Norman Stanley Allard was born on 3rd December 1892 in the village of Corsley, Wiltshire, halfway between Frome and Warminster. The younger of two children, his parents were Benjamin and Mercy Allard. Benjamin was a farmer who passed away when his son was only 14 years old. Mercy, who was born in Frome, moved the family back to her home town and Norman found work as a clerk at a printing firm in the area.
War came to Europe and, in December 1915, Norman was called up. There is little specific information about his military service, although his records show that he was 5ft 9ins (1.75m) tall and had varicocele – enlarged veins in his scrotum – listed as Distinctive Marks.
Initially assigned to the King’s Royal Rifles, Private Allard spent the first year of his service on home soil. He was eventually dispatched to France in March 1917, serving there for a year. On 22nd March 1918, he was wounded in a gas attack, and medically evacuated back to England.
He was called back into service, and assigned to the 9th Battalion of the Northamptonshire Regiment. He remained on home soil, working as part of the Labour Corps in Cley-next-the-Sea in Norfolk. Sadly, however, it seems that his injuries were to prove too much, and the now Corporal Allard was discharged from military service after just three months.
At this point, Norman’s trail goes cold. He returned home, and passed away there on 13th March 1919. He was just 26 years of age.
Norman Stanley Allard was laid to rest in the graveyard of Holy Trinity Church. This became a family grave, and his mother and sister were also buried there when they passed in 1924 and 1940.