Charles William Hales

Charles William Hales was born in Sudbrook in 1896.  His father (also Charles William) was from Goulceby, near Louth. His mother Sarah (nee Todd) was from Salmonby near Horncastle.  The family moved from Sudbrooke to Honington (Willoughby Road) around 1900.  Three years later they were in Carlton Scroop, before moving to Court Leys, near Brandon, where Charles (senior) worked as a shepherd.

In Dec 1915 Charles (junior) was working as a waggoner at Court Leys when he signed up for the Lincolnshire Regiment at Grantham; but he wasn’t mobilised at the time.  In early 1917 his call up was delayed after his employer, Edmund Moore of Court Leys, appealed to the Grantham Rural Tribunal. 

Edmund Schneider Dodwell Moore was the son of Canon (Henry Dodwell) Moore of Honington Vicarage.  He joined the Yeomanry in 1900 and served as a private in the Boer War before taking up farming at Court Leys.  During the Great War he was a sergeant with 1/1st Battalion, Sherwood Ranger Yeomanry and was mentioned in dispatches and (in 1916) was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his service in Egypt, Gallipoli and Salonika.  At which point he seems to have returned to Court Leys.  He later retired from farming to The Hollies, High St, Brant Broughton. He was an ARP warden for Brant Broughton during WW2 and died there in 1949.  His brother, Charles Henry Dodwell Moore, became vicar of Hough on the Hill.

Charles Hales was finally mobilised in May 1917 and sent to France that August. A few weeks later he was transferred to the Prince of Wales’ (North Staffordshire) Regiment.

He was killed in action on 30 May 1918 during the (3rd) Battle of the Aisne. A small and tired British force was sent to the Chemin des Dames to relieve French units.  It was then virtually destroyed during a German Offensive (Operation Bluecher).  Charles has no known grave but is commemorated on the Soissons Memorial.  By Dec 1919 his parents had moved to Aswarby Grange, Folkingham.

Charles William Hales is listed on the Brant Broughton war memorial. The connection with the village is not clear, but Court Leys (which is in Fulbeck parish) lies between Brandon and Stragglethorpe (Brant Broughton parish).  It’s also possible that Edmund Hales suggested that Charles’ name was included on the memorial plaque, which wasn’t installed until 1950.