9 March 1917: Pte Edmund Hewitt

Edmund Hewitt was born in Burnley in 1893

Location of Burnley in the north west of England (cc OpenStreetMap)

At the 1911 Census Edmund was one of six children, including parents and a border, living across a combined six roomed dwelling on Mount at 21 and 23 Mount Pleasant Street, Burnley. Father John was a Grocer, while his sister Nancy was a housekeeper; everyone else from ages 13 to 54 worked as weavers.  Edmund worked at  ippax and Redman. 

Burnley Lads' Club at Milntown Camp, Isle of Man, 1911(c) Lancashire County Council

He was a member of Burnley’s Lads Club and

Milton St, Burnley (c) Google Street View April 2009

Edmund got married when he was still only 19 to Caroline on 8 August 1914 after which they lived at 27 Milton Street, Burnley. His first son, also called Edmund, was born 13 March 1915. A second son, Herbert, was born 10 July 1916.

Edmund enlisted in September 1916. His First World War Medical Record gives him as 5ft 5 ¼ and weighing 8 stone (or a little under 51 kg).

He went out to France via Folkestone the week before Christmas on 14 December 1916, arriving in Etaples on the 16th.

He was killed in action on 9 March 1917, he is now buried in Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery. As we can see from his Pension Card, his wife was left with two children under the age of 2. 

Pension Card for Edmund Hewitt. Available to WFA members via their Member Login.

Wooden crosses in Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery © IWM Q 100454

A rather poignant poem, submitted by his wife to the local paper, read as follows: 


42635 Pte Edmund Hewitt, 1/5th King's Own (Ryl Lancaster) Regt.

Research by David O’Mara with additional research by Jonathan Vernon

Sources include: Burnley in the Great War, 1911 England Census and Pension Records from in The Western Front Association digital archive on Fold3 by Ancestry.