Private Richard Summers


39021 Private Richard Summers enlisted 1 September, 1914, with 2/4 Battalion Hampshire Regiment, Kitchener's New Army. After 46 days' service he was discharged in October 1914. He re-joined in January 1916, at the commencement of national conscription, Regimental No. 28461, apparently with the Worcestershire Regiment, then transferred to the Warwickshire Regiment and finally back to his old 2/4 Battalion, Hampshire Regiment, with which he served in Egypt from March 1916. His Battalion was drafted from Egypt to 186 Brigade, 62nd (2nd West Riding) Division, to reinforce Allied divisions on the Marne (at Tardenois) holding their ground and no longer retreating, as the April Ludendorff offensive ran out of steam. 62 Division came under temporary French command in support of the French Fifth Army. Richard died on 23 July 1918, aged 23. His body was not found but he is commemorated on the Soissons Memorial near the Aisne and Marne rivers, with 3900 others whose graves are not known. French Fifth Army advanced 4 miles on a 4 mile long front. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission lists Richard's Regimental No. as 39021.

Richard was born in 1894 in Wheatley, the elder son of Hugh Summers, builder's labourer, himself also born in the village in 1864, and Annie Maria Joyner, born in Worminghall in 1861. In 1901 and 1911 the family were living at 7 Bell Lane and in 1911 father and son were general labourers. The casualty report (Oxford Times, 7 September 1918), said he was ‘a keen cricketer and footballer and played for Wheatley at both games'. See also reference to him in the Wheatley in a World at War chapter.

He had lived at 7 Bell Lane.

Hampshire Regiment
Address on Map:
Genealogy Links:
Record Number: