Edward Laker, the gardener killed during the Somme Campaign

Edward was born in Nuthurst, Sussex in 1895, the son of Charles and Sarah Laker. He enlisted on 20 January 1916 at Guildford, when he was a gardener, living at 2 Sandhill Cottages, Witley.  His original unit was 2/5th Battalion the Queen’s Own (Royal West Kent Regiment) but he was transferred later to the London Regiment.

The London Regiment took part in the Somme Campaign (1 July – 18 November 1916), which had several phases and battles. Wimereux was a major hospital centre and those who died in hospitals there were buried in the Communal Cemetery.  Edward died in hospital of wounds sustained in one of the later Somme battles but nothing else is known.  There is an additional inscription on Edward’s headstone added by his family; it reads “Gone from us but not forgotten never shall thy memory fade”.  Edward was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

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