Victor Slater

British army, unit and service number not confirmed

An anonymous soldier

Victor Slater is one of the men on the Bottesford ‘church list’ of WW1 Servicemen, next to that of his brother Reginald.

Family Background

Victor Slater was born in Bottesford, his birth was registered in April/May/June 1897. He was baptised on the 6th June 1897 at Bottesford, the second 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 were in the iron-ore mining village of Holwell, near Melton Mowbray, where Victor’s father Herbert Slater worked as a joiner and wheelwright. This census recorded three boys: Albert (8, born in Granby, Notts), Victor (3, born at Bottesford), and Reginald (1 year old, born in Leicestershire).

By the 1911 census, they had moved to Ab Kettleby.  His father was still working as a joiner wheelwright “on his own account” i.e. he was self-employed. There were now five of their children at home, Albert, Reginald, Percy, Hilda and Bertram, but Victor had left and, aged 13, was employed as a farm servant by Edward James at Nook Farm, Bottesford.

Military Record

No service record has been found for a Victor Slater with the above birth details.

Medal Index Cards have been found for men named Victor Slater, but it has not been possible to connect them definitively to the above Reginald Slater. However, the choice can be narrowed down based on the information that Victor Slater did not have any second Christian name, so far as we are aware. If all the ‘Victor Slaters’ with a second fore-name are eliminated, then there are only four men left from among the records we have examined. These are:

Private Victor Slater 23467 3rd, 9th then 10th Battalions, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, then Pte 28962 9th East Surreys

Driver 951002 V. Slater, Royal Field Artillery

Corporal 11801 V. Slater, Royal Dublin Fusiliers

Drummer 13212 V. Slater, 2nd Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment).

Though we cannot be certain from this evidence which, if any, was the man from Granby-Bottesford, the last two are perhaps improbable. On this tentative basis, it seems likely that he was the Private from the Loyal North Lancs and East Surrey Regiments, or the Driver from the RHA.

It should be added that there was another Victor Slater, 16533 10th Scottish Rifles, but he was sadly Killed in Action on the 25th September, 1915.

After the war

Victor Slater married Kate Goodacre from Granby in 1924. The following details are given in the Grantham Journal on the 3rd January 1926: “A VERY PRETTY WEDDING was solemnised St. John’s Church Nottingham, between Mr. Victor Slater, of Bottesford, and Miss Kate Goodacre, of Granby, younger daughter of the late Mr. A. and Mrs. Goodacre.  The bride was dressed pretty fawn and blue hat, and was given away by her brother, Mr. J. Goodacre. Miss Hilda Slater (sister of the bridegroom) was bridesmaid. Mr. Bertram Slater was “best man.” Both bride and bridegroom are very highly respected, and they received numerous and presents, including one from the family, with whom the bride lived for seven years. The bridegroom is in the employ of the Barnstone Cement Works.

In 1922, 1923, 1924 living in the hamlet of Sutton in the Vale, near Granby. In 1925 Victor is found in Granby itself, living with other people named Slater, presumably his relatives. Kate, his wife, was presumably there also, though she was not on the electoral roll until 1930. In 1931, according to the Electoral Roll of that year, there was a large Slater group in Granby, which included Victor and Kate, but it is not clear how they were related to each other.

In 1939 the family still lived at Granby. Victor Slater, born on the 9th May, 1897, a joiner at cement works, his wife Kate Slater, born in the 14th February, 1903, and three school children; Sheila (b.29th June, 1931), Margaret (b.26th September, 1932) and Anthony V. (b.31st August, 1934). They also had a son called Reginald. On 23rd February, 1945, the Grantham Journal reported: “Pte Reginald Slater of the RASC who is stationed in Derbyshire was knocked down by a car in Nottingham on Sunday and sustained a broken leg. Pte Slater, who is 19 years of age, is the elder son of Mr & Mrs V Slater of Granby”. Reginald must have been born in 1926, and was probably the oldest of their children.

Victor Salter died in 1996, aged 99, according to information in public family trees displayed by Ancestry.co.uk (e.g. the Murphy and Osborn family trees).

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