Object of the Month March 2016

Edward Stephen Hudson memorial plaque

Edward Stephen Hudson was born in Canning Town in 1891 but his surviving relatives lived in Havering. He enlisted in the 7th Battalion, King’s Rifle Corps, on 9th November 1914. This was one of Lord Kitchener’s service battalions which, similar to the pals’ battalions, were initially made entirely of volunteers. Together they created the “New Army” to reinforce the beleaguered regular army which had been sent to France in the summer of 1914. Edward was mobilised in May 1915, landed in Boulogne on the 19th and saw action in Ypres. Sadly he was killed soon thereafter, though precisely what happened will remain a mystery. His enlistment record states the Army Council decided he was “to be regarded for official purposes” as having died on or since the 30th July 1915. At this date the battalion was involved in the Ypres Salient around Hooge, an area subject to constant heavy shelling. Edward was just 23 years old. This memorial plaque, also known as a “death penny” or “dead man’s penny” was given to his mother after the war and came with this letter from Buckingham Palace.

Donated by Wendy Neal.


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