Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

Harold's parents, William Loader and Mary Florence Colley were married in Portsea in 1893. It is not clear how they met as William had been living in Fulham for the 1891 Census, living with his mother Mary and working as a clerk to a public company. It is quite possible that he was visiting relatives as Loader's Temperence Dining Room was well established on Broad Street at the time. However, he plainly felt little attraction towards Portsea as within a very short time after the marriage William and Mary were living in Wandsworth where all three of their children were born, Mary (b. 1895), William (b. 1896) and Harold (b. 1898).
The 1911 Census records the family as still living in Wandsworth (Pirbright Road, Southfields) but without mother Mary who had died shortly before. At the time William was working as a Cashier for the Army & Navy Stores. Within a year of the census William also died leaving the three children on their own until their aunt and uncle in Portsmouth took them in. According to family recollections this was probably Robert and Clara Barron (nee Colley) who lived in Broad Street or St. Thomas's Street.
Harold would have been just 16 years of age when the Great War broke out. As such he may have enlisted at the earliest opportunity but there is no confirmation of a date. We do know that in 1918 he was a Private (44190) in the 10th Battalion of the Worcestershire Regiment and that he was killed in action in Flanders on May 5th 1918 at the age of 19 years.
Harold C.S. Loader is not commemorated in the National Roll (Section 10) but is remembered on the WW1 memorial outside St. Thomas's Church and the Cenotaph. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission record shows that Harold was buried at Belgian Battery Corner Cemetery, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.
Tim Backhouse
December 2013

To Cynthia Sherwood for her research