1914-18          Rayne War Memorial       1939-45

In Memory of
Private 1235
9th Bn., Essex Regiment
who died on Monday,3rd July 1916.
Age 26.


War Graves Commission

Casualty Details      191139  


Date of birth 11th September 1890.

Son of George and Julia Hance, of The Gore, Rayne. George was a carpenter. Edward was one of a family of nine.

Samuel, George and Edward were the oldest - all three killed in the war; Lily, Frederick, Willie, Leonard, Herbert and Daisy were the youngest.

Edward went to Rayne School, being admitted on 14th December 1896, leaving on 12th October 1903 to work on a farm.

In 1911, he was living with the Barnard family (who were bakers, in The Street) and his occupation was a journeyman baker.

Edward enlisted in Chelmsford. Went to France 30th May 1915.

Panel Number:

GORDON DUMP CEMETERY, OVILLERS-LA BOISSELLE, Somme, France VI. E. 4. Gordon Dump Cemetery is 2 kilometres north-east of Albert, on the right hand side of D929 Albert-Bapaume. At Y junction (102nd Infantry Brigade Memorial) nearby the Routiers restaurant, turn right onto D20 and follow through Ovillers/La Boisselle. After 2 kilometres the Cemetery is signposted onto a 300 metre grass track.

On the 1st July, 1916, Ovillers was attacked by the 8th Division and La Boisselle by the 34th; but the villages were not captured, although both Divisions gained ground. La Boisselle was taken by the 19th (Western) Division on the 3rd and 4th July. Ovillers was attacked again by the 12th (Eastern), 25th and 32nd Divisions, and on the 17th July, it was taken by the 48th (South Midland) Division.

The two villages were lost in March, 1918, and retaken in the following August. Plot I of the Cemetery was made by fighting units after the 10th July, 1916, and closed in September. It contained the graves of 95 soldiers, mainly Australian. It was called variously Gordon (or Gordon's) Dump Cemetery or Sausage Valley Cemetery (from the name given to the broad, shallow valley that runs down from it to Becourt). The remainder of the cemetery was formed after the Armistice by the concentration of graves from the battlefields immediately surrounding the cemetery. The great majority of the soldiers thus reburied fell in July, 1916.

There are now over 1,500, 1914-18 war casualties commemorated in this site. Of these, over half are unidentified and special memorials are erected to 33 soldiers from the United Kingdom and one from Australia, known or believed to be buried among them. The wooden memorial of the 10th Lancashire Fusiliers to their officers and men who fell on the 7th July, 1916, in the capture of Quadrangle Trench, was removed to this cemetery.

The cemetery covers an area of 4,753 square metres, and it is bounded on two sides by a rubble wall. There are, in the neighbourhood of this cemetery, the following Memorials:-

• The La Boisselle Crater, 91 metres across and 27 metres deep, which was exploded on the 1st July, 1916, and retaken by the 8th Royal Berks on the 24th August, 1918. It is about 914 metres to the South-West.

• The 19th Division Memorial, a blue granite cross in the village of La Boisselle.

• The 34th Division Memorial, at the North-East end of La Boisselle, on the site of Divisional Headquarters in 1916. It is a white stone obelisk surmounted by a bronze figure of Victory.

• The Tyneside (102nd and 103rd Brigades) Memorial, a granite seat with a bronze-panelled back, at the junction of the roads from Albert to Contalmaison and to Bapaume, in front of the destroyed Communal Cemetery. .