HAY-WEBB, Charles Robert Forbes

Hay-Webb, CRFCaptain, “B” Bty. 235th Bde., Royal Field Artillery.

Born

April 1895.
Third and only surviving son of Charles Robert and Lucy Kennett Hay-Webb of Hay, Broadclyst, Devon and Mooktapur, Samastipur, India. Grandson of Mr. T. Bonville Were, of Hay, Broadclyst.

Education

Penscarwick, Exmouth and
Blundell’s School: “North Close” from September 1908, when he was 13 years old, to Christmas 1911.

Service

He passed into Woolwich in January 1912 and was gazetted in July 1913 to the Royal Field Artillery. He went to India for a few months, being stationed at Mooltan. He went to the front in January 1915, was severely wounded in the second battle of Ypres on 20th April 1915 and was on medical leave for eleven months, during which time his brother Captain Allan Bonville Hay-Webb died of wounds in Gallipoli in August 1915. He returned to the front in November 1916.

The Offensive

The Salient was formed during the First Battle of Ypres in October and November 1914. The Second Battle of Ypres began in April 1915 when the Germans released poison gas into the Allied lines north of Ypres. This was the first time gas had been used by either side and the violence of the attack forced an Allied withdrawal and a shortening of the line of defence. There was little more significant activity on this front until 1917, when in the Third Battle of Ypres an offensive was mounted by Commonwealth forces to divert German attention from a weakened French front further south. The initial attempt in June to dislodge the Germans from the Messines Ridge was a complete success, but the main assault north-eastward, which began at the end of July, quickly became a dogged struggle against determined opposition and the rapidly deteriorating weather. The campaign finally came to a close in November with the capture of Passchendaele.

Death

28th December 1916, aged 22.

Burial/Commemoration

He is buried in Dickesbusch New Military Cemetery, Ypres, Belgium.

Memorial

The Dickesbusch New Military Cemetery was begun in February 1915 and was used until May 1917 by fighting units and field ambulances. The memorial site was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and is just beyond the Dikkebusch village, near to Ypres.

Research

Commonwealth War Graves Commission - www.cwgc.org
Public record Office, Nationals Archives, Kew: Medal Rolls: WO372/
“The Register of Blundell's School, Part II 1882 – 1932” (1932) MAHOOD, A.S., Ed. Entry No. 5278
“The Blundellian”, February 1917, p282
Cemeteries & Memorials in Belgium & Northern France (2004) Commonwealth War Graves Commission. 5/92

 

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