Serjeant 2720 Alfred Round

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Died of Wounds on Friday, 21st April 1916, age 21.
Buried in Grave V. B. 7. at Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas De Calais, France.

1st/6th Bn., South Staffordshire Regiment. 137th Brigade of 46th Division.

Son of Mr and Mrs Alfred Round, of 60 Waterloo Street, Tipton, Staffs.
Born: Tipton, Enlisted: Wolverhampton, Resident: Tipton.

First landed France & Flanders, 5th March 1915.
Medal entitlement: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.
Soldier's Papers at National Archives did not survive.

Commemorated on the Tipton Library, and Dudley Grammar School memorials.
Commemorated here because he appears on a Tipton memorial.

Link to Commonwealth War Graves Site: www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/505371/

Genealogical Data

Birth of Alfred Round registered September Quarter 1894 in Dudley.

1901 Census
51 Waterloo Street, Tipton, Staffs.
Alfred Round (41, Bricklayer, born Tipton), his wife Mary Jane (40, born Tipton), and their 4 children: Ernest (15, Bricklayer's Labourer, born Tipton), Edgar (13, Scholar, born Tipton), Alfred (6, Scholar, born Tipton), and Oliver (2, born Tipton).

1911 Census
60 Waterloo Street, Tipton, Staffs.
Alfred Round (51, Bricklayer, born Tipton), his wife Mary Jane (50, born Tipton), and 2 of their 4 surviving children of 5: Alfred (16, School, born Tipton), and Oliver (12, School, born Tipton).

Personal Data

Alfred Round was a former pupil of Dudley Grammar School, and was a teacher at Dudley Port School.

After Alfred's death his outstanding army pay and allowances was paid to his father, also Alfred, in June 1916; this amounted to £13/0/5d (13 pounds and 5 pence). His father also received Alfred's War Gratuity of £10/0/0d in September 1919.

Action resulting in his death

Alfred arrived in France on 5th March 1915, and would have seen action initially in Belgium. In October 1915 the 1/6th South Staffs, as part of 46th (North Midlands) Division, moved to French Flanders. Here they lost heavily at the Hohenzollern Redoubt on 13th October 1915, as a later phase of the Battle of Loos. In December and January, the 46th (North Midlands) Division were in Egypt before being brought back to France where they were posted near Vimy Ridge, just north of Arras.

Alfred was wounded in action on 8th April 1916, suffering a bullet wound to the head. At this time, the 1/6th South Staffs were holding trenches at Neuville St. Vaast, north of Arras in the area of Vimy Ridge. The trenches had just been captured from the Germans, who were determined to regain possession.

Alfred was transported back through the Casualty Evacuation system to Etaples where many hospitals were situated; this is on the coast about 15 miles south of Boulogne. Alfred's parents were informed of his serious condition and his father arrived in France on 12th April, remaining there until his son died on 21st April at No. 20 General Hospital at Camiers. His father was also present at his son's funeral in Etaples Military Cemetery, over 10,000 service personnel are buried there most of whom died in the Etaples hospitals.

Newspaper Cuttings

Tipton Herald 5th September 1914
Mr Alfred Round, of Dudley Port School, had intimated his intention of enlisting, and would probably be joining his regiment on Friday. He was the first of the teaching staff to promise to go to the front. The Finance Committee recommended that half the salary be paid Mr Round and that all unmarried teachers joining the army be similarly treated, and that their absence be treated towards service.

Tipton Herald 29th April 1916
The first Tipton teacher to die for his country in the Great War is Sergeant Alfred Round, the third son of Mr Alfred Round, builder, of 60 Waterloo Street, Tipton. Sergeant Round, who was only 25 years of age, was educated at Dudley Grammar School, and was a teacher at Dudley Port Council School. He died in a hospital in France from a gunshot wound in the head.
Sergeant Round, who had not previously been a Territorial, joined the 1/6th South Staffs Territorial Battalion on August 30th, shortly after the war broke out. He was one of 15 old Grammar School boys who joined at the same time, and several of whom are killed. He was in training up to January 6th 1915, when he proceeded to France (Editor's note: actually 5th March 1915). He had not been home on leave since going abroad, and to show with what avidity he shouldered his military duties, he was made a Sergeant within a year of becoming a soldier.
He received a terrible gunshot wound in the head on Saturday 8th April, and on the 9th was removed to a hospital in France. He managed to survive his injuries for nearly a fortnight, for he passed away on Good Friday, 21st inst. After the gallant young soldier had been wounded, his parents were communicated with, and his father, Mr Alfred Round, started for France on Tuesday, April 11th, arriving at the hospital on the following day. The funeral of the deceased took place in the cemetery near the hospital on the Saturday, and the bereaved father started for home on the Sunday. Mr Round, senior, has nothing but admiration for the splendid way in which relatives of wounded soldiers are treated on going to the hospital. The burial ground is made into a lovely spot, the ladies of the town keeping the graves fresh with flowers. After the war, many a pilgrimage will be made there by bereaved relatives.