BEDDOW, Cecil Victor

Second Lieutenant, 2nd Bn., Devonshire Regiment.

Born

25th September 1896.
Second son of Dr. Josiah and Grace Mary Beddow of Pynes House, Thorverton, Devon and “Mullion” Ballard Estate, Swanage, Dorset.

Education

King’s School Worcester.
Blundell's School, as a “Day Boy” from age 15 yrs 8 months, from May 1912 to Summer 1913.

Service

He joined “F” Company Inns of Court OTC on 10th December 1914 and served with them for 107 days (during which time he was promoted to L/Cpl) until 26th March 1915. He was discharged to a commission in the Devonshire Regiment in March 1915. He was sent out the front on 20th May 1916 and had served for about 6 weeks when he was killed on the 1st Jul 1916.

Personal Details

6’1½” tall, 37½” chest. Vision 6/6. Good Health. Unmarried. British Born.

Trench Diaries

The 2nd Bn. Devonshires were part of 23rd Brigade, 8th Division. They were involved in the attack at Ovillers spur on the 1st July, advancing along Mash Valley towards Pozieres under heavy fire. The Regimental history records that onlookers from British trenches initially believed the leading waves lying in no mans land were waiting another chance to move forward, however the men were almost entirely casualties. The battalion lost 431 men in this action.

Death

1st July 1916, aged 19. Ovilliers, Mash Valley, Somme, France.

Burial/Commemoration

Grave XV. A. 5
Serre Rd Cemetery No. 2
The village of Serre is 11k north-north-east of Albert on the road out of Mailly-Maillet to Serre. In Spring 1917, the battlefields were cleared by V Corps and although Serre Road No. 2 Cemetry had been established in May 1917 with plots I and II, it was greatly enlarged after the Armistice with British Graves from other Cemeteries.

Memorial

His headstone is at 50° 05’ 45.2” N 002° 39’ 10.9”E.
The family chose to have the inscription “and they rise to their feet as he passes by gentlemen unafraid”.

After Death

Probate of will dated 23rd August 1916 granted at the PPR to Mrs. Grace Beddow (wife of Josiah) Sole executrix and universal legatee. His property amounted to the cash balance in his account and an insurance policy, total amounting to £157.17-5d.

Research

Commonwealth War Graves Commission - www.cwgc.org
The Blundellian, July 1916 p 246
The National Archives, Public Records Office, Kew WO 339/37152
“The Register of Blundell's School, Part II 1882 – 1932” (1932) MAHOOD, A.S., Ed. Entry No.5518
Cemeteries & Memorials in Belgium & Northern France (2004) Commonwealth War Graves Commission. 25/464
Field visit (JEA & GRY 28/7/2006)

 

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