George Maurice Gerald Gillett

Memorial: Thornbury - St Mary's Church

Regiment: Leicestershire Regiment

Medals: British War Medal, Next of Kin Memorial Plaque 1914 - 1921, Victory Medal

Rank and number: Captain

Parents: Reverend Hugh Gillett and the Honourable Mrs Evelyn Gillett

Marital status: Single

Home address: Thornbury House, Castle Street, Thornbury, Bristol

Pre-war occupation: Banker and business man

Date of birth: 17/10/1882

Place of birth: Compton, near Guildford, Surrey

Date of death: 26/09/1916

Buried/Commemorated at: Thiepval Memorial (Pier and Face 2 C and 3A.); Compton War Memorial

Age: 33

Further information:

Bronze Tablet and Wooden Memorial Board

George Maurice Gerald Gillett was born in Compton, near Guildford, in 1882, the third of five children of the Reverend Hugh Gillett and the Hon. Mrs Evelyn Gillett. He was brought up in Compton Rectory. In November 1911 Mrs Gillett inherited Thornbury House from her aunt, Geraldine Mundy. Her father, Reverend Maurice Fitzgerald Townsend Stephens, had been the Vicar of Thornbury from 1823 to 1872. The Gilletts came to Thornbury in 1912 and in January 1915 Hugh Gillett died. Two of his three sons were serving in the army at the time of his death

A newspaper report said that George had attended St Edward’s School in Oxford, where he had been in the school army corps, and that on leaving he had entered the Bank of England. He was a partner in a Leicestershire firm from 1912

George enlisted in December 1914, when he received his commission as a Lieutenant, 6th Battalion, Leicesters. This Battalion was formed in 1914 as part of Kitchener’s New Army. George was promoted to Captain in March 1915

From July 1916, during the First Battle of the Somme, the Battalion took part in various actions, including The Battle of Bazentin Ridge and the Battle of Flers-Courcelette. During the Battle of Morval the troops were trying to capture objectives that had not yet been secured in the earlier operations. A first assault on the village of Gueudecourt was unsuccessful but on the 26th September the attack was renewed and eventually the village was occupied by men from the Leicestershire Regiment. George was Killed in Action by an exploding shell. George has no known grave

The Thiepval Memorial, the Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave. Over 90% of those commemorated died between July and November 1916

George’s older brother, Charles Richard Gillett, was a regular soldier. Having attended the Royal Military College at Woolwich, he served from 1900, mainly in the Royal Garrison Artillery. He was in action in France from March 1915 to 11th November 1918, for most of the time as a Major, and was wounded once. He was mentioned in dispatches four times, once in 1916, twice in 1917 and once in 1918. The London Gazette in December 1916 reported that Charles had been awarded the French Croix de Guerre and on the 1st January 1917 that he had received the Distinguished Service Order. He retired from the army in 1937, having reached the rank of Colonel

By kind permission, this information is based on the following source(s):

Thornbury Roots Website. Thornbury and District Museum Research Group. Forces War Records and the CWGC