Thomas Charles Herbert Britt

June 16, 2015

BRITT, Thomas Charles Herbert- – – – – – SPC ?

The College could find no record of the dates of his attendance at St Patrick’s.

Thomas Charles Herbert Britt was no known relation to Isaac Reay Britt (SPC ?) who also enlisted and was killed in action.

DoB:– – 1890, Kew, VIC

Father:- – John Britt

Mother:– – Ellen Louisa, nee Mays, of 699 High Street, East Kew, VIC

Service No:– 2127

Rank:– – Private

Unit:- – 6th Company, Australian Machine Gun Corps

Thomas Britt enlisted on 15 September, 1914 in Melbourne. He was a 24 year old labourer, with a fair complexion, brown eyes and brown hair. He was five feet four and three quarter inches tall. His next of kin was his mother who was widowed by the time of Tom’s enlistment.

Private Thomas Britt embarked at Melbourne on the Themistocles on 22 December 1914, arriving at Alexandria, Egypt. From there he went on to Turkey, taking part in the Gallipoli Campaign in April 1915. He survived Gallipoli, and returned to Alexandria on 7 Jan 1916. He then proceeded to Pozieres, France where as a result of bravery shown, he was recommended for and received the Military Medal.

-‘During operations at Pozieres 25th to 27th July 1916, both these men, who were stretcher bearers showed great bravery and devotion to duty in attending to the wounded and removing them from the firing line. The stretcher they were using was destroyed by a shell, after which they continued to remove wounded in a waterproof sheet, until another stretcher was obtained from the Dressing Station.

In the sector in which these men were working, the wounded were lying in the open exposed to close range rifle fire and machine gun fire, and were rescued at great risk.’

Britt was transferred in March 1917 to the 6th Brigade Machine Gun Company, in France. It was on 4 October 1917 that he was wounded at Pozieres, France in the hip joint and face, and a few days later, on 11 October, died from those wounds.

A witness to what happened was Infantryman, A J Fraser. He related that Private Britt was taking up rations to the lines.

-‘-¦ He reached his destination all right and then he made his way back with another man named Nash, and as they came along they were both struck by shell fragments and severely wounded -¦’

A letter from the Officer in Charge at the 17th Casualty Clearing Station stated that Britt,

– -‘-¦ was admitted to this Hospital suffering from severe multiple shell wounds and in a very critical condition. His condition did not improve and it is with regret I have to inform you of his death which occurred at 11pm on the evening of the 11.10.17 as a result of these wounds. He was buried the following day in the Soldiers’ Cemetery near to this Hospital, his grave being duly marked and registered -¦’

Private Thomas Charles Herbert Britt, MM, is buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Belgium.