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Henry Percival Chaffey


On March 18 1895, Henry Manning Chaffey, a policeman, married Eliza Kilby. Ten years later their son Henry Percival was born on 3 May 1895. At the time his parents were living at 3 Abingdon Villas, Waterloo Road, Aldershot. On the parish baptism record of the Holy Trinity Church in Aldershot, Henry’s father’s occupation is given as 'Policeman'.

Early Life

By the time of the 1901 Census, Henry is six. He and his family, including three sisters Mary Elizabeth (aged 15), Ellen Louisa (aged 12) and Priscilla Charlotte Muriel (aged 10) and brother John Walter (aged one), are still living at 3 Abingdon Villas, Waterloo Road, Aldershot with his parents and his mother’s brother Gerald Kilby. Henry senior’s occupation is given as ‘Railway Police Constable’. By this time, Henry had been enrolled at the East End Elementary Boys School, and he and his sisters are recorded as 'Scholars'. In 1901 Henry’s brother, John Walter, died aged one. In December 1902, Henry’s father died leaving his pregnant wife to look after the family which eight months later, included another son, Leslie George, born on 13 August 1903. Some time after Leslie’s birth and baptism, the family moved to 73 Waterloo Road where they were living at the time of the 1911 Census. At the time of the Census, living with Henry (Harry), Leslie and his widowed mother are his three sisters. Elizabeth (Bessie) was recorded as being a 'Dressmaker', Louisa a 'Florist' and Muriel has become a 'School Teacher'.

On 14 September 1909 Henry had moved schools and he became a pupil at Aldershot County School where he was placed in the Preparatory Form. He attended the school as a Day Pupil. In March 1911 he passed the Oxford Junior Local Examination with 3rd Class Honours and on 1 August of the same year he became a Pupil Teacher, which exempted him from payment of any fees for a period of two years. In March 1913 he gained an Oxford Senior Local Certificate, followed in July of the same year by an Oxford Senior Local Certificate in Mathematics.

Chester College

Whilst he was a Pupil Teacher at Aldershot County School, Henry Percival enrolled at Chester College where he started his course in September 1913. He remained at the College until 1915 when he abandoned his course to join the Honourable Artillery Company.

Military Service

Henry enlisted in HAC on18th January 1915. At the time he gave two home addresses: 73 Waterloo Road where he had been living with his family, and The Cottage, Chester, which was his residence whilst studying at Chester College. According to an entry in The Collegian 1915, Henry became a Sergeant and completed his training in London where, amongst other tasks, he had guard duty at the Bank of England. On 3 January 1917 he was appointed to a Commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Territorial Force and was posted to the 1st Reserve Battalion of The Honourable Artillery Company.

On 24 February he arrived at 15 Camp, Le Havre from where he was posted to the 11th Service Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers. This Battalion was formed at Hounslow on 6th September 1914 and came under command of 54th Brigade, 18th (Eastern) Division.

Lest We Forget

On 10 August 1917 Henry Percival was killed in action.

Henry was awarded the British War and Victory Medals.

Post Mortem

Henry’s death is commemorated on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial Panel 9.

He is also remembered on the gravestone of his Father and Mother at Redan Road Cemetery, Aldershot, Hampshire.