Private 27647 Richard Hampton

Hampton Richard 96 800x391
Photograph of Richard Hampton's name on Panel 5 of the Kirkee Memorial before his grave in Deolali was renovated by CWGC.

Died India on Thursday, 12th December 1918, age 30.
Buried in Grave CE. L. 33. at Deolali Government Cemetery, Maharashtra State, India.

4th Bn., South Wales Borderers. 40th Brigade of 13th Division.
Formerly 21956 Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry.

Son of Mr. and Mrs. Hampton, of Dudley Port; husband of Sarah Jane Hampton, of 11, Cleton St., Dudley Port, Tipton, Staffs. Born at Dudley Port.
Born: Tipton, Enlisted: Tipton, Resident: Dudley Port.

First landed abroad post 31st December 1915.
Medal entitlement: British War Medal, Victory Medal.
Soldier's Papers at National Archives did not survive.

Not commemorated on any Tipton memorial.
Commemorated here because identified as Tipton on 'Soldiers Died in the Great War'.

Link to Commonwealth War Graves Site: www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1499202/

Genealogical Data

Birth of Richard Hampton registered September quarter 1888 in Dudley.

1901 Census.
2 Court 1 House, Coneygree Road, Tipton, Staffs.
Thomas Hampton (52, Colliery Labourer, born Tipton), his wife Emma (46, born Tipton), and their 7 children: Polly (17, Brickyard Presser, born Tipton), Nellie (15, born Dudley Port), Richard (12, born Tipton), Rebecca (10, born Tipton), Willie (7, born Tipton), Harriet (4, born Tipton), and Phoebe (2, born Tipton

1911 Census.
42 Cleton Street, Dudley Port, Tipton, Staffs.
Thomas Hampton (62, Labourer, born Tipton), his wife Emma (52, born Brierley Hill), and 3 of their 9 children: Richard (22, Furnaceman, born Dudley Port), Bill (17, Moulder, born Dudley Port), and Harriet (14, born Dudley Port).

Marriage of Richard Hampton and Sarah J. Morris registered December quarter 1911 in Dudley.
Richard and Sarah appear to have had a daughter, Mary E. Hampton, born in December quarter 1911 but who sadly died in September quarter 1913, aged 2. A son named Richard T. Hampton was born on 16th December 1913.

Personal Data

Richard Hampton enlisted around November 1914, but did not serve abroad before 1916. The only regiment shown on his Medal Roll entry is the 4th Battalion, South Wales Borderers, and his entry records 'Infantry Base Depot'. The 4th South Wales Borderers were in 40th Brigade of 13th Division which, after evacuating Gallipoli, served in Mesopotamia for the remainder of the war. Due to the lack of surviving records we do not know if Richard served in Mesopotamia.

Deolali was a hill station, about 100 miles north-east of Mumbai (previously Bombay), and was used in WW1 as a transit camp, prisoner of war camp, and hospital facility. Men on their way home from the Mesopotamia front in particular would transit through Deolali, awaiting their call to the troop ship to return them back to England.

Because of the lack of records, we cannot tell if Richard Hampton was in transit from Mesopotamia to England, had been evacuated to one of the hospitals in Deolali (34th Welsh and the 44th General Hospitals), was a permanent member of the Infantry Base Depot, or even a Guard in the Prisoner of War Camp.

After Richard's death, his outstanding army pay and allowances were paid to his wife Sarah Jane in October 1919; this amounted to £6/4/9d (6 pounds, 4 shillings and 9 pence). His War Gratuity was calculated at £19/0/0d but an unidentified charge of £16/6/6d reduced this to £2/3/6d (2 pounds, 3 shillings and 6 pence); this was also paid to Sarah Jane in October 1919. The amount of War Gratuity and his date of death suggest that Richard enlisted in November 1914.

Action resulting in his death

It is not known if Richard's presence in Deolali was because of illness, injury or being a permanent member of the Base Depot. 'Soldiers Died in the Great War' records that Richard 'Died' (as opposed to' Died of Wounds' or 'Killed in Action'), this means that his death was due to illness or accident, not due to military activity. If Richard had served in Mesopotamia then malaria was wide-spread.

Richard was buried on 13th December 1918 in what is now Deolali Government Cemetery. For some considerable time the cemeteries in Maharashtra State were not capable of being maintained by the CWGC and were in effect abandoned. Those buried there were commemorated on the Kirkee Memorial, Richard's name was carved on Panel 5 as pictured below. In the past few years the CWGC has undertaken significant renovation of the cemeteries in Maharashtra State, and they are once again in a fit and proper state.

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