Lance/Corporal, 33921, Arthur William Bull (26) – Killed in Action

10th Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 25th December 1916

Arthur William Bull

Synopsis of Life and Military Service

Arthur was born on 1st August 1890 in Watford the youngest of eight children of Edwin Bull (an egg and butter merchant) originally from Tring, Hertfordshire (1852-1933) and Harriett Stapleton originally from Ridgmont, Berkshire (1850-1947). Arthur was educated at the Watford Grammar School.

He gained his Civil Service certificate on 24th February 1909 as a second division clerk. Arthur had temporary posts in Board of Agriculture until he was made permanent in the Department on 24th October 1911.

It appears that Arthur initially served in the Army Cyclist Corps (reg no. 9242). The Army Cyclist Corps was founded in 1915 to encompass around 14 pre-existing territorial cycling battalions, one of which Arthur may have been enlisted in. Most units of the Corps served out their time in the United Kingdom, providing replacement drafts to infantry battalions. At some point after January 1916, Arthur was transferred to the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 10th Battalion (reg. no 33921). Formed in October 1914 at Preston as part of Kitchener’s Third New Army, the Battalion mobilised for war and landed at Boulogne in August 1915. After becoming familiar with trench routine, they moved into the Hannescamps sector South-west of Arras and North of the Somme region. From that point the Battalion was engaged in various actions on the Western Front including the Battle of the Ancre (last main battle of the Somme) in November 1916.  

Death

Arthur died on the night of 24/25 December 1916 while the Batallion were in trenches in the Ferme du Bois sector. The Battalion war diary reads “24/12/16:

“At 12 noon today we commenced a slow intermittent gun fire on the enemies front line trenches – in cooperation worked the trench mortars, lewis guns, machine guns and snipers – this to prevent fraternizing. Enemies retaliation feeble – killed a NCO and wounded a Private.”

The Non-Commissioned Officer was almost certainly Arthur. He was 26 years old.  He is buried at Le Touret Military Cemetery, Richebourg-l’Avoue, Departement du Pas-deCalais, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France. The text on Arthur’s grave reads “He giveth his beloved sleep”.

Grave of Arthur William Bull – © Len – Find a Grave.

Following his death, his father Edwin was the sole Legate for his military pension and his Will which amounted to £122.

Family

Arthur William Bull was born at Watford, Hertfordshire on 1 August 1890. The following family members have been identified :-

  • Father – Edwin Bull, born c.1853 at Tring, Hertfordshire.
  • Mother – Harriet Stapleton or Bull, born c.1851 at Ridgmont, Bedfordshire.
  • Sister – Harriet Alice, born c.1877 at Lambeth, London.
  • Sister – Eleanor Jane, born c.1878 at Chelsea, London.
  • Brother – Edward John, born c.1880 at Chelsea, London.
  • Sister – Emily, born c.1882 at Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • Brother – Frederick G., born c.1884 at Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • Brother – Sydney, born c.1887 at Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • Sister – Cecilia Dorothea, born c.1888 at Watford, Hertfordshire.

Addresses

Census and school records show that Arthur lived in the same house his whole life:

  • 1891 – 4 St Albans Road, Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • 1901 – 4 St Albans Road, Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • 1903 – 4 St Albans Road, Watford, Hertfordshire.
  • 1911 – 4 St Albans Road, Watford, Hertfordshire.

Medals

Arthur William Bull was awarded the Victory, and the British War Medal for his service in the Great War.

Memorials

Arthur is remembered on the following Memorials :-

  • Watford Grammar School WW1 Memorial – Rickmansworth Road, Watford.
  • Board of Agriculture and Fisheries Memorial – Whitehall Place, London.
  • Watford Roll of Honour Book of Remembrance – Lower High Street, Watford.
Board of Agriculture and Fisheries Memorial in London – © Trevor Torkington (WMR-34897)

Links to Additional Information

Watford Grammar School WW1 Memorial © Andrew Tatham (WMR-19606)

References

Groups

  • None Identified.

Contributors:-

  • Trevor Torkington

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