Walker, Edmund Basil (1888-1915)
Sherborne School, UK, Book of Remembrance for former pupils who died in the First World War, 1914-1918.
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Credit: Sherborne School Archives, Abbey Road, Sherborne, Dorset, UK, DT9 3AP.
Details: Edmund Basil Walker (1888-1915), born 8 August 1888 at Gillott Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham. Son of Rev. George Sherbrooke Walker, M.A., of March Rectory, Cambridge, formerly of Christ Church Vicarage, Summerfield, Birmingham.
Attended preparatory school in Portinscale.
Attended Sherborne School (Abbeylands) September 1902-July 1907; 6th form. Took part in the 1905 Sherborne Pageant www.flickr.com/photos/sherborneschoolarchives/15355367973...
Attended Emmanuel College, Cambridge; took Honours Degree in 1910; member of the Cambridge University Officers' Training Corps; and was the stroke of his College boat, and rowed at Henley Regatta in 1910.
Organising Secretary for the Great Scout Rally and Exhibition in Birmingham in 1913.
Member of the Cavendish Club (for social work).
Assistant master at Sherborne Preparatory School, Michaelmas term 1910- Lent term 1912.
On 9 January 1911, E.B. Walker of Acreman House, Sherborne, was initiated into the Old Shirburnian Lodge.
1912, obtained a commission in the Dorset Regiment.
WW1, 2nd Lieutenant in the Queen's Own (Royal West Kent Regiment), 1st Bn (attached in November 1914). Mentioned in Sir John French's despatches of 31 May 1915. Killed on 18 April 1915 undertaking the Senior Captain's duty with the machine guns on Hill 60, near Ypres.
Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery, VI. H. 14 www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/105304/WALKER,%20EDMU...
Sherborne Preparatory School roll of honour www.flickr.com/photos/sherborneschoolarchives/28163613991...
Sherborne School: War Memorial Staircase; Book of Remembrance; memorial plaque in the School chapel www.flickr.com/photos/sherborneschoolarchives/28668727024...; Abbeylands roll of honour.
At a meeting of the Old Shirburnian Lodge held on 13 July 1919, W.Bro. Colonel William Watts proposed that a small tablet be placed in the School Chapel in memory of two Lodge members who had lost their lives in the First World War, Francis Colin Staley and Edmund Basil Walker.
A friend, who was Chaplain at the Front, wrote to his parents after his death: 'Though his death and the manner of it was glorious, yet I have a sense of loss, both for myself and the country, of so great a nature that I tremble to think of what it must be for you... He was one of that large body of men that England could ill afford to lose, because they were so precious - yet had to lay upon the Altar of Freedom. And so may I sympathise most deeply with you all, assuring you that there are sad hearts at Sherborne and at Cambridge, and in Boulogne (there are several Emmanuel men here), to whom the announcement came as a real shock... If I find his resting place, and find there is anything to be done to make it more worthy of the memory of 'A very gallant gentleman,' be sure that I will do so.'
Another friend, working under the Red Cross in France, wrote: 'I heard the news first from Officers and men of his regiment, who came down wounded from that terrible fight for Hill 60. On all sides I heard mention of his bravery, from a sergeant of B Company which he commanded, and from one of the men who was with him on a maxim gun, after he had taken over the charge of their guns... Basil stood by the gun when it was on the top of the hill, directing operations, and every now and then putting his head up from cover, to fire at the Germans with his revolver. A private said 'Mr Walker was in the next machine gun section to me, and I was only fifteen yards from him. He was directing the first of the machine Maxim gun and was actually handling it at the time when he was shot in the throat and died instantly.'