Gunner
Christopher W Taylor

Map

About Christopher Woodbine

  • Name
    Christopher Woodbine
  • Initials
    C W
  • Surname
    Taylor
  • Date of Birth
    8 October1896
  • Birth town
    Littleport, Ely, Cambs
  • Resided town
    Littleport, Ely, Cambs and Godstone, Surrey
  • Commemorated
  • Nationality
    English
  • Place of death
    Surrey South Eastern
  • Date of death
    March 1977
  • Married
    yes
  • Occupation
    Farm Labourer

Service Information

  • Royal Marines

  • Service Number
    14886
  • Rank
    Gunner
  • Ship
    HMS Marlborough

Biography

Christopher Woodbine Taylor was born in Littleport, Ely, Cambridgeshire on 8 October 1896 to parents Christopher and Emma (nee Woodbine).  In 1901, the family, along with four children, were living on a farm in Plains Road, Littleport where Christopher’s father was a horse keeper.  In 1911, Christopher was living in Wisbech Road, Littleport with his mother, Emma (44) and seven siblings.  Christopher and his older brother Harold were both farm labourers.  His father was in Canada between the years 1910 and 1914.

Christopher attested in London on 17 February 1916, aged 19 years and four months, and joined the Royal Marines Artillery as a Gunner.  He was 5ft 9in tall, with a fresh complexion, blue eyes and light brown hair.  He signed up for twelve years.  He served on HMS Marlborough from January 1917 to March 1920, with the 8th and 10th Battalions Royal Marines Artillery.

‘At the end of the First World War, HMS Renown was refitted as a royal yacht and used by Edward, Prince of Wales, for a Royal Tour to Australia in 1920 to thank the people of Australia for the sacrifices made during the Great War.  During this visit the ‘Renown’ brought various “ship’s mascots” back to Britain for zoological parks, including a cockatoo, two rare lizards, emu chicks, a Dominican tortoise, opossums, parrots and a wallaby.  Christopher served on HMS Renown from September 1921 to June 1922, when it was used by the Prince of Wales for a Royal Tour of India and Japan.  He left the service with an Honourable Discharge on 8 July 1922’http://museum.rba.gov.au/exhibitions/from-bank-to-battlefield/visit-of-the-prince-of-wales-to-australia-in-1920/index.html

His service history states that Christopher was paid a war gratuity of £20 from the Naval Prize Fund and also that on 30 June 1922, he was paid his final share of the Naval Prize Fund.  This Prize money was a reward paid to a ship’s crew for the capture or sinking of an enemy ship.  http://www.naval-history.net/

He was awarded the British War and Allied Victory Medals.

Information from the Broadhurst Family Tree (http://www.broadhurst-family.co.uk/Private/Laura%20Kyffin/report-49.htm) states that in 1923 Christopher was living in the Becontree, Dagenham area and working on the Ford Motor factory site.

Christopher married Mary Edna Pankhurst in Romford on 1 January 1927, and they had ten children between 1927 and 1943.  He met his wife while gardening for her mother, Florence.  By 1927, the couple had moved to Kent and lived in various places including Keston and Biggin Hill.  They moved to Surrey around 1936 and when war broke out Christopher was working at Redhill Aerodrome and became employed by the Air Ministry.  In 1941, he was working in Sussex building army barracks and later in the war carried out demolition work in London.

On the 1939 Register, Christopher and Mary were living at Charity Cottages, Whitewood, Godstone, Surrey with seven of their children.  Christopher was listed as an aerodrome groundsman.  Christopher died in Surrey in 1977, aged 80.

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Campaign Medals

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