Alexander Clapp

Alexander Clapp at Reigate Station, October 1914

Title: Alexander Clapp at Reigate Station, October 1914
Description: Copyright June Adams by-nc

Family story contributed by June Adams

Alexander Clapp was my grandfather. He was born in 1881 in Compton Chamberlayne, Wiltshire.  He moved Surrey before the First World War, with the family living in the Bletchingley, Godstone, Reigate, Merstham area long after the war ended.

He was a regular soldier, having previously served with 2nd Battalion, Wiltshire Regiment (according to his attestation papers from the First World War). He enlisted with the 5th Battalion, The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) in 1910 and continue to serve with them into the war period.

Postcard sent to Lily Clapp, from Alexander, following his departure from Reigate train station in October 1914

Title: Postcard sent to Lily Clapp, from Alexander, following his departure from Reigate train station in October 1914
Description: Copyright June Adams by-nc

He left for the war fronts in October 1914, departing from Reigate train station. Unfortunately, his wife gave birth to days after he left, and the baby sadly died only five months later. Alexander never met his child. Alexander fought in India, Mesopotamia and Afghanistan from 1915 to 1918. The family has a beautiful photograph of him with his fellow soldiers taken in Hyderabad (date unknown). He received two “oak leaves” which signify that he was mentioned in despatches in the London Gazette 1918.

Alexander Clapp in Hyderabad (back row, fourth from left; date unknown)

Title: Alexander Clapp in Hyderabad (back row, fourth from left; date unknown)
Description: Copyright June Adams by-nc

He was wounded causing 30% disability to his hips, and was awarded a pension of 9s.9d. plus a bonus of 7s.3d. for his five children.

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