By Brenda Stevens, Andrew Kirk and Marlene Dance
[an expert in Ancestry, Historical & Military records]
Surrey Heritage Day was held on Sunday 15th September 2019. St. Peters Church in Hascombe was displaying local history items, archives and photographs. Among a list of soldiers killed during both World Wars was a name .. ‘HARRY STEVENS’ and a note which read: ‘no other information is available about this man.’
Because I know of a family called Stevens that lived about the Hascombe area and in fact an Arthur Stevens who worked along side my father in the nearby hamlet of Thorncombe Street in the 1950’s. So I contacted Arthur’s daughter, Ms. Brenda Stevens who told me Harry was her uncle and had died towards the end of WW1 aged only 18 yrs.
With a few more family details I contacted a Ms. Marlene Dance in Canada who can expertly work with Ancestry, Historical and Military records and she produced these amazing facts and details about this ‘Lost & Forgotten Soldier’ killed 101 years ago.
Harry Stevens; his real name was Henry Charles Stevens (HCS), but known as ‘Harry’ all his life by everyone. He was to eldest of 5 brothers and a sister to parents Kate and Henry who was an Agricultural Labourer living in Pear Tree Green in Dunsfold. He later lived and worked as a Gamekeeper for Joseph Godman on The Park Hatch Estate, Loxhill, Nr Hascombe.
HCS was born in 1899 and baptised in St. Marys and All Saints church in Dunsfold on 21st May 1899.
There is no written record or date of his ‘Call to Arms’ but he enlisted in Guildford, and entered The Bedfordshire Regt., service No. 10638. He later transferred to The Essex, Regt. 10th Battalion, service No. 42902, and went to war in the trenches of The Somme.
Pte. HCS was killed-in -action in Flanders, France on 26th April 1918 aged 18yrs.
Pte. 42902 Henry Charles Stevens Essex Regt. Burial and ‘final resting place’ is The Pozieres Memorial, Pozieres, Departement de la Somme, Picardie, France. His name STEVENS H C is carved on the monument.. panel 51 and 52
The above document shows that HCS’s personal effects were returned to his mother Mrs. Kate Stevens.
It is hoped that the information and documentation on Pte. Henry Charles Stevens will be accepted by the authorities and this young mans sacrifice will be recognised and his story can be told during the Service of Remembrance on Sunday 10 November 2019 in Hascombe so long after his death. It would also show our gratitude to the Stevens family for the loss of their eldest son who gave his life for his country. R.I.P.