Gerard Eyre was the eldest son of Layton Eyre, and nephew to Charles Lewis Eyre, who was himself an OW. He was born on the 5th October 1890, and joined Westminster School in 1904. He was admitted to Grant’s, where he remained until he left the school four years later. There are limited records pertaining to his life before he joined the army, and we do not know his whereabouts during this interim period.
In June 1916, he became Lieutenant in the 59th Division of the Royal Field Artillery, and was sent almost immediately to the Western Front. Here he remained until 1918, when he was victim of a gas attacks. The injuries he sustained as a result of gas attacks were so severe that he was permanently discharged in July 1919. Although we do not know the exact nature of these injuries, they continued to haunt him throughout his life, and in 1921 he passed away as a direct result of exposure to poison gas.
Austin Woodbridge was the son of solicitor Thomas Woodbridge, and the seventh member of his immediate family to study at Westminster School. He was born 18th May 1876, and arrived at the school in 1891, joining Grant’s House. While at the school, he participated in football and cricket to a significant degree, earning his pink-and-whites in 1894. He left the school that same year.
He is recorded in the Elizabethan several times as an Old Westminster participating in sporting events, and, interestingly, as a member of the Freemasons. He became a member of the London Stock Exchange in 1900, and continued to work on the stock exchange thereafter. In 1905, he married Ethel Mary, the third daughter of George Sunday.
The next surviving records of Woodbridge emerge in military documents, allowing us to identify his military progress. Here he served as a member of the 8th Battalion Middlesex Regiment from 1912, before becoming a Major in April 1915. He held a special appointment in 1917, and was subsequently awarded the Military Cross.
At the end of the war he married his second wife, Norah Woodbridge. The fate of Mary Ethel is unknown. Austin Woodbridge continued working active service after the ceasefire, remaining in France and the Western Front. It was here that he passed away, dying of influenza on 28th February 1919.
Hugh Logan was born in 1885, the son of a Labour politician. He was born in Leicester, and was admitted to Westminster School in 1897, joining Grant’s. While at Westminster he was a double pink and Captain of Cricket, and as a right-handed batsman made an impression on many at the school.
Upon leaving Westminster in 1903, he studied at Trinity Hall Cambridge. Following his graduation from Cambridge, Logan pursued a career as a professional cricketer, appearing for Leicester in a first-class match against The Gentlemen of Philadelphia in 1903. In 1911, he married Phyllis Hemingway, who would go on to survive him by many years.
In 1915, Logan joined the Leicestershire Yeomanry, attaining the rank of 2nd Lieutenant. He was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 1917, prior to being sent to the Western Front. Although he survived active service, remaining on the Western Front throughout 1917, he contracted influenza as a result of living conditions in the active war-zone. He died of pneumonia at the 51st Clearing Station at Tournai, Belgium, three months after the armistice was declared. A memorial plaque was erected for him in Church Langton, Market Harborough.
Leslie Imroth was the only son of Gustav Imroth, a minor Randlord involved in the development of the South African mining industry. He was born in 1897, and spent the early part of his life in South Africa, before studying at Westminster School from 1910. He was admitted to Grant’s, as is recorded in both the October 1910 and February 1911 copies of the Elizabethan. He remained at the school for only one year, leaving in 1911.
Little is known of his life during this period, and it is not until four years later that further records of him begin. These records report that he joined the army in 1915, serving as 2nd Lieutenant in the 11th Hampshire Regiment. He became Lieutenant in 1916, and served in active duty for two years. He sustained wounds in action in 1918, and eventually passed away in his home country of South Africa, at Johannesburg. He is buried in Braamfontein Cemetery in Johannesburg.
Arthur George Hunt was the youngest son of Frederick William Hunt, and was born in 1881. He joined Westminster in 1895 and was admitted to Grant’s House, where he remained until 1899. Hunt remained in England for two years, before deciding to immigrate to Canada.
