This site commemorates the men and women of Collingham, Linton and Micklethwaite who served during World War 1. Today we especially commemorate Corporal 18282 Henry Reginald Hirst of the Royal Army Ordnance Corp who died on this day in 1936.
Sargent, James
(1893-1983)

Rank and Unit at End of World War One

Rank Driver

Service Number 801364

Service Army

Battalion B Bty, 82nd Bde

Regiment Royal Field Artillery

Biography

On the 18th October 1918, The Wetherby News published a short item:

Wetherby News October 18th 1918

Driver J Sargent RFA, brother of Mrs C Hague, Church Street, Collingham, has been awarded the Military Medal for gallant conduct and devotion to duty on August 24th 1918.

Despite numerous searches we had been unable to identify the record of this man connected with Collingham. However I recently found a link via http://parishes.lincolnshire.gov.uk/Scotter/section.asp?docId=58761. This provided much information on a pair of brothers, James 'Jim' and John William 'Jack' Sargent. It also provided the much needed link to Collingham, as it noted that 'John William Sargent moved after the war to live with his family in Collingham, Yorkshire. We thank the authors of the above web site for much of the following information.

James 'Jim' was born on the 4th June 1893 in Scotterthorpe, Lincolnshire, the son of Henry (a farm labourer from Tetney) and Sarah (nee Bird of Ulceby). Jim's mother died, aged just 29, when Jim was 3.

Jim was a Methodist and attended Scotter School. His headmaster, Charles Wakerley, is reported to have wanted Jim to continue his education and train to be a teacher, but Jim's family circumstances meant he had to find work. Thus, aged 17 he was employed at the Scotterthorpe farm of Elizabeth and the late George Proudley, and before the Great War Jim worked as a farm labourer at Graizelound near Haxey where he met Dorothy ‘Dolly’ Jane Berry of Haxey.

Jim enlisted as a volunteer at Grimsby on 19th May 1915. He is described as being 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighing 126 pounds. He was posted to Luton and Abbot’s Langley, Hertfordshire and he served in St. Albans as a groom.

During the Rebellion, Jim served in Ireland around 1916. On his return to England, Jim served in High Wycombe as the groom of an officer’s horses. Jim was posted to the Base Depot in France on 28th November 1917 where he joined 82nd Brigade.

On the 24th August 1918 Jim was one of 3 drivers of a horse drawn gun carriage which ran over a mine. One man suffered 22 wounds and the other was shell shocked. James was uninjured and managed to round up the horses and get them and his fellow drivers back to base camp, as a result he was awarded the Military Medal on 13th October 1918 ‘for bravery in the field‘. This was gazetted on the 11th February 1919.

Jim returned to England on 7th June 1919 and was demobilized at Charlton on 11th July 1919. He went back to his old job on the Epworth farm, continuing to travel regularly to see Dolly at Leeds where she was working, and they married at Haxey Church on 5th June 1922.

Jim was employed at Scunthorpe gas works on Doncaster Road and worked with the company until retirement.

Jim died on the 10th April 1983, aged 89, and was cremated at Scunthorpe.


Sources

First World War Medal Index Cards. The National Archives (WO372).
First World War Medal Index Rolls. The National Archives (WO329).
First World War British Army Service Records. The National Archives (WO363).

If you have any photographs or further details about this person we would be pleased to hear from you. Please contact us via: alan.berry@collinghamanddistrictwararchive.info