Sunday, June 14, 2015

Henry Edgar Funnell, Army Service Corps

Chailey Parish Magazine first notes Edgar Funnell in October 1914 as serving his King and Country.  He then appears as Edgar Funnell up to and including September 1915.  In October 1915, when the parish magazine commenced the practice of listing men against their regiments, he appears as Pte E Funnell.  The following month, Edgar and E Funnell disappear and are replaced by Funnell, Pte H, ASC, France. 

I am assuming that Edgar and H Funnell are one and the same man but in the absence of other documentary evidence, this must remain a supposition.  I list them here on this website under one name – Henry Edgar Funnell. 

Pte Funnell appears in the parish magazine for the last time in June 1918.  He is still noted as serving with the Army Service Corps.  

He is probably Henry Edgar Funnell who was born at Maresfield, Sussex in late 1887 or early 1888 and whose birth was recorded in the Uckfield district of Sussex in March 1888.   

Edgar (his name appears as Edgar rather than Henry on census returns), appears on the 1891 census as a three year old living with his family at Chapel Lane, Dorking, Surrey.  The household comprised Owen Funnell (head, aged 47, a general labourer), his wife Matilda (aged 36) and their six children: Kate (aged 16), Edward (aged nine), Annie (aged 11), Owen (aged eight), Archibald (aged five), and Edgar.  Both the parents and all six children are recorded as having been born in Maresfield. 

Ten years later, the family has moved to Wharf Cottage, Fletching and now comprises Owen Funnell (head, aged 56, working as a labourer in a timber yard), Matilda (aged 45) and five children: Archibald Funnell (aged 16 and also working as a timber yard labourer), Edgar, Joseph Funnell (aged nine), Arthur Funnell (aged seven) and Edward Funnell (aged two). 

In addition to the children mentioned above, Owen and Matilda (who were married around 1873) had other children (making thirteen in all.  The 1881 census, taken at Maresfield, notes Clara Funnell (aged seven), Ada Funnell (aged four), John Funnell (aged two) and Alice Funnell (aged ten months).  Kate Funnell (aged six) is the only child appearing on this and the 1891 return.  Owen’s occupation is recorded as a sawyer. 

The National Archives’ on-line medal information card index does not record anyone with the name Edgar Funnell serving with the Army Service Corps.  It does however, note M/339638 Private Henry Funnell and I think that this is probably the man mentioned in Chailey’s parish magazine.

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