BITTEN, Lawrence 'Daniel'


No.27457, Lance Corporal, Daniel BITTEN
Aged 21


2nd Battalion, Princess Charlotte of Wales' (Royal Berkshire) Regiment
formerly 13331, Bedfordshire Regiment
Killed in Action between 23rd-28th October 1916


Lawrence Daniel Bitten was born in Cowlinge in 1895 (Risbridge Q2-1895 4A:735), baptised in Cowlinge on 19th May 1895, son of Charles Arthur and Agnes Elizabeth Bitten (née RANSOME).


1901 census...Aged 6, (Lawrence) was at Lambfair Green with his father Charles Arthur BITTEN [39] farm labourer; his mother Agnes [37]; brothers Harry [11], George [9],Walter [7] and twins Jack and Fred [11 months] and sister Ellen [3]. All are recorded as born in Cowlinge.

1911 census...Aged 16 (Lawrence), a gardener's labourer, he was at Lambfair Green with his parents; brothers George, Walter, (both farm labourers), twins Fred and Jack; sisters Ellen, Edith[7] and Hilda [5] born in Cowlinge. His mother had borne 10 children but one had died.

Four brothers died in the great War, Arthur (known as Harry), Lawrence (known as Daniel) Charles (known as Walter) and George William, all are commemorated on this memorial. All of them have their given name order changed throughout their lives in civilian or Army records.


He enlisted in Hertford in September 1914.
The war diary has many pages devoted to the period 23rd to 28th October, far too much for this project, but in essence the 2nd Berkshire were trying to advance towards Transloy. Recording the day to day casualties might have seemed to be one task too many under the circumstances, but only three men have no exact date recorded

CWGC records show 61 of the 2nd Berkshires killed in that period.


The rough area of their endeavours

The Bury Free Press of 2nd December 1916 reported
COWLINGE MEN IN THE CASUALTY LISTS

We regret to state that several casualties to Cowlinge lads have recently been recorded.
Prvt Dan Bitten, son of Mr.C.Bitten, Lambfair Green, Cambridge, is among the killed. This is the second of this family to fall for King and Country, another brother being accidentally drowned in Mesopotamia a few months ago
Rifn.Chas. Starling, Rifle Brigade, contracting pneumonia at Salonica, was being conveyed in hospital ship to Malta, but died before reaching his destination. He has two other brothers at the front. The greatest sympathy is felt for both families, who are old time parishioners of Cowlinge
News is also to hand that Prvt A.Wiltshire, another Cowlinge lad, and son in law of Mrs Foreman, Mill Road, is also killed in action.



The CWGC headstone in Cowlinge commemorating all four brothers




Daniel Bitten is commemorated on the Thiepval memorial, pier and face 11D
All four brothers are commemorated on a special memorial in Cowlinge (St Margaret) Churchyard, south of church

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details


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