Continuing our Farnham Remembers feature which first looked at the Great War story of Sergeant Thomas Hollingsworth Tovey, we now look at the life of another Farnham boy and his experience on the Western Front.

The Museum of Farnham opens its new exhibition this Tuesday Time to Remember: An Exhibition to mark the first two minutes silence, May 1916, exploring the background to the events on Castle Street including what is widely believed to be the first two minutes silence anywhere in the world. On Sun 01 May there will be a largescale townwide event to mark the centenary of this occassion, more details to come very soon.

Lieutenant Walter George Frederic Welch

Lieutenant Walter G. F. Welch was the only son of R. Courtenay Welch, of Army College, Heath End, Farnham.

Walter was educated at Charterhouse and the Army College before he attended the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich. During his time at the Academy he was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant in the Royal Field Artillery and posted to the 127nd Battery at Bordon. Walter was promoted to Lieutenant three years later and joined the 44th Ammunition Column. After this he joined the 117th Battery Royal Field Artillery and took part in the First Battle of Ypres. On 30th October 1914, Walter’s gun was posted in a wooded area a hundred yards south of Veldhock; an area that was quickly becoming indefensible. Just before the order to retreat was given, Walter was struck by a shell and killed. He was 24 years old.

Walters’ Commanding Officer wrote of him ‘the life and soul of our little mess, a keen and good soldier.’ A soldier serving under him wrote ‘Mr Welch was always very popular with the men, but especially so in action.’

Walter was buried with his guns where he fell. After the war his father bought a small plot of land surrounding his grave and put up a private memorial, something the War Graves Commission tried to stop. On 9 November 1956 Walters’ body was exhumed and reburied in Ypres Ramparts Cemetery, Belgium.

maltings meets: Brilliance director, Gavin Stride
maltings meets: Brilliance director, Gavin Stride
2 weeks ago
take part in Refreshers 2019
take part in Refreshers 2019
4 weeks ago
first-time theatre for our youngest audiences
first-time theatre for our youngest audiences
1 month ago
maltings meets: Dawn State Theatre Company
maltings meets: Dawn State Theatre Company
1 month ago
Gregg Wallace: Doesn’t Get Tougher Than This
Gregg Wallace: Doesn’t Get Tougher Than This
2 months ago
autumn season of theatre at the Maltings
autumn season of theatre at the Maltings
2 months ago
world renowned theatre live on the big screen | autumn screenings
world renowned theatre live on the big screen | autumn screenings
2 months ago
British wildlife celebrated in the Riverside Café Gallery…
British wildlife celebrated in the Riverside Café Gallery…
2 months ago
filmmaltings kids’ summer film Programme
filmmaltings kids’ summer film Programme
3 months ago
Bring Your Own Baby Comedy Club returns
Bring Your Own Baby Comedy Club returns
3 months ago