Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

Home for the Woods family in the 1880s and 1890s was Petersfield, Hampshire where Frederick William was born; they moved to Portsmouth towards the end of that period.
His father Henry had been born at Wisboro Green, Sussex in 1853, a younger child of William and Jane Woods. William was described in the 1871 census as a carpenter, a trade that was to influence Henry's choice of career. The same census recorded Henry and his wife Rosina living in the same household as his parents and siblings. The two had been married at Chichester the previous year when Henry was 17 years old and Rosina Maria (nee Burrows) seven years his senior.
Henry and Rosina moved to Petersfield in time for the 1881 census which saw Henry branching out as a joiner and builder in his own right. They had three children, Walter (b. 1874), Rosina J. (b. 1879) and Frederick William (b. 1881). Ten years later Henry was describing himself as a Master Builder and his son Walter as an Architecture Pupil, but Henry must have seen better prospects for his business elsewhere as he moved his family to 24 Lombard Street, Old Portsmouth, as recorded in the 1901 census.
That census also shows Henry as a Builder, Manager, Rosina visiting friends in Petersfield and Rosina J. as a Builder's Clerk. Frederick William does not appear to be in the UK at the time. 1911 saw the emergence of 'Woods & Co.' Builders with Rosina described as a Builder and Decorator and Henry as Manager. Their office and home was at 78 St. Vincent Street, off King Street, Southsea.
In the meantime Frederick William had married Ethel Annie Aldridge Nelder (b. 1881) at Portsmouth in 1907 and together they had set up home at 97 Orchard Road, Southsea. Frederick William was then working as an Elementary Schoolmaster.
Frederick William enlisted in the Dorsetshire Regiment shortly after the outbreak of the Great War and spent the next two years in India with them. This was followed by a year as a Musketry Officer in America before returning to join his regiment on the Western Front. He lost his life on the fields between Flers and Longueval in August 1918.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) list Lieutenant FW Woods, 4th Battalion, Dorsetshire Regiment, died 28/08/1918, aged 37. Buried at the Bulls Road Cemetery, Flers (Grave Ref: III.L.2.). Territorial Efficiency Medal. Son of Henry and Rosina Maria Woods, of 78, St. Vincent St., Southsea, Hants; husband of the late Ethel Annie Aldridge Woods. Native of Petersfield, Hants. India, Dec., 1914 to 1916; Dorset Regt., 1916 to 1917; Musketry Officer in America, Nov., 1917 to May 1918,.
Frederick Woods is commemorated on the Anglican Cathedral WW1 Memorial Cross and the Cenotaph. He is not listed in "The National Roll of the Great War", Section X.
Frederick William's wife Ethel Annie was the daughter of George and Jane Nelder of Portsea. Two of Ethel's younger brothers, Frank Mitchelmore Aldridge Nelder and Gordon Clarke Aldridge Nelder were also killed in the Great War.
Tim Backhouse
October 2014