Albert Whitehurst (1887–1918)


Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) G/49302 4th and 23rd Battalions

Photo courtesy Brenda Wallis Smith

Photograph og Albert Whitehurst

Albert followed in his father’s footsteps by becoming a gamekeeper. He was employed by the Strutt family, initially in the Alderwasley area and then at Brailsford. He married Lilian Davies in 1914. He was posted to France in 1915 where he was wounded twice and then in March 1918 he was assumed killed in action. He is named on the Arras Memorial, France and also on the war memorial at Brailsford.

IWM – Private papers of Pte A Whitehurst (Royal Fusiliers G/49302)
Albert was born on 9 February 1887 in the Ripley sub-district.

He was married at Ansley Parish Church, Warwick on 2 September 1913 to Lilian Davies.
Albert Whitehurst 26 bachelor, gamekeeper of Brailsford; father Joseph Whitehurst (deceased) gamekeeper.
Lilian Davies 24 Spinster of Ansley, father William Richard Davies gardener
Witnesses were William Richard Davies and Henrietta Whitehurst

A postcard to him was addressed as Pte A Whitehurst; 5 Platoon B Coy; 23rd Royal Fusiliers; BEF

A hand-written notelet outlining Albert's army career:
Left Tidworth for France Nov 16/15.
Wounded May 1st/16.
Went back to Battalion June 9th.
Wounded July 27th.
Arrived Birkenhead July 31st.
Left Birkenhead Sept 30th.
Went to Dover Oct 9th.
Left Dover for France Dec 7th.
Rejoined 23rd R.Fus Dec 12/16.
Admitted to hospital Jan 13th/17.
Left for England Febry15.
Left Gen Hospital March 15.
Went to Dover March 24th
Crossed to France May 30th, rejoined Royal Fus.
Admitted to hospital again in Sept; sick.
Rejoined regiment again in November.
Came home on leave following March 7th 1918.
Returned to France March 23rd
Reported missing March 28th

Royal Fusiliers
October 16, 1918
Dear Mrs Whitehurst
I have heard nothing of your husband Pte A Whitehurst. He was reported as missing but I have no doubt that he was killed on March 28. It was a right heavy attack on that day and I think that very few of our men were taken prisoner, if any.
Nothing can be done I am afraid to find out for certain. His company was much cut up on March 28 and a great many were killed or wounded. If you have never heard from him you must I am afraid take it for granted that he was killed on that date.
I know how dreadful this uncertainty is for you in waiting for news that never comes. I wish I could help you. I will enquire from men in his company that may have been near him at that time .
Yours with sympathy
Noel Mellich

20 August 1919
CERTIFIED that it appears from the records of this Office that No 49302 Private Albert Whitehurst, 4th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers was missing on the twenty-eighth day of Match 1918 and that as no further information concerning him has since been received, it has been presumed for official purposes that he died on or since that date.
The soldier was serving on the above mentioned date with the British Expeditionary Forces
W E Brown,
For the Assistant Financial Secretary
War Office, London

Medal Index Card
He was awarded the Victory and British War medals.

Photograph of Albert Whitehurst's family

Whitehurst family at Alderwasley
Left to right standing: Florence, Ernest, Rose, Joseph, Henrietta (Etta) and Albert
Front: Joseph and Ann

From: "A Pennine Childhood" by Brenda Wallis Smith (ISBN 1484195671) - with permission

Church Memorial
The following memorial is in the old churchyard south of the chancel at All Saints Church,The Green, Brailsford, Derbyshire Dales. (A grey headstone with stepped and recurved head and incised foliation in the top corners. Inscription incised in upright capital lettering).
26 JULY 1889 – 30 APRIL 1982

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Initials A
Nationality United Kingdom
Rank Private
Regiment/Service Royal Fusiliers
Unit "Z" Coy. 4th Bn.
Date of Death 28/03/1918
Age 29
Service Number G/49302
Additional information Son of Joseph and Annie Whitehurst, of Alderwasley, Matlock; husband of Lilian Whitehurst, of Brailsford, Derby. Twice previously wounded.
Casualty type Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference Bay 3

WW1 War Graves Certificate for Albert Whitehurst

Photograph Copyright Chris Preston (wikispaces)

Brailsord War Memorial

War Memorial in Brailsford Church
A Whitehurst Royal Fusiliers

Whitehurst, Albert, Private, G/49302, Z Company, 4th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers.
Born Crich, Derby.
Enlisted Derby.
Killed in Action, 28th March 1918.
Aged 29.
Son of Joseph and Annie Whitehurst, of Alderwasley, Matlock; husband of Lillian Whitehurst, of Brailsford, Derby. Twice previously wounded.
Commemorated on the Arras Memorial, Faubourg d’Amiens Cemetery, Arras, France, Bay 3.

1911 Census
Aged 24
Employed as a gamekeeper
Son of Ann Whitehurst, of The Saracen's Head, Brailsford, Derbyshire

Soldiers' Effects Book
Albert Whitehurst ; 4th Royal Fusiliers; Private 49302; death assumed 28.3.18; War Gratuity £17; paid out to:
5.12.19 widow Lilian £6 5s 6d
19.2.20 widow Lilian £12 10s10d


1901: Alderwasley

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Joseph Whitehurst Head 51 Gamekeeper Dilland, Staffs
Ann Whitehurst wife 51   Carsington
Joseph Whitehurst son 26 Bricklayers labourer Hulland
Ernest Whitehurst son 19 Frame minder at hosiery works Crich
Albert Whitehurst son 14   Crich
Henrietta Whitehurst daughter 11   Crich

RG13 piece 3235 folio 10 page 11

1911: Leicester

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Ann Whitehurst Head (wdw) 61   Carsington
Albert Whitehurst son 24 Gamekeeper Crich Carr
Henrietta Whitehurst daughter 21   Crich Carr

RG14PN21021 RG78PN1254 RD437 SD1 ED8 SN30