert had five children from a previous marriage.  Gertrude died in 1947.


Sam’s brother Edwin also lost his life in the War.  He was 19780 PVT. E. BASTICK, 9th Battalion, Devonshire Regiment.  Edwin was born in the first quarter of 1882 in Mile End.  In 1901, he married Rose Northan (b. 1884 in Leyton) and the couple had five children: Caroline (b. 1901), Edwin (b. 1903), Emily (b. 1907), Eleanor (b. 1910) and Julia (b. 1913).  In 1911, they were living at 33 Argyll Street, Leytonstone.  Edwin was a house painter, like his father.  Edwin enlisted in the Devonshire Regiment at the outbreak of War and was assigned service number 19780 and posted first to 1st Garrison Battalion, then to 8th Battalion and finally to 9th Battalion.  Edwin’s Medal Index Card says he landed in Egypt on 16 October 1915.  This was with 1st Garrison Bn. who were in Egypt from 1915 until 1917, when they were moved to Palestine.  (My guess is that it was at this point that Edwin transferred to 8/9Bn in Italy).  8th and 9th Battalions were both in the same brigade (20th Brigade in 7th Division).  7th Division moved from France to Italy in November 1917, and then back to France in September 1918.  When 7th Division returned to France, 8Bn remained with 20th Brigade, but 9Bn left the Division.  At the beginning of September, 9Bn was at Montecchio Maggiore, near Vicenza in northern Italy.  They left there on 13 September and arrived at Canchy in northern France four days later and it was here on 23 September that 9Bn formally left 20Bde and 7th Division.  They were in training at Canchy until 28 September when they moved first to Franvillers, then to Heudicourt, southwest of Cambrai.  On 3 October they went into action near Ronssoy.  Edwin was killed in action the following day as the battalion sought to capture the village of Beaurevoir.  According to the War Diary for this period, during this action (4-11 October) the Battalion had 3 officers and 54 Other Ranks killed, 9 officers and 158 Other Ranks wounded and one OR missing.  Since Edwin has no grave, it may well be that he was this missing man (presumed killed).


Rank:  Private

Service No: 19780

Date of Death: 04/10/1918

Age:  36

Regiment/Service:  Devonshire Regiment, 9th Bn.

Cemetery/memorial reference: Panel 4

Cemetery/Memorial:  VIS-EN-ARTOIS MEMORIAL

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