Private FREDERICK ARTHUR BROWN

Service: 13th Battalion, The Royal Sussex Regiment
Service No: G/8663
Date & place of birth: 1897 in Trotton, Sussex
Date & place of death: 31 July1917 near St Julien on the first day of The Third Battle of Ypres

Frederick Brown was born in Trotton but lived for most of his life in Rogate. He was a labourer for a cycle agent and a gardener before joining up.

Family background

Frederick Arthur Brown was born in Trotton in 1897. He was the eldest of two sons of Fred Brown, who was also born in Trotton, a cowman on a ‘gentleman’s estate’, and his wife Edith from South Harting. In 1911 Frederick, his parents and brother lived in Broad Road, Rogate and he was employed as a labourer for a cycle agent. Before he joined up Frederick had become a gardener.

In 1901 Edward and the Brown family lived at Dangstein Farm House. There was also another family living at the farm at the time of the census – George Waller and his wife Hannah. George was a farm labourer.

Military Service

Frederick enlisted in Petersfield on 10 December 1915 and was called up to Chichester on 21 January 1916. He joined the Royal Sussex Regiment and through 1916 served in both the 3rd and 7th Battalions. On 13 March 1917 he was posted to the 13th Battalion in France.

Death & Commemoration

On 31 July 1917 the Third Battle of Ypres commenced and the 13th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment was part of the 39th Division in XVIII Corps which took part in The Battle of Pilckem Ridge.

The Corps made initial gains and after an hour had moved down to the Steenbeck stream, one of the muddiest parts of the battlefield, following behind a smoke and shrapnel barrage. They were able to establish themselves along the stream some 3,000 yards from the St Julien to Pilckem – Langemarck Road. Heavy rain began to fall on the afternoon of 31 July and the worsening weather had a serious effect on operations into August.

At the end of 31 July Frederick Arthur Brown was listed as missing.

He is commemorated on the Rogate War Memorial.

Midhurst U3A WW1 War Memorial Project