Lieutenant C.C. Okey Taylor
3rd Battalion East Kent Regiment (The Buffs) & Trench Motar Battery
Cedric Charles Okey Taylor was the grandson of a local Reading dignitary. His death is reported in The Chronicle of 15th December 1916.
“Attached to the Trench Motor Battery Z/14, 14th Division, BEF, France, fell in action on Sunday, December 3rd 1916. He was not quite 22 years of age and the only son of Mrs. Taylor, of 31, Weltje Road, Ravenscroft Park, London, and the late Charles Warmsley Taylor, of Reading.”
His Captain communicated the news to his mother.
“He was at a gun position with his men when the dug-out was blown in. His death must have been instantaneous, and two of his men were killed with him. We have recovered his body, and he will be buried tomorrow, and as many of his brother officers that are available will attend. I need hardly say how deeply sorry all his friends are, and to me it I is a personal loss, since he has been associated with me longer than any other officer, and we have been together since he joined the Expeditionary Force. One cannot speak too highly of his ability, his devotion to duty, and the keen interest he took in all his men and their welfare. It is a sad loss which we all feel, and offer you our deepest sympathy.”
He is commemorated upon the grave of his grandfather in the Reading Cemetery and is buried in the Faubourg D’Amien Cemetery, Arras. Location I. J.58.
Upon his death he left his estate to his married sister Olive Margaret Okey Allner.
237th Field Coy., Royal Engineers
Arthur Tegg is commemorated on CWGC war pattern headstone and his is a registered war grave. Grave number 11118.
Arthur Tegg died on the 30 September 1916 aged 37. He was the husband of Annie Carter (formerly Tegg) of 248 Basingstoke Road, Reading. At the time of his death his address was given as 1. Rinefield Terrace, Reading. The 1911 census indicates that he was a bricklayer and he had two children Alexander 6 and Ruby 4 years.
A report in the Reading Standard 12 August 1916 gave notice of the wounding of Arthur Tegg. The Chronicle 13 October stated that he was wounded on 27July 1916 whilst trying to help a wounded man, his hip being fractured. He was sent from France to the Kitchener Hospital, Brighton, where he had his leg amputated but he died from complications. (Remember there were no antibiotics to fight infections in those days.)
His body was brought home to Rinefield Terrace and the funeral took place with full Military Honours on 5 October 1916. His chum Sapper Clarke, came 270 miles to attend the funeral. The Rev. J.F. Warren and the chaplain from Kitchener’s Hospital officiated.
Arthur Tegg had been in the army three months. He was one of three brothers serving in the army and a report of 27 May 1916 noted the serious wounding of a Private W. Tegg.
George E. Thatcher
1st Royal Berkshire Regiment
George Edward Thatcher, known to his friends and family as Jack, was the husband of
Mrs Sarah Thatcher (nee Clarke), of 6, River Road, Reading. He is commemorated on a small scroll stone, on the grave of one of his children, number 10263. Only the initials G.E.T. and Jack are written on the headstone but a CWGC search revealed his full name and details. The 1911 census indicates that he was a tin solderer at the tin works and he had three children – Lily, Cyril and Evelyn. Sharing their five room family home were his sister in law and three brothers in law.
George enlisted on 25 March 1915, serving first in the 3rd Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment before moving to the 1st Battalion. He arrived in France in December 1915. He was killed in action on the 14 November 1916, when the battalion were involved in the later stages of the Somme battle. He was killed taking a trench. Jack Thatcher is buried in Munich Trench British Cemetery, Beaumon Hamel, location C 31. The cemetery contains many men who were killed in the same action and Jack lies near Fred Gray who is also commemorated in the Reading Cemetery and who died on the same day.
George Thatcher was 37 when he was killed. The Chronicle of 8th December 1916 records that Jack was “killed instantly”, that he worked at Huntley, Bourne and Stevens before the war. He left a wife and five children. The author has visited Munich Trench Cemetery which is rather out of the way on Redan Ridge and the visitors book which at the time went back to 1975 revealed that family members visited the grave in1992 and 1997.