Private Avard L. Dimock (1897-1918)

Avard Longley Dimock came from the community of Mount Uniake [map] which is about 25 mile North of Halifax in Nova Scotia, Canada. Avard was one of eight children, and he was an engineer by trade. Blue eyes, brown hair and 5′ 7″, Avard was slim and slight of frame (9st 4lb). Census records suggest that the family emigrated in the 1850s from UK to Canada. On 14th May 1917 Avard attested to join the Canadian Over-Seas Expeditionary Force (C.E.F.) and was assigned Private 2005068 AL. Dimock. The WWI Service Record indicates that Avard was part of a recruitment to reinforce the Army Medical Corps. On 22nd June 1917 Private Dimock embarked at Halifax and travelled with 524 other men aboard the ocean liner SS Justicia to Liverpool UK, disembarking on 4th July 1917. He was posted to join the 21st Canadian Reserve Infantry Battalion for training at Camp Bramshott in Hampshire. 29th December 1917, Private Dimock transferred to the Canadian Forestry Corps (C.F.C.) which meant being stationed initially at the Base Depot C.F.C. Sunningdale. From 11th January 1918 he was on command to District 53 cutting timber in the East of England, attached to the 126th, 135th, 136th and then back with the C.F.C. 126th Company. The military service record shows that on 7th June 1918 Private Dimock was granted permission to marry, which happened on 19th July 1918 – his wife, Rose Ellen Wootton of Arthur Street in Ampthill, Bedfordshire. Avard and Rose Summer 1918 – the 126th Company moved its operation from Ampthill to Thetford Forest. On 25th October 1918 Private Dimock was admitted to Thetford Military Hospital. The medical record states

“Apparently ordinary attack of influenza – developed bronchitis 28/10/18. Bronchopneumonia 29/10/18. Rapidly became unconscious and died 31/10/18″

Avard Dimock B2522-S043.pdf The body of 2005068 Private Avard L. DIMOCK (*21yrs) was brought back to Ampthill for burial at St. Andrew’s Church on 4th November 1918, where he rests. The gravestone – a stone cross – was made by Thomas Wildman of Church Street, Ampthill and is signed. *Avard’s year of birth is recorded as 1897 and 1898. Age appears as 24yrs on the headstone Avard’s Will of 14th May 1917 bequeathed his personal estate to his father, George Dimock. Mrs Rose Ellen Dimock received a widow’s war gratuity of $180. Records show that in 1922 Rose Ellen Dimock and Avard’s mother, Mrs Jennie Dimock (1866-1948), were each issued with the Memorial Cross – a sterling silver Greek cross (engraved) on a purple ribbon for wearing around the neck. As the next-of-kin, Rose Ellen also received the phosphor bronze memorial plaque and the scroll. Avard Dimock is remembered on The Alameda Cenotaph and on a memorial in Ampthill Methodist Church – a large brass plate Inside the Nave on the East wall. The Memorial Plate is inlaid with enamel and measures about a yard square. It was unveiled on 5, December 1920 and restored in 2019 Rose Ellen Dimock (1886-1969) stayed in Ampthill. The 1939 Register records her as living at 23, Arthur Street. Rose did not re-marry. Headstone – repair and rededication Over the years the gravestone weathered and sustained damage. Avard Dimock grave damaged (2) In 2017, as part of the WWI Centenary, Cllr Simon Peacock (Ampthill Mayor) championed repairing the headstone, which Neville Funeral Service generously undertook as a community contribution. The headstone was lifted and restored in time for Remembrance Sunday 2017 when a representative of the Canadian High Commission attended for a service of rededication. 2017-11-28 18.17.31 Source:  The Bedfordshire Standard; Bedfordshire Times. The original broadsheet is part of the Bedfordshire & Luton Archive. Ampthill Parish Magazine Commonwealth War Graves Commission RBL Roll of Honour Ancestry.com The National Archives Library and Archives Canada British Newspaper Archive Ampthill’s Fallen – by John Hele (2014) Www.bedfordshireregiment.co.uk #IWMSTORIES Text and images copyright S.Hartley (2015-)

1 thought on “Private Avard L. Dimock (1897-1918)

  1. Pingback: WWI – Ampthill Command Depot in Ampthill Park – the Camp Diary, October 1918 | Tommy's Footprints…..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s