First World War in Headington and Marston, Oxford

Charles Alan YOUNG (1892–1917)

Charles Alan Young (known as Alan) was born in Cardiff in 1892, the only son of Charles Alfred Young (born in South Shields, Durham in 1862) and Maria Burrell Putt, known as May (born in Brixham, Devon near the beginning of 1866).

Alan's parents were married in the Portsea Island district of Hampshire in the third quarter of 1888. They had two children:

  • (Charles) Alan Young (born in Cardiff in 1892, reg. fourth quarter)
  • Margaret Ursula Young (born in St Andrew’s, Dinas Powys, Glamorgan on 6 March 1899).

At the time of the 1891 census Alan’s parents were boarding at 222 Newport Road, Roath, Cardiff, and his father was working as a ship store merchant or shipbroker. Alan, their first child, was born the following year.

Alan's father Charles Alfred Young died in Cardiff at the age of 38 in the second quarter of 1900, when Charles was aged seven and his sister was one.

At the time of the 1901 census Alan (8) was living at 16 Cwt-y-fil Road, Penarth with his widowed mother Maria (34), recorded as May, and his sister Margaret (2), plus a servant.

In 1911 Alan (18) was a fitter’s apprentice, living at the same address with his mother Maria (44) and his sister Margaret (12), who was at school. They no longer had a servant.

It must have been in Penarth that Alan’s mother met Herbert Field (born in Wallingford in 1855/6). At the time of the 1911 census Herbert (a widower of 55) was working as a schoolmaster and living in Penarth with his two children Esther Mary Field (13) and James Charles Burstal Field (7), as well as his Oxfordshire-born niece, who kept house for him.

Near the beginning of 1912 in Cardiff, Alan's mother Maria Burrell Young married her second husband Herbert Field.

Church House


In about 1915 Charles’s mother and stepfather, Herbert Field, who had now retired from being a schoolmaster, moved to Old Headington. They lived at Church House, 14 St Andrew’s Road (left), presumably with the children from both marriages.


Alan was probably called up when conscription started in 1916, shortly after his family moved to Church House.

Poppy In the First World War Alan Young served in the “D” Battery of the 256th Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery and on 10 June 1918 he was gazetted Second Lieutenant. He was killed in action in France at the age of 25 on 14 October 1918.

He was buried in the Ramillies British Cemetery (D.22), and his war grave there has the added words “GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN”. (Only 40% of war headstones bear an inscription such as this near their base: the main inscription was free, but families had to pay 3½d per letter for a personal message.)

His will was proved on 9 May 1919. and his effects came to £178 16s. 7d.

He is remembered on the roll of honour of St Andrew’s Church in Old Headington and on two war memorials in Penarth: one at All Saints Church and the other in Alexandra Park.


St Andrew's memorial board

Alan’s stepfather and mother
  • Herbert Field died at the age of 63 and was buried at Headington Cemetery on 8 February 1919.
  • Mrs Maria Burrell Field remained in Church House until 1925. She outlived her daughter, and appears to have been living with her son-in-law at 27 The Mount, Caversham, near Reading when she died at The Loans in Shillingford, Oxfordshire on 10 July 1948.
Alan’s sister
  • Margaret Ursula Young was still living with her mother at Church House, Headington when on 12 June 1923 at St Andrew's Church she married Geoffrey Simpson Field, a solicitor from Reading. (Her husband was the son of Charles Gyningham Field, who was born in Wallingford in 1850 and may have been a relation of Margaret's stepfather Herbert Field, born there in 1855/6). Margaret Ursula Field was living at 27 The Mount, Caversham, near Reading when she died at the Greenlands Nursing Home in Reading at the age of 45 in 1943. Her husband Geoffrey Simpson Field, who served as a Lieutenant Colonel during the Second World War, was still living at 27 The Mount when he died in the Royal Berkshire Hospital on 2 September 1956.

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