Charles Francis Holmes (1898–1918)


King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry 37186 10th Battalion, 7th Platoon, 21 Division

Charles was born at Crich in 1898, the son of William and Eliza Holmes. He enlisted while working at Lea Mills, joining the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry in February 1917. His record states that he died on 7th February 1918 and is buried at Tincourt New British Cemetery. He is also remembered on the Lea Mills Memorial and on the Crich War memorials inside and outside St Mary’s Church.

On the original, badly damaged, Lea Mills Roll of Honour there used to be a small photograph of Charles. This would probably have been taken from the set of three postcards produced showing most of the volunteers. A possible unidentified photograph from that set is as follows:

lea mills postcard WW1

Medal Roll Index Card
He was awarded the British War and Victory Medals. Died

Ancestry Record
Charles Francis Holmes born Crich, enlisted at Lea Mills. Formerly 5/86739, T.R. Battn. Died.

Newspaper Report

Derbyshire Courier, 16 February 1918
Mr and Mrs William Holmes Folds Yard, Crich, received news on Tuesday that their youngest son, Private Charles Francis Holmes, K O Y L I, had died in hospital in France, the result of pneumonia. Following a telegram which stated that he was in a critical condition a letter was received from the 55th Casualty Clearing Station, BEF, as follows: "Dear Mrs Holmes, – I am so very grieved to have to tell you that your son took a turn for the worst last night, and the poor lad died at 6:45 pm he became unconscious and passed away peacefully in his sleep. I can only repeat for your consolation that nothing was spared for him. He was a good little patient, and it may gratify you to know that the sisters and orderlies are really heartbroken about him. We have had so many serious patients that it seemed all the harder. Everyone did the best for the boy. I hope you will accept our sincerest sympathy. Private Homes will be buried in the British military cemetery nearby and his personal belongings sent to you in due course. – Yours very sincerely D.P.Foster, sister in charge". The letter was dated 8 February. By sad coincidence, a field card came from Private Homes by the same post, dated 6 February, stating that he was going on well. Private HOLMES , who was 19 years of age, had been in the Army just a year. He was formerly employed at Lea Mills in the pressing department. Since being in the army he has been in hospital for about four months, having previously had an attack of pneumonia.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Initials C F
Nationality United Kingdom
Rank Private
Regiment/Service King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Unit 10th Bn
Date of Death 07/02/1918
Service No 37186
Casualty type Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference V. A. 4
War Graves Certificate for Charles Francis Holmes in WW1

Lea Mills War Memorial

Lea Mills War Memorial

Crich War Memorial

War Memorial outside St Mary's Crich

Crich War Memorial north face

North facing panel of St Mary's War Memorial

WW1 memorial plaque in St Mary's Crich

Wall plaque inside St Mary's Church, Crich

Soldiers' Effects Book
Charles Francis Holmes; KOYLI; Private 37186; died 55 CC Station France; War Gratuity £3; paid out to:
1.5.18 father William £9 12s 9d
14.11.19 father William £3 0s0d


1901: Crich Market Place

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
William Holmes Head 39 Labourer limestone quarry Crich
Eliza Holmes wife 48   France British subject
Thomas Taylor son 21 Gritstone cutter Crich
James Taylor son 15 Labourer Crich
Benjamin Taylor son 14 Labourer Crich
William H Holmes son 10 School Crich
Florrie Holmes daughter 9 School Crich
Sam Laurence Holmes son 6 School Crich
Charles F Holmes son 2   Crich
Tamar A Taylor daughter 18 Domestic servant Crich

RG13 piece 3231 folio 20 page 32

1911: Near Church, Crich

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
William Holmes Head 49 Road foreman RDC Crich
Eliza Holmes wife 53   France
Thomas Taylor son 31 Quarry man stone getter Crich
Harry Holmes son 20 Plate layer colliery Crich
Florence Holmes daughter 19   Crich
Samuel Holmes son 16 Gardening Crich
Charles Holmes son 12 Schoolboy Crich
Benjamin Taylor son (wdwr) 24 Collier hewer Crich

RG14PN20985 RG78PN1251 RD436 SD4 ED14 SN95