Alfred Henry Bruncher Barnard

Name

Alfred Henry Bruncher Barnard

Conflict

First World War

Date of Death / Age

20/02/1918
39

Rank, Service Number & Service Details

Private
534060
London Regiment
'B' Coy., 2nd/15th (County of London) Bn. (Prince of Wales' Own Civil Service Rifles)
'B' Company

Awards

British War and Victory medals

Cemetery/Memorial

JERUSALEM WAR CEMETERY
Row K, Grave 69.
Israel and Palestine (including Gaza)

Headstone

>Not Researched

UK Memorials

Watford Borough Roll of Honour,
Wesleyan Methodist (now Bushey & Oxhey) Church Memorial,
Oxhey,
Highams Park Baptist Church Memorial, London E4

Pre War

Born in 1878, Alfred Henry Brunker Barnard was the son of William Samuel and Mary Ann Barnard of Harrow, Middlesex.

His parents married 17 February 1868 at Harrow Parish Church. William died 1923 in the Hendon, Middx, district aged 86, and was buried 25 July in Roxeth Hill Cemetery, Harrow; Mary died 1924 in the Hendon district aged 83, and was buried 9 March, also in Roxeth Hill Cemetery.

Alfred married Mary in 1901 in the Winslow, Berks, district; they had one child Millicent Gladys (born 25/06/1904).

On the 1881 Census, aged 2 he lived in Harrow, with his parents and three siblings. On the 1891 Census, a scholar aged 12, he still lived in Harrow, with his mother and two siblings. On the 1901 Census, (of no occupation) aged 22 he still lived in Harrow, with his parents and two siblings.

By 1911 they were living at 93, Selwyn Avenue, Highams Park, Chingford, Essex where Alfred worked for the London County Council as an assistant in the Edmonton Branch and he lived in Chingford, Essex, with his wife, mother and one child.

By the time of Alfred’s enlistment, the family had moved to 38 Oxhey Avenue, Oxhey, Watford.

Wartime Service

Alfred enlisted at Bedford and was formerly Private 7469 15th (County of London) London Regiment (Civil Service Rifles).

Later he was Private 534060 in the London Regiment (Prince of Wales’ Own Civil Service Rifles), serving in “B” Company, 2nd / 15th Battalion. He served in the Egyptian theatre of war and was killed in action on 20 February 1918 outside the city of Jerusalem, aged 39.

Alfred is remembered with honour at the Jerusalem War Cemetery and is commemorated on the memorials at Bushey and Oxhey Methodist Church and at St Matthew’s Church, Oxhey.

Mary Barnard was one of many widows for whom the formalities surrounding the death of her loved one was a protracted and painful process. A sheaf of surviving documents testifies to the correspondence that took place. Mary received seven letters of condolence, including one containing Alfred’s last letter to her written two days before he was killed.

From receiving news of Alfred’s death in February 1918, it was not until 17 October 1924 that she attended the last memorial service in which his name was honoured.

She attended memorial services in London, in Bushey and in Harrow, where Alfred was born. In 1924 she attended a ceremony unveiling a memorial at County Hall, Westminster. She also received official condolences from the King, the Secretary of State for War and Alfred’s last employers, London County Council.

In the absence of a body to bury at home, she sought assurance from the Imperial War Graves Commission that Alfred had been buried and later re-interred with due reverence.

Additional Information

His pension record shows a grant of £5 was paid on 12/03/18 and a pension of 20/5 per week with effect from 02/09/18. There is also a supplementary note saying “Sent to AP. Branch 27.9.18. Granted from 2.9.18 at 42/4 per week.

He has an entry in the National Probate Calendar.

Alfred’s wife, Mary, never remarried and died on 9 September 1937 in the Watford district aged 60. Her daughter had Alfred’s name inscribed on the gravestone in Bushey churchyard. On 8 December 1990 she was buried there too.

Unfortunately, Alfred’s Service Record appears to be one that did not survive the World War Two bombing.

Information provided with the kind permission of Bushey First World War Commemoration Project – Please visit www.busheyworldwarone.org.uk.

Acknowledgments

Andrew Palmer
Dianne Payne - www.busheyworldwarone.org.uk, Jonty Wild, Sue Carter (Research) and Watford Museum (ROH on line via www.ourwatfordhistory.org.uk)