PAGE, Charles Henry

No.18879, Private, Charles Henry PAGE
Aged 24

12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Saturday, 24th November 1917

The order of his forenames changes regularly.

Henry Charles Page was born in Coddenham nr Ipswich in 1893 (Bosmere Q1-1893 4A:856), son of Henry and Priscilla PAGE (née FINBOW).

1901 census...Aged 8, Henry Charles was at Mill Lane, Coddenham with his father Henry PAGE [50] horseman, born Crowfield; his mother Priscilla [46] born Gosbeck, Suffolk; brothers Frank [23] farm labourer and Fred William [4]; sister Kate [13]; grandfather William PAGE [87]. All except his parents were born in Coddenham.

1911 census...Aged 18, farm labourer, he was in Coddenham with his parents and brother Frederick (groom). Of 10 children, 3 had died.
He married Margaret THURLOW (Bosmere Q4-1911 4A:2189). They appear to have had two sons, Frederick (1912) and Charles (1914). School registers show an Alfred THURLOW (1911 M Quarter in BOSMERE Volume 04A Page 975) admitted to Ingham School, guardian Margaret PAGE, also Frederick Page born 16-7-1912 and Charles PAGE born 9-12-1914. They were living at Timworth Old Farm. This address was still theirs on his pension card

He enlisted in Bury St Edmunds. Records exist of a Charles Page, aged 21 8/12 born Coddenham, enlisting in Suffolk Regt (No.12583) in August 1914 but being discharged due to defective vision 76 days later. It is possible this was the same man.
On 23rd November 1917 the 40th Division,(of which 12th Suffolks were part) attacked Bourlon Wood and after 4 1/2 hours hard fighting with the assistance of tanks, they took the whole wood and the village. They were unable to hold it however, so the next day battalion HQ was moved into a quarry just north of the main Cambrai road. After a hard day's fighting, two companies of the 12th Suffolks penetrated to the north of Bourlon but the village remained in German hands. Casualties in these actions were 150.

CWGC put the deaths at:- 23rd November - ten ; 24th November - twenty two. Only two have an identified grave.

The Bury Free Press of 29th December 1917 reported:-

It is with deep regret that we learn that Prvt Charles Henry Page, whose home is at Old Farm, Timworth, has met his death in action on the Western Front. Prvt Page was a gallant Englishman, of whom it could be truthfully said he nobly did his duty. In the very first month of the war he answered his country's call for men. His military career has been a most eventful one, for no less than three times did he embark from his native land for foreign soil. Following his enlistment in August 1914, he was discharged two months later, and shortly afterwards found himself in Salonica. He remained on Greek territory eighteen months before being invalided home to England, suffering from fever. After recovering he was sent abroad again, this time to France. He again contracted fever, and returned to England. In due course he was reported once more fit for duty, and was duly dispatched again to France, where he served up to the time he was killed in action on November 24th last. Prvt Page leaves a widow to mourn for him, and by his death three little ones have been rendered fatherless, and the utmost sympathy has been elicited in the village for those bereaved. His commanding officer and also a mate, have written to Mrs. Page, informing her that her husband was killed instantaneously, and suffered no pain. The letters also stated that his loss would be greatly felt his comrades

Charles Page is commemorated on the Cambrai Memorial, panel 4
and Timworth memorial.

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