Friday, 15 April 2016

Accidental Death of a Luton Soldier

Rifleman Augustus Tennyson Bruton

Saturday 15th April 1916: Rifleman Augustus Tennyson Bruton of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps has been buried today at East Hyde Churchyard. Rifleman Bruton’s coffin was carried on a gun carriage covered by the Union Jack. Men from the Royal Field Artillery Training Camp at Biscot and a firing party from the 2/4th Leicestershire Regiment. Full military honours had also been accorded as his coffin was taken from the hospital at Warrington where he died to the station, and wreaths were sent by the hospital staff. Twenty one year old Rifleman Bruton had formerly been a scholar and chorister at East Hyde Church. He had worked at the Luton Hoo garden for four years, and before enlisting he was employed as gardener by Mr. Brown of Highfield, Luton.

The young man died from injuries sustained due to a most unfortunate accident. He had joined the army in November 1915 and was sent to Andover for training. After nine weeks he was sent to France. He was resting after six days in the trenches when the accident happened. He was one of a party receiving bombing instruction on March 2nd when a bomb exploded while the instructor was holding it. Rifleman Bruton’s left foot was badly injured. After five days in hospital in France he was repatriated to the Lord Derby War Hospital at Winwick, Warrington. On April 9th, as he was busy with his duties at church as Parish Clerk of East Hyde, Mr. Bruton received an urgent telegram summoning him to his son’s bedside. With the help of the Vicar and Lady Wernher the parents were taken by motor car to Bedford, where they caught an early train to Warrington. They were able to be with their son for his last hours, before he died at 8 p.m. on Monday 10th. His body was returned to Luton on Thursday,

Source: Luton News, 20th April 1916

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