Wallace John Brighton

Wallace was baptised in St. Mary’s Church Saxlingham Nethergate on 5 December 1897. His parents were Barnabas and Eliza Brighton. His date of birth was 15 October 1897.

He had two sisters and a brother.

Althea born 1892

Leslie Barnabas born 1895

Adelaide born 1896.

Wallace Brighton, 1921

He lived with his parents until he joined the army near Saxlingham Green. His father was a bricklayer.

Wallace enlisted in the 15th Battalion, Welsh Regiment but it is not known when, as the records have not survived. It is known from the medals that he received that he was not in France in 1915.

The regiment fought in France, and in 1918 was involved with the Battles of the Somme and the Hindenburg Line. It is presumed that Wallace took part in some of these battles as he was mentioned in despatches. His name appears in the Gazette of 8 July 1919, page 8697. It is not known what he did to be mentioned.

He returned to live in Saxlingham Nethergate. He played cricket for the village and was part of the cricket team which won the Soames cup in 1921. Local cricket teams competed yearly for this cup.

Saxlingham Cricket Team, 1921. Wallace is fourth from the right.

In 1922 Wallace married Nora Blanche Sparkes. She was born 13 September 1899 and her family lived in Saxlingham.

They had one child, Jennifer D Brighton born October 1929. She never married and lived in Hellesdon, Norwich.

In 1939 Wallace was living with Nora in the house in the Street between  the village shop, where his brother Leslie lived and worked, and the Post Office. The cottage is now known as Apple Tree Cottage.( Apple Tree cottage can be seen in the heading, situated behind the war memorial and next to the old shop). Wallace was working as a chauffeur and handyman.

Wallace worked as chauffeur and handyman for many years for Mrs. Campbell Steward. She lived in the Old Hall next to the Church and had been a widow since 1917. She owned many of the farms and houses in the village.

Wallace died December 1984 aged 87 years. His wife died 8 January 1994 at 87 Bernham Road, Hellesden, the home of her daughter.



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

UK Census Collection

British Army Medal Roll Index cards, 1914-1920

1939 Register- www.findmypast.co.uk

Norfolk Electoral Roll, Absent Voters List, Saxlingham Nethergate, Norfolk 1918-1920

England & Wales, National Probate Calendar 1858-1995


London Gazette, 8 July 1919

Photograph of Saxlingham Cricket Team from family photograph album of Edna Carr