Ernest Hancock


About Ernest

  • Name
  • Initials
  • Surname
  • Date of Birth
    10 August 1896
  • Birth town
    Burslem, Staffordshire
  • Resided town
  • Commemorated
  • Nationality
  • Place of death
  • Date of death
  • Married
  • Occupation

Service Information

  • Army

  • Service Number
  • Rank
  • Regiment
    Royal Field Artillery


Ernest Hancock was born on 10 August 1896, in Burslem, Staffordshire to parents Charles Molineux and Elizabeth (nee Beacall).  In 1901, Ernest (4) was living with his family at 62 Goodfellow Street, Tunstall, Wolstanton, Staffordshire, his father Charles (32) was a potters decorator, Elizabeth (31) and siblings Albert (7) and Florence (1).  By 1911, the family were living at 9 Peel Street, Tunstall, Staffordshire and Ernest (14) was a grocer’s errand boy.  Ernest was one of eight children, but only five survived.

Ernest attested on 25 October 1915, to join the Territorial Force.  He gave his address as 14 Cooper Street, Tunstall.  He was of slight build at 5’3” and a 34” chest.  He joined the 3/2nd North Midland Brigade, Royal Field Artillery as a Driver.  On 4 July 1916, he transferred to C Battery 313rd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.  He was posted to France on 7 January 1917.  On Christmas Day 1917, he was admitted to hospital with a fever and two days later was repatriated to the UK on Hospital Ship Essequibo. “On one occasion during 1917 the Essequibo was stopped by a German u-boat and searched to confirm it was a hospital ship, and then sent on her way. She was commissioned in 1915 as a Mail Ship, pressed into service as a hospital ship for the duration, then returned to her original role”.  Ernest was transferred to Leicester Military Hospital where he remained for 44 days, followed almost immediately by 30 days in hospital at Ripon with trench fever.

On 21 February 1918, he joined the Royal Artillery Command Depot, Ripon as a Gunner and a month later transferred to the Reserve Brigade as a Driver.  He was posted to the RFA Signaller School, Swanage on 3 June 1918.  He served in France again from 28 July 1918 to 2 January 1919. He was demobilised on 30 January 1919 and was awarded the British War and Allied Victory Medals.

Ernest married Ethel Woods, at Wolstanton, Staffs in 1920.  No children have been traced.  In 1939, Ernest and Ethel are living at 109 Williamson Street, Stoke-on-Trent. Ernest was a bricklayer and Ethel a grocery shopkeeper.  Ernest died in Stoke-on-Trent in 1969, aged 72 years.

Please get in touch if you able to tell us anything more about Ernest and his family.

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