Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

Despite the paucity of documentary evidence linking Alfred James to Portsmouth, there is little doubt that he qualifies as a man of the Borough who lost his life in the Great War.
The marriage register is the only record in which Alfred James can be positively identified, but that does not connect him to Portsmouth as it took place at Brighton in 1913, his wife being Rose Smith. Though it's not known when or why, the couple subsequently moved to Portsmouth where they lived at 5 Bateman's Alley, off Kent Street, Portsea. There they had two children - Alfred (b. 1914) and George (b. 1915).
For such a late arrival Alfred is unusual in being listed in the National Roll of the Great War for Portsmouth which states that he enlisted in September 1914. This seems quite likely as he joined the 14th Battalion of the Hampshire Regiment which began recruiting that month. His period of training lasted until March 1916 when his unit was drafted to the Western Front. He left behind a pregnant wife who gave birth to Alfred's second son in the third quarter of that year.
Alfred would have taken part in many battles culminating in the Battle of the Somme in which he died.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission list Private Alfred James Huggett (315044), 14th Battalion, Hampshire Regiment, died 03/09/1916, aged 35. Commemorated at the Thiepval Memorial, (Pier and Face 7 C and 7 B.). Husband of Rose Ellen Huggett, of 5, Bateman's Alley, Portsea, Portsmouth.
Alfred Huggett is also remembered on the Anglican Cathedral WW1 Memorial Cross and on the Cenotaph. He is listed in the 'National Roll of the Great War', Section X, p113.
Tim Backhouse
November 2014
Thanks to Cynthia Sherwood for additional research