CWG: Captain Bertram Perkins

Captain Bertram Perkins

Bertram Falls Perkins was born in December 1872, the third of four children to Alfred and Mary Perkins. Alfred was a Colonel in the army and has met his wife while serving in Madras, India. He had retired by the time Alfred was born, and had brought his family back to England, where he set up as a Country Magistrate, living in the village of Wookey in Somerset.

Bertram was set for good things – by the time of the 1881 census, the family were living in Eastcott House, with a footman, cook, two ladies’ maids, two house maid and a governess to look after them.

Bertram’s military records are a little scant, but can be pieced together from his funeral notice.

The late Captain Bertram Perkins… joined the 1st Vol. Batt. of the Somerset Light Infantry as 2nd Lieutenant in February 1892, and, in November 1894, was transferred to his father’s regiment, the 3rd Batt. Welsh Regt. as Lieutenant… In October 1896 he went to South Africa and joined the Natal Mounted Police, in which he saw much active service… at the relief of Ladysmith and Dundee. Being stricken down with a very severe attack of enteric fever, he had to resign… and return home. As soon as he recovered his health he again retuned to South Africa as a Captain in the 3rd Battalion Welsh Regiment, where he saw much service…

Whilst at Vryburg, he was appointed Provost Marshal, and in recognition of his tact and energy in filling a very difficult position, was presented by the inhabitants of the district with a gold watch and an illuminated address. He was in possession of the Queen’s Medal with four clasps and the King’s Medal with two clasps. On his return home he took to farming… He retired from the Service in 1905, but on the outbreak of the present war was appointed as Captain to the 12th Battalion of the Sherwood Foresters. Unfortunately, his health, which had never been quite restored, broke down, and he was invalided out of the Regiment.

Wells Journal: Friday 16th June 1916

During the Great War, Captain Perkins’ regiment has been the 12th (Service) Battalion for the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment. His unit been shipped out to France in August 1915, but it is likely that he saw little, if any, time on the Western Front. After being invalided out, he succumbed to his ongoing illness on 14th June 1916, aged 43.

Bertram Falls Perkins lies at rest in the graveyard of St Matthew’s Church, in his home village of Wookey, near Wells in Somerset.

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