Reginald Slater

British army, unit and service number not confirmed

An anonymous soldier

Reginald Slater is one of the men on the Bottesford ‘church list’ of WW1 Servicemen, next to that of his brother Victor. Regrettably, his service identity has not been confirmed.

Family Background

Reginald Slater was born in Ab Kettleby, Leicestershire, and his birth was registered in the 1st quarter of 1900. According to his death certificate, he was actually born on 11 December, 1899, so was not registered until the New Year.

He was the third child of Herbert Slater, born in Granby, Nottinghamshire in 1870, and Annie Eliza neé Turner from Swayfield Lincolnshire, who was born in 1872. They had 8 children: Albert (b.1893), Victor (b.1897), Reginald (1900-1971), Percy (b.1902), Hilda (1905-1963), Bertram (b.1907), Mabel (1912-1990) and Reuben (1916-1922).

The family moved around the area living in Granby, Bottesford, and Holywell. In 1901, they lived at the iron-ore mining village of Holwell, near Melton Mowbray, where Victor’s father Herbert Slater was a joiner and wheelwright working “on his own account” i.e. self-employed. This census recorded three boys: Albert 8 born in Granby, Notts; Victor 3, born at Bottesford; and Reginald, 1 year old, born in Leicestershire.

In 1911, Herbert and Annie Eliza lived at Ab Kettleby, near Melton Mowbray. Herbert described himself as a joiner and wheelwright, again “on his own account”. There were five children in the household, Albert (now 18, working as a bricklayer’s labourer), Reginald (11, at school), Percy (9), Hilda (6), and Bertram (4).

It is possible that they had moved to Bottesford by the time WW1 started. The youngest boy, Reuben, was born in Bottesford in 1916, and died when only six years old in 1922 (Murphy family tree, Ancestry.co.uk).

Military Records

No military record has been clearly identified for this Reginald Slater either in the British Army WW1 Medal Rolls Index Cards 1914 – 1920 or British Army Service Records 1914 -1920. He was not entered on the absent voters list. It should be born in mind that his birth was not registered until early 1900, so he would not have become eligible to enlist until early 1918, and could only have experienced a relatively short period of active service. In addition, he would not have reached voting age (21) until 1921, hence his absence from the absentee voter’s list is no surprise.

The following Reginald Slaters are listed in the Medal Card Indexes however it is not clear at this stage whether either one of them is the above Reginald Slater.

Gunner 342036 South Wales Borderers then 197116 Royal Garrison Artillery,

Private 17377 10th Bn. Gloucestershire Regiment

After the War

Reginald Slater married Elizabeth Squires in Newark in 1920. According to the Osborn family tree (Ancestry.co.uk), they had two daughters, Dorothy F (b.1922) and Joyce (probably born 1923, though several Ancestry family trees give her birth as 1922 in Chorley, Lancs, which seems improbable in that it would make her only 6 months younger than her sister Dorothy).

Searches for his address from Electoral Rolls and the 1939 register have not been successful. However, his death  in 1971, aged 71, registered at Grantham, is confirmed by several family trees as well as the General Register.

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