Name of Gerald St. John de la Perrelle, Greenford War Memorial, Oldfield Lane South

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Ten years ago today I created the 184th post for Greenford 365. To mark the blog’s anniversary I will attempt to post a photo every day throughout 2022.

The seventeen year old commemorated on Greenford’s war memorial died on this day in 1916, one of over 100,000 British fatalities sustained during the Battle of the Somme which began two days earlier in France. His first name is recorded here as beginning with a “J” and, having looked at documents in various archives, I believe he was known to his family as “John”, although the Commonwealth War Graves Commission records him as Gerald St. John de la Perrelle. His surname appears to be misspelled on Greenford’s memorial.

Born in Lambeth, both his parents were journalists, his father was from the Channel Islands. This panel of the memorial faces Ruislip Road East where he lived at Brent Cottages with his family. It was the site of a Taylor Woodrow building for some years before being replaced by Lidl, the cottages began where Greenford Tandoori is now and ended just before the entrance to the supermarket.

John’s grave is at Ribemont Communal Cemetery Extension in France. He served with the 6th Battalion of The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment), part of “Kitchener’s Army”, and I’ve wondered if he was inspired to join up (and lie about his age) by seeing news reels at the Electric Theatre across the road from his home.

Images and text ©Albertina McNeill 2022. Please do not reproduce without permission. All rights reserved. Do not add any of these images to Pinterest or similar sites as this will be regarded as a violation of copyright.

This entry was published on July 3, 2022 at 9:39 pm. It’s filed under People, Places and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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