Person    | Male  Born 11/1/1885  Died 2/5/1918

Private George James Bagwell

Categories: Armed Forces

Countries: Belgium

War dead, WW1 i

Commemorated on a memorial as having died in WW1.

Private George James Bagwell

George James Bagwell was born on 11 January 1885, a son of George James Bagwell (1861-1926) and Annie Louisa Bagwell née Bryant (1853-1945). His birth was registered in the 1st quarter of 1855 in the Kingston registration district, Surrey. On 20 February 1885 he was baptised at St Mary's Church, East Molesey, Surrey, where the baptismal register shows the family living in Bell Road, East Molesey and that his father was a waiter.

In the 1891 census he was shown as aged 6 years, living in Nightingale Road, East Molesey, with his mother and four siblings: Isabella Sarah Bagwell (1881-1936); Joseph George Bagwell (1883-1962); Reginald Harry Bagwell (1887-1938) and Louisa Annie Bagwell (b.1889). His father was listed on the census forms as a butler residing at the home of Sidney W. Greystone and Mrs Emily M. Greystone in Hurst Road, West Molesey, Surrey.

He was described as a postman, aged 16 years, on the 1901 census living in Langton Road, East Molesey, with his parents, eight siblings: Isabella; Joseph; Reginald; Louisa; Arthur Rouland Bagwell (1891-1973); Elizabeth Charlotte Bagwell (1894-1973); Doris Beatrice Bagwell (1896-1974) and Muriel Bagwell (1901-1985), together with a cousin, George J. B. Marrison. His father was shown as a hotel waiter, whilst his siblings were listed as; Isabella - dressmaker; Joseph - sawyer/mills and Reginald - telegraph messenger. 

In October 1901 he was appointed as an un-established assistant sorting office postman at the East Molesey Sorting Office, Surrey, and the London Gazette shows that he was appointed as a temporary assistant postman in Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey, with effect from 28 January 1902.

On 26 March 1908 he married Lily Barbara Harding (1886-1953) and they lived for a while at 47 Sutherland Road, Pimlico, London. They had three daughters, Hilda Barbara Grace Bagwell (1908-1993) born in East Molesey on 5 June 1908; Iris Joan Mary Bagwell (1913-1998) born in Walton on the Naze, Essex on 5 December 1912 and Joyce Lilian Bagwell (1918-1990) born in Lambeth, London on 22 May 1918 (after her father had died).

When he completed his 1911 census return form he described himself a 'town postman', aged 26 years and living in a 5 roomed property at 15 Bridge Road, East Molesey, with his wife and their daughter, Hilda.  In April 1913 he was appointed as a Postman in the London Western District Office.

On 21 April 1915 he enlisted in the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, service number SE/6787, but was compulsorily transferred to 1st/6th Battalion of the Cheshire Regiment, service number 51495. On 30 May 1915 the regiment embarked from Southampton to Le Havre, France. He was promoted to Lance Corporal on 13 September 1915 and further promoted to Acting Corporal on 18 August 1916. However, he was reverted to private on 5 October 1916 for being absent two days earlier at 9.15pm until he was found in his hut 2¾ hours later at 12 midnight. In April 1918 he was reported as missing in action and finally reported as killed in action, aged 33 years, on 2 May 1918. As he has no known grave he is commemorated on Stone 61.A on the Tyne Cot Memorial to the Missing in the Tyne Cot Cemetery, Vijfwegestraat, 8980 Zonnebeke, Belgium.

Probate records show that administration with a will was granted to his widow on 7 August 1918 and that his effects totalled £180-1s-2d. He was posthumously awarded the 1914-1915 Star, the British War Medal 1914-1918 and the Victory Medal.

He is shown as Bagwell. G. J. on the Western Postal District war memorial in Mount Pleasant, London, WC1 and as G.W. Bagwell on the Molesey war memorial in Hurst Road, East Molesey, KT8. He is also commemorated on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's website and on the Imperial War Museum's Lives of the First World War website.

2016: we are very grateful to Zoey Clark for sending us the photo of Bagwell, her great great uncle. She tells us that "George's dad was quite famous locally, being known as the 'Bagwell of the Mitre'. He was the head guy at the Mitre Hotel near Hampton Court, an account of his life and family is on the Bagwell genealogy website.

Credit for this entry to: Andrew Behan.

This section lists the memorials where the subject on this page is commemorated:
Private George James Bagwell

Commemorated ati

Molesey war memorial

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