Contributed by: Barry Barnes, on 2008-11-17
|Year of Birth||1888|
|Year of Death||1916|
|Regiment||Royal Sussex Regiment|
|Place of Wartime Residence||Oxshott, Surrey|
George William Barnes known as Will - was born in the spring of 1888 near Epsom, Surrey. He was the first of seven sons and one daughter for Jesse (of Charlwood, Surrey) and Mary (formerly Boughton of Stoke D'Abernon, Surrey. Mary died in 1906.)
Will was attested at Brighton as L/8445 in the Royal Sussex Regiment. On 4th August 1914 he went to Peshawar, India. He also served in Mesopotamia where he died on 30th September 1916. This was two weeks after his younger cousin, Sam(uel) Barnes, was killed at The Battle of The Somme.
Private George William Barnes is buried in Baghdad, Iraq, at the North Gate War Cemetery at Plot Reference XXI. P. 35. (Historical information about Baghdad North Gate War Cemetery is on the web site for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.) He was awarded war medals.
A letter written to Will in January 1916 by his cousin, George Barnes, my father, is in my possession. George also sent the Weekly Dispatch 'hoping that it will help you to pass away an hour or two.'
George wrote about family, the death of Uncle Fred, that Sam was doing well in France, and that George and his sister, Rose, had recently stayed with Will's father, Jesse. Sadly, Will did not receive this letter and paper; it was returned with the envelope stamped 'undelivered through capitulation at Kut.'