Bryant, Horace Edwin

Horace was born in Ashwell the only son of Joseph and Shirley (nee Pickett) Bryant of Station Rd.  He was a pupil at the Merchant Taylors School in Ashwell.

Horace enlisted at Peterborough and was almost immediately sent to France. He served with the Royal Horse Artillery, Regimental Number 67928.  He fought in the Western European Theatre of War, France and Flanders and was killed in action on 1 September 1914 at the Battle of Mons.

Following very serious losses at Affair of Nery on 1 September 1914, ‘L’ Battery was withdrawn from action.

He is buried at the Nery Communal Cemetery, Departement de l’Oise, Picardie, France and commemorated on a special Memorial at Verberie French National Cemetery. He is not commemorated on any Ashwell Memorial.

Horace was awarded the 1914 Star, the Victory Medal and the British War Medal.

Before enlisting in the army he was a bricklayer’s labourer.  At the time of his death his parents were living in New Cottages, Stratton Park Farm, Biggleswade.

From the Royston Crow 1914 December:  On the 11th December a handsomely framed engraved Roll of Honour of Old Boys of the Merchant Taylors School serving their King and Country in the war was unveiled. ‘This excited among the Scholars much interest and a patriotic spirit and many were the glances at the list of names some of whom were the Fathers and Brothers of the Boys. They numbered 64 boys in all who had volunteered for active service. Two on the list – Horace Bryant and Percy Reeve – had died the death of heroes in trying to save England from the ravages of the “Cultural Hun” being killed in action in the retreat from Mons.’ Only a week later there were more additions to the list. The new volunteers were Frederick Pack, Clem Pack, Horace Reeve, Jack Harman, John Winter and Albert Amtman. However there was also news of another old boy, George Waldock, that had been killed in action but there was no further information. There are two members of the Waldock family on the War memorial, Harry W.G. Waldock and Herbert George Waldock either could have been familiarly called ‘George’

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