Service Number 74044
Battalion 29 Brigade
Regiment Royal Field Artillery
Buried St James on the Corner, Wetherby
George Robert Cumberland was born on the 8th November 1894 in Tadcaster, the son of John R Cumberland and his wife, Sarah (nee Stubbs). In 1911, George was working, aged 15, as a lad at Park Farm, Hoyland, Tadcaster. He attested for service in The Royal Artillery before The Great War on the 19th Sept 1913 in Beverley.
We do not know much about George's military service during the war - we know that he was returned on the 1918 and 1919 Electoral Rolls of Micklethwaite as being Absent on account of Naval or Military Service. George's service record has not survived, but we believe that he served as Driver, then Sergeant 74044 George Robert Cumberland of the 29th Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery (RFA). George's medal card for the Great War shows he was awarded the British War Medal, the Victory Medal and the 1914 Star. The qualifying date for the last medal probably means that George was either already in the Army on the outbreak of war, or that he was a trained reservist who was immediately mobilised. Certainly George first went overseas on the 23rd August 1914 very soon after the outbreak of war.
Since George's service record has not survived we cannot be sure whether he left 29 Brigade Royal Field Artillery at any time in the war, but assuming he remained with this unit throughout the war we can gain a view of what events he may have taken part in.
29 Brigade RFA was part of 4th Division and George would have served in either 125 Battery, 126 Battery or 127 Battery RFA. 4th Division was a Regular Army Division (again perhaps hinting that George was a regular soldier before the war) and was stationed at Woolwich, Shornecliffe, Dover and Colchester prior to the outbreak of the war. The Division arrived in France in August 1914 and served in France and Flanders until the Armistice.
The 4th Division took part in the following battles:
After the war, George returned to the Wetherby area, being on the Micklethwaite electoral rolls for many years. He married Rachel Clayforth in 1944. We have found one record of him, in 1933:
George died in 1968, and both he and his wife Rachel are now buried in St.James on the Corner, Wetherby.
1911 Census. The National Archives. Class RG14 Piece 28366
First World War Medal Index Cards. The National Archives (WO372).
First World War Medal Index Rolls. The National Archives (WO329).
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