Whibley - Cliffe History

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    Alfred & Jack Whibley   

Alfred and Jack were born in 1891 and 1894 respectively to the President of the Co-Operative Society whose Store in the village is pictured above from the parish archives.
As two of four boys they lived at Homeside in Symonds Road, Cliffe. In 1911 Jack became an apprentice carpenter until war broke out. Jack, like many other young men, answered the call to arms being the first recruit to join Kitcheners Army from Cliffe. His elder brother Alfred, then a house painter, soon was to join him.
Jack enlisted into the Royal Engineers, 61st Field Company and served as a 2nd Corporal.
Jack was killed in action on 9th August 1915 and is remembered with honour at the Brandhoek Military Cemetery.
In the Chatham Rochester and Gillingham News his sacrifice was praised whilst the greatest sympathy is extended to his father who had just suffered the bereavement of his wife. At Jacks memorial service his father, other brothers, relatives and friends joined with other soldiers to mourn his passing. The Reverend A T Wallis took the service and Mr. James Anderson played the organ to great effect. 
Alfred was to join the Royal Fusiliers, 22nd Battalion. Alfred was killed in action on 17th February 1917 during the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line and is remembered with honour at the Serre Road Cemetery.
Their younger, Leo, who was 14 at the break of war, fell during WWII.
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