Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

Although it is known that Leo Charles was living in Portsmouth in 1911, he was born not in the Borough but at Battersea in 1892. His appearance in the 1911 census in Portsmouth is almost the only evidence of his life currently established.
The 1911 census records Leo living at 49 Wisborough Road in Southsea with his mother Lydia Magdalene Howard, aged 48, born in Paddington and his grandmother, Lydia Howard, born 1841 at Swansea. At the time Leo was 18 years of age and was working as a student teacher. There is a record of a person with the same name and age as Leo in 1901 at Brunswick House, Barnet but his place of birth is given as Bradford.
It must be assumed that Leo stayed on in Portsmouth beyond 1911 as when he enlisted for service in the Great War it was with the 15th Battalion of the Hampshire Regiment which was the second of the two battalions raised in Portsmouth. After basic training the battalion landed in France in May 1916 and took part in Battles of the Somme. Leo survived just four months before losing his life in September 1916.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) list Leo Charles Denton, Lance Corporal (19226), 15th Battalion, Hampshire Regiment, died 15/09/1916. Buried at Guards' Cemetery Les Boeufs (Grave Ref: IV.N.2.). Son of Mrs. Lydia M. Howard, of 49, Wisborough Rd., Southsea, Portsmouth. Native of London.
Leo Denton is commemorated on the Cenotaph, Guildhall Square, Portsmouth. He is not listed in "The National Roll of the Great War", Section X.
Tim Backhouse
January 2015