Sunday, February 08, 2015

R/986 Sergeant Harry Tapp, AVC

Harry Tapp was born around 1884 in Chailey.  He appears on the 1901 census as the second oldest child in a nine-strong household.  The family was living at South Common, Chailey and was headed by Joseph Tapp (a 48 year old thatcher from Barcombe) and his wife, Fanny Tapp aged 43, also born in Barcombe.  The family’s six children are noted as James Tapp (aged 18, an agricultural labourer), Harry (aged 16, working as an agricultural labourer), Fanny Tapp (aged 14), William Tapp (aged 11), Archie Tapp (aged seven), Aubery Tapp (aged four) and Ashley Tapp (six months).  A 28 year old James Tapp (Chailey born, boarding at Bridge Cottage and working as an agricultural labourer) is also noted on census. 

There were also two other children from the marriage.  The 1891 census for Chailey notes a May Tapp (aged 12) and a Kate Tapp (aged 10), both born in Chailey and living with the family on South Common.   By the time the 1901 census was taken, May was working as a cook in the household of James E Odgers of 145 Woodstock Road, Oxford while Kate, (recorded as Kate Taff on the census), was working as a housemaid at ‘The Elms’, the house of Walter Mews in Portslade-by-Sea. 

In October 1914, Chailey Parish Magazine notes that Harry Tapp is serving his King and Country.  In October 1915, it is stated that Sergeant H Tapp is serving with the Army Veterinary Corps, Royal Field Artillery in France.  In December 1917 that information is further updated to note that he is attached to Headquarters. 

Harry appears to have served throughout the war, his final entry appearing in Chailey Parish Magazine in July 1919 as: Tapp, Sergt H, AVC, RFA (att H-Qr).  The National Archives gives his rank as Sergeant and Acting Sergeant, his regiment as Army Veterinary Corps and his regimental number as R/986.

Harry’s brothers Ashley, Archie and Aubrey, and his cousins John and Frank Ford also served their King and Country during the First World War.

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