CWG: Gunner Alfred Richards

Gunner Alfred Richards

Alfred Henry Richards was born in 1891, the oldest of five children to William Henry Richards and his wife Jane. William (who was known as Henry) worked in the local paper mill, and this is a trade that his two sons – Alfred and Leslie – were to follow as well.

Paper making was a driving force in this part of Somerset during the Victorian era, employing a large number of people in Wells and the nearby village of Wookey, which is where Alfred and his siblings were born.

Details of Alfred’s military service are sketchy. He enlisted as a Gunner in the Royal Horse Artillery, although when during the war this happened is unknown.

His troop – the 18th Brigade, 1st Somerset Royal Horse Artillery – was stationed in the UK for the first couple of years of the war, before serving in the Middle East. Again, I have not been able to confirm how much of this service Gunner Richards was involved in.

Alfred returned to Somerset after being demobbed, but within a few months of the end of the war, he succumbed to double pneumonia. He passed away on 1st March 1919, aged just 28 years old.

Alfred Henry Richards lies at rest in the cemetery in Wells, Somerset, not far from his home.


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