Horace Kemp

Charles and Maria Kemp lived near the Turnpike in Saxlingham Thorpe. They had eight children. During his lifetime Charles worked as a farm labourer, a game keeper and a teamster on a farm.

Horace was born 26 June 1889 in Saxlingham Thorpe. He was baptised in Newton Flotman Church on 10 August 1890.

His siblings were ;

Ernest born 1882

Leonard born 1883

Lily Annette born 1886, died 1886

Archibald born 1888 (He is listed as having learning difficulties)

Eva born 1891

Elsie born 1894

Thurzey born 1898, died 1903

In 1911 Horace was still living at home along with his siblings except for Eva who was working in London as a domestic maid. Ernest was a teamster on a farm like his father, Leonard was a farm labourer, Archibald a market gardener’s labourer and Elsie a children’s nurse.

Horace was working as a grocer’s assistant.

Horace became a private in the Norfolk Regiment. His service numbers were 1102 and 200031. It is not known when he enlisted but prior to the First World War he was in the 1/4th Territorial Battalion Norfolk Regiment. His service records have not survived.

 As soon as war was declared on 5th August 1914 they were mobilised. They spent the next few months training in Essex and Suffolk. In July 1915 they embarked on S.S Aquitania from Liverpool to the Dardenelles. They arrived there in August 1915.

Horace was part of this as the medal roll index states that he entered hostilities on 6 August 1915 and that he served in the Balkans.

The countryside in which they were fighting was difficult with high hedges, deep ditches and forest in the background which gave cover for snipers. There was also a problem with a lack of water for the troops. By September the number of men in the Battalion fit to fight had been reduced to 376 with 218 in hospital, many suffering from dysentery. In November there was a great blizzard in the area and by December the number of fit men had gone down to 170.This was due to illness and the adverse weather and living conditions. On 15 December the Battalion retreated and left for Egypt.

There they remained during 1916 defending the Suez Canal. In 1917 they were involved in fighting in Palestine which resulted in the taking of Jerusalem on 9th December 1917. They remained in Palestine during 1918 and in September of that year moved northwards ending up in Beirut.

He became an acting corporal but no other information about his war service is known.

After the war he returned to Saxlingham Thorpe.

In 1919 he married Annie Fish, born 28 June 1890. In 1911 she was working in the dairy of White Horse Farm, Tasburgh. Her mother, a widow was running the farm. In 1911 Annie had a daughter, Freda May Fish who later became known as Freda Kemp. In 1917 she had a son Eric James Fish who was adopted by a family in Northrepps..

Horace and Annie had a daughter Thirza Marie born in January 1922.

By 1925 the family were living at Plumstead Cottage, Baconsthorpe, and were still in the village in 1927.

In 1939 the family were living at Genesta, Benfleet, Essex. Horace was working as a private chauffeur and gardener.

They moved to live in Gorleston and Horace worked at the Holiday Camp

Working at Gorleston Holiday Camp.

Horace in later life

He died in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire in 1969.



England & Wales, Birth, marriages, death index 1837-2005

British Army Medal Roll Index cards 1914-1920

1939 Register – www.findmypast.co.uk

UK Census collection

 Norfolk Electoral Rolls, Absent Voters List, Saxlingham Nethergate


Norfolk Electoral Rolls, 1922- 1927

Norfolk, Church of England Diocesan Baptismal Records, Newton Flotman

The History of the Norfolk Regiment. Vol.II.  – F. Loraine Petre. Norwich: Jarrold and Son Ltd. The Empire Press

Photographs from George/ Wilson; Marsh Family Tree.

More information from Kemp and Fish family trees. www.ancestry.co.uk

If anyone has any photographs or information about this person please contact me. Email jan@janmfox.co.uk