Bottesford Squad Mobilization 1914

By Christopher Harris

Bottesford Squad Mobilization 1914

Earnest William (Bill) Christmas front left.  Charlie Calcraft centre back (So I’m told).  Any other names or details?

This page was added on 09/01/2008.

Comments about this page

  • Many thanks for this excellent photograph. It is Charlie Calcraft centre back. We have a 1912 photograph of him on a scouting photograph which we hope to put on the web site in the near future. He is also shown (less clearly) in the 1912 photograph outside Bottesford Post Office. Hopefully comparison with other photographs might help to identify others in the picture. Many thanks again for all your effort in making these images available.

    By David Middleton (11/01/2008)
  • I have a photo of leonard if anyone is interested.

    By susan hemmings (05/08/2009)
  • Elsewhere on this site I have given some service details for E W Christmas and now here are the details for Charles W Calcraft. His MIC shows him as Private 617 in the Leicester Regiment, although the photo clearly shows that this man attained the rank of corporal. Calcraft transferred to the Royal Engineers as Sapper (private) 2303. Later 422110 also Sapper Royal Engineers. He went to France on 5/3/1915 and was demobbed om 11/10/1919. He earned the British and Victory Medal and the 1915 Star and a T.Eff medal of 1919 (I am not sure what this is!). I now want to play devil’s advocate! as the man in the centre of the back row is a corporal and Calcraft’s records suggest that he never rose above the rank of private, could the man in the front row on the right be Calcraft? He certainly looks very similar or are the records wrong!
    Finally, does anyone have any ideas for names for the other chaps?

    By Jonathan D'Hooghe (17/01/2010)
  • Many thanks for the comment and information. Comparison with Scouting photographs of Charles Calcraft seems to indicate that he is the person on the back row. For example see Scouting in Bottesford

    By David Middleton (18/01/2010)
  • I would agree with you that the chap in the scouting photo is indeed the same chap centre back row in this photo. The 1st and 2nd battalions of the Leicesters were in Ireland and India when war was declared, we also know that Kitchener’s New Army came into being long after 1914, therefore, the men in the photo in 1914 must have belonged to the 1st/4th or the 1st/5th battalions of the pre war Territorial Army, indeed we know from Ernest Christmas’ record that he was in the 1st/5th. Therefore, why does Calcraft’s MIC state that he was a private and indeed, why did he transfer to the REs and take a demotion to sapper if indeed he was a corporal in the Leicesters?? Many WW1 service records were lost in the blitz in WW2 but I shall check the records to see if his service record survived. He may have been demoted for some misdemeanour or indeed and most likely, his MIC was for some reason not updated? But that still does not answer the demotion to sapper.

    By Jonathan D'Hooghe (18/01/2010)
  • We have recently been shown a photograph of William Christmas and Charles Calcraft is recorded as ‘Just before the First World War about 1912-13’. Charles Calcraft’s uniform shows the rank of corporal in this photograph.

    By David Middleton (20/01/2010)
  • We have recently identified Tommy Robinson as standing top left. He served as a Lance Corporal with the 6th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment and was awarded the Military Medal in 1919.

    By David Middleton (20/01/2016)

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