Saturday, 24 August 2019

Edward Loxdale (1887–1916) – British soldier poet

With grateful thanks to Andrew Mackay for his kind help which allowed me to discover another ‘Forgotten’ soldier poet of the First World War.

Edward Loxdale was born in Acton, Middlesex, UK (now within the London Borough of Ealing) in 1887.   His parents were Edward Augustus Loxdale, a railway clerk, and his wife, Elizabeth Anne, nee Warren. Edward had the following siblings: Annie, b. 1884, who became a school teacher, Elizabeth, b. 1890, Andrew, b. 1894, Serena, b. 1897 and John, b. 1899.

Edward’s mother, Elizabeth Ann, died in December1904 and his father, Edward Augustus, married Sarah Ann Clouter in 1908.

Edward became a clerk and then a civil servant. During the First World War he joined the London Regiment - 15th (County of London) Battalion (P.W.O. Civil Servants) – as a Private, No. 2363.  Posted to the Western Front, Edward was killed on 1st January 1916 in the Hohenzollern Redoubt, near Auchy-les-Mines in France.  He was buried in Quarry Cemetery, Vermelles, France – Grave Reference C. 14.

Edward Loxdale is also remembered on a memorial in the United Reformed Church, Junction of Chapel Road & Hanworth Road in Hounslow, Middlesex.

“The Day before Short Leave” by Edward Loxdale

The great guns are firing before and around,
And the sinister rifles are talking;
But changed is their yell for a spell to the sound
Of the feet that the pavements are walking.
Far, far  from the trenches my pleasant thoughts roa,
Forgotten this region of ditches;
I am back once again in the town that’s my howm,
‘Mid her splendours, and glories and riches.

(From “A souvenir of a Soldier” p. 21.)

Find my Past
“A Souvenir of a Soldier: Impressions of Active Service in France and Belgium during the Great War” Private Edward Loxdale (IMCC Ltd. First printed in 1916 by Hazell, Watson & Viney Ltd, London and published by Edward's Office Companions)

“Civil Service Rifles in the Great War: 'All Bloody Gentlemen' “ by Jill Knight

Photograph of Edward from "A Souvenir of a Soldier".