More men fall in 18th week

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One hundred years ago, in the 18th week of World War 1, reports were coming in thick and fast of deaths of men from our area.

A Spalding family were experiencing acute bereavement, following the deaths of two relatives.

Mrs Carter of New Bond Street was told that her son, Pte. W. Ringham had died of wounds received in action.

Only a few days later, Mrs Carter’s daughter, Mrs Kendall, was given the news that her husband, George, had also died of wounds received during battle.

Both men lived in the same house on New Bond Street in the town, and they were reservists called up on the outbreak of the war.

Pte. Kendall had only sent a letter home two weeks prior to his death, informing his family that he had been wounded.

There was extra sadness as it was revealed that his wife had not only been left a widow, but she was also expecting a child.

Corporal B. Kingston, of the 1st Rifle Brigade, was killed in action in November.

He was from Sutton Bridge and had previously served in India, after enlisting in the Rifles in 1903.

On his return from India, Corporal Kingston was placed on reserve and appointed clerk in the head office of the Hertfordshire Territorials, a position which he occupied until, on the outbreak of the war, he was called up to take his place in the Expeditionary Force.

Many reports were also coming in that men from South Holland were wounded.

Pte. W. Hovell from Long Sutton, was fighting with the 1st Lincolns and wrote home from the Allied Forces’ Base Hospital.

He said: “I have had a very hard time of it this last five weeks. I was nearly a goner twice. I had inflammation, and then a wound in my back.

“I can tell you I am a very lucky chap to be where I am today, but I got the turn for the better a couple of days ago.

“As soon as I can walk at all they are sending me to England to regain my strength, so as I can go out and give the Germans a bit more of Lincolnshire.

“I hope you will excuse this scribble, as my back has affected my right arm, so I have not too much strength in it yet.

“Well, never mind, it’s better than none at all.”