Forgotten first world war hero commemorated

A CEREMONY to commemorate a First World War hero who gave his life, but was omitted from a memorial, has been held in Essex.

Private Arthur Cyril Garrett, who was from Takeley, near Stansted Airport, of the 5th Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment died during the second battle of Umbrella Hill on July 27, 1917. It was during this battle that he was killed and earned his Military Medal.

Despite his bravery, Pte Garrett’s name has not appeared on any war memorial in the UK.

Chairman of the Takeley local history society Trevor Allen has spent the last three years researching the omission.

He said: “After research we discovered his name does not appear on the Takeley war memorial or any other in the UK. He does, however, appear on the war memorial in Jerusalem.”

Further research showed that Pte Garrett lived at Jacks Farm on Jacks Green in Takeley with his mother and father. He joined the army in 1914 before the war started. Assigned to the 2nd battalion he was sent to the western front before returning home injured. He returned to active service as part of the 5th battalion and was posted to Palestine.

“Twelve bodies, including that of Pte Garrett, from the second battle of Umbrella Hill were never recovered and therefore there are no marked graves for any of them,” said Mr Allen. “We believe he died during hand-to-hand combat in the Turkish trenches.”

Most Read

Two members of Pte Garrett’s family were in attendance at the ceremony as well as the Royal British Legion and the Bugles.

“The men who gave their lives must not be forgotten,” added Mr Allen.