He left for Canada in 1901 and remained until the outbreak of war. He initially joined the Seaforth Highlanders at Vancouver, before returning to England with a draft regiment in 1916. A few months later he became 2nd Lieutenant in the Irish Guards and was sent to the Western Front in 1918, attached to the Guards Machine Gun Regiment. It was here that he died in action, leaving behind his spouse, Katherine Bingham Powell.
Charles Westcar Sheppard was the only son of William Sheppard, and he transferred to Westminster from Charterhouse School in 1897. He joined Grant’s House, where he remained for three years. When he left the school, he joined the Crystal Palace Engineering Collective, working with them for over a decade.
He enlisted in the 16th Public Schools Battalion in 1914, before moving to the Service Battalion in 1915. Here he rose the ranks to become Lieutenant in September 1916, before being transferred to the Royal Engineers in 1917.
He served in several locations during his time in the military, including the Western Front and Salonika. As part of the Royal Engineers, his bravery earned him a mention in despatches, and he returned home in 1918. Upon his return, he was employed in the Air Ministry, before passing away in unknown circumstances in October 1918.
Born in April 1898, Herbert was the eldest son in his family, and consequently the first to attend Westminster School. He was admitted to Grant’s in 1912, and often took part in cricket tournaments, where he was a keen bowler. He left the school in July 1914 and enrolled in the Public Schools Battalions just a few months later.
He was sent to the Western Front in November 1915 but returned to England the following year, having earned the rank of 2nd Lieutenant and transferring regiments. He transferred once more in 1916, moving to the East Surrey Regiment. With this regiment, he returned to the Western Front in August, before moving to Italy in November 1917.
It was here that Todd was invalided, and he returned to England in 1918, receiving upon his return the Military Cross with bar and the Croix de Guerre. By August 1918 he had recovered, and returned once more to the Western Front, where he was killed just a few months later.
Maurice Humphris Garrett was born in 1884, son to Lewis Berry Garrett and Marion Garrett. His was brother of Ernest Phillips Garret, an Old Westminster and keen cricketer. Garrett joined Westminster School in 1899 and was admitted to Grant’s. Upon his departure in 1901 he is described in The Elizabethan as one of the school’s ‘shining lights’.
He initially joined the Artists’ Rifles Officer Training Corps, a volunteer branch of the Territorial Force, but in 1917 was made part of the 15th Battalion of the London Regiment. He was sent to the Western Front in the same year, and was killed in action in Peronne, France, in 1918. He is commemorated on the Vis-en-Artois War Memorial near Arras.
Eugenius Alfred Roche was at the school for barely 18 months. He was a member of Grant’s House, and after leaving the school in August 1868, trained as an army surgeon. He served in the Afghan War between 1878 and 1880. He reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel by 1897 and retired from the army 10 years later. He married Louisa Forbes in 1888 and had four children.
It is perhaps as he served abroad that we have relatively few records of his life. Roche was thanked by Secretary of State for Colonies on the occasion of the destruction of Saint-Pierre, Martinique, by volcanic eruption in 1902, for his ‘ready and valuable assistance’. 28,000 people died as a result of the eruption.
It remains slightly unclear why Roche is included on the school’s war memorial. He died at home in Brighton, aged 65 and was not in active service. However, it is possible that he did serve during the war in a medical capacity, and his death might have resulted from this work.
Leslie was the son of J.V.N. Plumptre and Mary Ling. He was adopted by Henry Heigham and adopted his surname in addition to that of his father. He joined the school aged just nine years old from Shrewsbury House Preparatory School. He started initially as a day boy in Ashburnham in 1907 and then became a boarder in Grant’s. Leslie left in Easter 1913, then aged fifteen, and joined HMS Worcester. The ship was the home of the Thames Nautical Training College and cadets received training with a view to becoming seamen in the navy.
Leslie’s career took him in a different direction and he joined the Royal Military College, Sandhurst in 1917 before taking a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 3rd Battalion of the Bedfordshire Regiment in September 1917. In December he was attached to the Royal Flying Corps, and he went out to the Western Front in March 1918. Eleven days after arriving, he was wounded and invalided home, but he returned to the front on 19th May. Once again, less than a fortnight after arriving he was injured in a bombing raid. He died from his wounds on 4th June 1918.