M/274247, Private, Thomas Frederick COLLIER
Aged 28
977 M.T.Coy.,Army Service Corps
Died on Tuesday 14th May 1918

# 208367

Born in Newmarket in 9th January 1890 [Newmarket 3b:513], to Eli and Ellen COLLIER (née SHARPE) of 1 Cheveley Road, Newmarket.

1891 census...Frederick [1] was at 1 Heath Terrace, Cheveley Road, Newmarket with his father Eli [30], racing stableman, born Manchester, and his mother Ellen [26], born Hargrave, Suffolk.

1901 census...With his sister Nellie being born in Germany in 1900, it can be assumed this is why the family are not found in the UK census.

1911 census...Fred [21] was a jockey's valet living at Cotswold Villa, 10 Stanley Road, Newmarket with his widowed mother, sisters Elsie [19] a dressmaker born Newmarket; Annie [17] a milliner born Newmarket and Nellie [11] scholar born Germany and a visitor R.Keeble [19], a Leeds born jockey.

His father had died in 1908, aged 48. Fred had played football for Newmarket Town F.C., his photo here is from that team in 1913-14. Albert Langley, front row, right, was also killed in WW1. click here

Newmarket Town FC 1913-1914
courtesy of niece, Sandra Hockley

He was enlisted to Reserves on 2nd March 1916, giving his age as 26 yrs 11 months, and living at Cotswold Villa, 10 Stanley Road, Newmarket. Called to the Colours on 9th December 1916 and sent to Grove Park MT depot. He contracted pleurisy and his documentation states this did not originate from military service but was aggravated by it. It was deemed permanent and total incapacitation and he was discharged sick on 22nd June 1917. Newmarket Journal reports him being invalided out of the Army Service Corps on 22th June 1917 with pleurisy. He was awarded Silver War Badge #208367. As he never left UK and served in a war zone he was not eligible for any medals.

He died at Stanley Road, Newmarket and his death certificate gives the cause of death as pulmonary tuberculosis.

Thanks to the assistance of "In from the Cold", Fred was recognised on the Book of Remembrance on 15th December 2011, the third success of three applications for recognition for Newmarket lads who were missed out after the Great War. He had his CWGC headstone installed in 2016, down by the Woodditton Road edge of the cemetery

The Cambridge Daily News of 16th May 1918 reported: " Death of Fred Collier - Thomas Frederick Collier, jockey's valet, a well known football player in pre-war times, died on Wednesday from consumption. He had served in the Army where his complaint became very much more pronounced. The funeral may be on Saturday."

then the Cambridge Daily News reported on the funeral on 21st May -

photo: Adrian Pye

Fred is buried in Newmarket Cemetery- Ref: T.197

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