Harold Christopher Gaisford 1891- 1918
Research by John Birch, Wrecclesham War Memorial World War I 1914-1919 (Privately printed). Typed up (with permission) by Josh Waldron.
Sapper Harold Christopher Gaisford was born in Warminster, Wilts, in 1891, the son of Joseph and Rose Gaisford. In the 1891 Census Harold was the youngest member of the family which included six children, four boys and two girls. In the 1901 Census Joseph is living in 39 George Street, Warminster, with his six children. Harold is by this time 10 years of age. His father who had been a carpenter in 1891 is by 1901 describing himself as a builder. Joseph is shown as being a widower, his wife Rose having died in 1899.
In 1901 Joseph was remarried at Christ Church, Epsom, to a lady called Emily Perrin Parker, but his second marriage did not last long as he died at Woodcote, Wrecclesham, on 29th October 1910. The 1911 Census shows Harold Christopher living with his stepmother Emily at Woodcote. Emily is aged 41 and is described as an Elementary School teacher. Harold is aged 20 and is working as a carpenter.
On 14th January 1915 Harold enlisted in the Royal Engineers as a Carpenter, Service Number 65029. He was posted to the 130th Field Company of the Royal Engineers and on 27th September 1915 he was to join the British Expeditionary Force in France. In July 1916 he sustained a shell wound to his leg. He was ultimately killed in action on 10th April 1918. A memorial to his life is recorded at the Ploegsteert Memorial, Comines Warneton, Hainaut, Belgium, on Panel 1. The Ploegsteert Memorial to the Missing (also known as Hyde Park Corner and referred to colloquially as “Plug Street”) is a Commonwealth War Graves Commission memorial for the missing soldiers of World War I who fought in the immediate area of the Ypres Salient on the Western Front.