Private Stephen Leaman

Service Army Service No. 21134
Rank Private
Regiment:Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 14th Battalion
Date of Birth: 01/01/1887
Born Dawlish
Date of Death: 06/10/1918
Memorial: Dawlish Memorial Inscription LEAMAN S. SNIPER R.W.F.

Service History

Stephen Leaman enlisted in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 14th Battalion, at Porth, Glamorgan, and is said to have been trained as a sniper in the signalling section.

The 14th (Service) Battalion was part of the New Army
It was formed at Llandudno on 2 November 1914.
Moved to Winchester in August 1915 and landed in France in December 1915.

The Medal Rolls Index Card shows that Stephen Leaman arrived in France on 12 December 1915 and was thus awarded the 1915 Star, as well as the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. He was twice wounded before being killed in action.

Association with Dawlish

Stephen’s grandfather Edward Leaman (1831-1916) was born in South Brent and was employed as a stoker at a Gas Works in Plymouth in 1861, where his first two children had been born. They were William Thomas, 3, born in Stonehouse and Alice, 1, born in Plymouth.  By 1871 they were settled at 2 Church Street, Torquay and Edward was working as a shop porter. His wife Mary Elizabeth had seven children.

William T Leaman (1858-1933) married Ellen Allford (1855-1910) in the June quarter of 1876. Ellen was one of seven children of Job and Susan Allford living at Hele Cottage, St Marychurch in 1861.  Ellen married in Dawlish at age 20.

William Thomas Leaman was an errand boy in 1871, but he then moved to Dawlish and followed his father as a stoker at the Gas Works in Dawlish by 1881, where he appears to have lived with his wife and first children. Stephen Leaman’s birth was registered in Newton Abbot district in the March quarter of 1887.

Stephen Leaman married Elizabeth Owen in Pontypridd in September 1910, soon after the death of his mother. They had a daughter in March 1915, Edith M Leaman .

It appears, from the report in the Dawlish Gazette, that Stephen had taken work in the coal mines in South Wales.

Devon Roll of Honour Leaman, Stephen, Pte, R Welsh Fus, 6th Oct 1918, France
Additional Information Commonwealth War Graves Site

Next of Kin: Elizabeth Leaman, widow
Last Known Address: Porth, Glamorgan

Royal Welsh Fusiliers, cap badge. An exploding grenade over the Prince of Wales Feathers.

Abercynon ca 1920

Vis-en-Artois Memorial, courtesy CWGC website

The Long, long trail.

Free Birth, Marriage Death refs

The Dawlish Gazette (see Documents)

from subscription sites:

Census data

UK, Army Register of Soldiers’ Effects

Family trees (Ancestry) – Cox and Leaman trees

Probate register – William T Leaman

British Army, WW1 Medal Rolls Index Cards

UK, Soldiers died in the Great War