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Arthur Edwin Henley

CWC Grave of Hubert Vincent Viner

Arthur Edwin Henley was born in 1896 in Netherton, Fyfield, the son of Walter Henley (b Fyfield 1863) and his wife Sarah Elizabeth Carter (b Long Wittingham 1872). The Henley family had lived in Fyfield and area since 1859 and had worked on the land in various capacities for generations, moving to cottages when employment changed, within Netherton, Fyfield, Fyfield Wick and Southmoor.

In 1881 Walter is 18 years old and is living with his family, near Wood House Farm, Digging Lane, Fyfield where he is an Agricultural Labourer whilst in 1881 Long Wittingham, Sarah is 8 is living with her family and still at school. It is not known how Walter and Sarah met, but assumed that this may have been at Abingdon Market or the Fair about ten years later.

In 1891 census Walter Henley and Alice had started life together, having married probably in Long Wittingham ( Wallingford District) in 1890, and had settled into a cottage at 13 Goal Yard, West of Bridge Street, Abingdon, where Walter is employed as a Coachman. In 1891 their first child Walter Frederick was born in Abingdon. Within the following 10 years (1901) the couple had moved to Walter’s home village of Fyfield, had had another four children, and were living in a cottage adjoining Wood House Farm, Digging Lane, Fyfield. Arthur Edwin Henley was born in 1896 in Fyfield, and by the time he was 5 his sister Alice Maud had been born and also a baby brother Albert Henry aged 1.

In 1905 Walter’s father Henry died in Fyfield, leaving his mother Jane a widow living alone in Fyfield. By the 1911 Walter and Sarah have moved, and the family are now living in the region of Southmoor Farm, Southmoor, possibly Southmoor Cottage*,  Faringdon Road, where Walter is a Farm Labourer. Arthur, now 15 is employed as a ploughboy on a local farm, and sister Alice 13, is still at school with brother Albert 11 and sister Elizabeth aged 3.

*Latton Close, Sandy Lane and Stone Hill Lane were not yet built.

poppy with leaf

By 1914, war has been declared and by 1915 Arthur had joined the Royal Berkshire Regiment as a Private Service No: 21599 and was fighting in Belgium. Private Arthur Edwin Henley was killed in the Battle of Loos* on the 6th October 1915. He was aged 20. He is remembered by a War grave Commission with Royal Berkshire crest in the NW Corner, St John The Baptist Church, Kingston Bagpuize and on a plaque in the church. Born Netherton, son of Mr & Mrs Walter Henley, of Southmoor. 8/13081 Private/ A.E.HENLEY/ Royal Berkshire Regiment/ 6th October 1915 age 20.

Arthur is also remembered on the Memorial at St Mary's Church, Longworth.

See CWG certificate etc.

Battle Of Loos at Loos-En-Gohelle took place on 05/10/1915. It is believed that Arthur was badly injured then and died of his wounds the next day.

Further research

Arthur's sister Alice Maud Henley married Leonard Thomas Farmer (1896–1963) in September 1919 and their son Thomas Arthur FARMER was born on 30th June 1920 and baptised at St John the Baptist Church, Kingston Bagpuize, Berkshire, England.

Thomas was also to die in WW2 on 11th September 1944 in Belgium. See Thomas Arthur Farmer's bio here.

See Wikipedia Battle of Loos

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