CROMIE, Henry Julian

Captain 3rd Bn., attd. 1st Bn., Hampshire Regiment.

Born

29th October 1896 at Dar-el-Baida, Morocco.
Younger son of Son of Joan Angela Cromie (nee Yonge) of 1, The Mead, Ringwood, Hants, and the late Capt. Charles Francis Cromie (1st Bn., Hampshire Regiment) formerly British Vice Consul, Dar-al-Baida, Morocco.

Education

Blundell's School, “Day Boy”, from age of 9, May 1904 – Christmas 1907.
Dover College, Dover to 10th Aug 1911 where he was in the school OTC.

Career

School Master at Down College, Alresfords, Hants.

Service

He attested on 20th August 1914 and went to France on 2nd February 1915 joining 1st Hants Regiment in the field. He was admitted to District hospital No 4 1BB in Rouen, France with “Slight sickness” on 20th February 1915 and his mother informed by telegram. He rejoined 1st Hants Regt. In the field on 6th May 1915. On the 15th January 1916 he was admitted to 110 FA with “myalgia” but rejoined his battalion on 25th January 1916. He went to the 4th Army school in the field on 27th may 1916 and was appointed to be temporary Captain from 29th April to 5th May inclusive. He was placed Officer Commanding “A” Company 1st Bn. on 2nd July 1916.

Trench Diaries

The 1st Bn., Hampshire Regiment were part of 11th Brigade, 4th Division. On 1st July the battalion advanced at 7.40am in attack on Redan Ridge. They were relieved and sent to Mailly-Maillet and then on to Bertrancourt. Then on the 4th July they went to Bertrancourt and on 10th July sent back to frontline trenches at Beaumont Hamel. The regiment had suffered very heavy losses and so were sent by train to the Ypres sector from Doullens on 23rd July. They returned to the Somme at the end of September 1916. The brigade formed reserve lines east of Guillemont on 17th October and support lines at Lesboeufs on 19th October. They moved to front lines (Frosty Trench) on the 22nd October and at 2.30pm on the 23rd July, A and C companies let an attack on Boritska Trench. Immediately they came under very heavy machine gun and rifle fire. The right flank eventually entered German front line trenches but after holding for a few hours were forced to retire. Casualties numbered 202 officers and men.

Death

23rd October 1916, aged 20, near Lesboeufs, Somme.

After Death

He died intestate as a bachelor without father so probate was grated to Joanna Angelea Cromie (Widow), the natural and lawful mother, only next of kin; his assets amounted to £156-0-0.

Burial/Commemoration

Captain Cromie has no known grave so is commemorated on Theipval Memorial, Theipval, Somme, Pillar 7, faces B & C.

Memorial

Theipval Memorial is on the D73, off the Main Bapaume to Albert (D929)
The Memorial, 150 feet high, was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and can be seen from many of the battle sites in the surrounding area. It has sixteen piers on whose faces the names of all the men who have no known grave, is inscribed. An excellent interpretation centre has been built nearby with research facilities and an “on line” memorial to the missing which contains much valuable information.

Research

Commonwealth War Graves Commission - www.cwgc.org
The National Archives, Public Records Office, Kew: WO 339/76016
“The Register of Blundell's School, Part II 1882 – 1932” (1932) MAHOOD, A.S., Ed. Entry No. 5109
“Cemeteries & Memorials in Belgium & Northern France” (2004) Commonwealth War Graves Commission. 25/490
“British battalions on the Somme” WESTLAKE, R. (2004) Pen and Sword
Field visit (JEA & GRY 28/7/2006)

 

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