DEAN, Sidney John

45993, Private, Sidney John DEAN
Aged 36

7th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Wednesday, 27th March 1918

Sidney John DEAN was born in Stow cum Quy ( Chesterton Q2-1882 3B:498) son of George and Sarah DEAN (née PLEDGER).

1891 census...Aged 9 he was at The Swan, 5 Cage Hill, Stow cum Quy with his father George DEAN [40] publican/farmer; mother Sarah [32] born Wickhambrook; brother Walter [6]; sisters Florence [5] and Rose [3]. All except his mother were born in Stow cum Quy.

1901 census...Aged 19, a carpenter's labourer, he was at High Street, Stow cum Quy with his widower grandfather, John DEAN [79] estate labourer; housekeeper widow Eliza ISON[69]. His parents were still at The Swan Inn with brothers Walter (carter on farm) and George [7], sisters Florence, Rosa and Annie M [1]. The new siblings born in Stow cum Quy.

1911 census...Aged 29, a farm labourer, he was at The White Swan Inn with his parents, brothers Walter and George, both assisting father on farm; sister Florence (assisting in inn) and Annie (scholar)

He married Gertrude POULTER [15-2-1875] in Q2-1911, lving near the Church, Quy. His father died in 1916.

He enlisted in Newmarket.
On the 26th March 1918 the 7th Suffolks were taking up defensive positions in the Albert bridgehead that they had themselves prepared 2 years earlier. With their backs to the wall, they were striving, without artillery support, bombs, rifle grenades or trench mortars, to stem the onrush of the overwhelming numbers of the enemy. They had left billets in Albert and by 15:00 had dug themselves in along the railway, their left resting on Albert station and the right 300 yards south of the Albert-Amiens road. At 16:30 they saw waves of Germans advancing towards Albert and around 17:30 the enemy were seen marching along the Albert-Millencourt road. Here the Suffolks, with a Lewis gun, inflicted heavy casualties but the gun was soon put out of action. Attacks along the railway line were twice driven off . At 22.20 the Germans attacked in great strength and the bridgehead was lost.. At 23:15 a counter attack was attempted by the remnants of 2 Platoon together with some from the 5th Northants. Shortage of ammunition doomed this to failure. The line was then withdrawn 300 yards and stabilised. By the time the battalion was relieved on the 28th and the roll taken, they had suffered 256 casualties, one platoon had been reduced to three men. Unusually for a war diary, all the other rank casualties, killed and wounded, are named in each Company, but Sidney's name does not appear, unless he is entered as 45913 Dean E. of "D" Company. The action was such that date of death could not accurately be recorded. He fell with Charles Hunt click here

The family monument in Stow cum Quy

photo: Rodney Gibson

Sidney Dean is commemorated on the Pozières memorial, panel 25
and on his parents' headstone in Quy

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