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Frank Dewis Brown was born on the 30th July 1896, probably at Middle Rake in Glenridding, He was the eldest son of David Brown, a Lead Miner, and his wife Mary Jane (nee Dewis). He attended Patterdale School and was a member of the Patterdale Church choir. After leaving school, he initially worked as a Lead Ore Washer, aged 14 years, at the Greenside Mine but later worked as a Farm Labourer at Edenhall, near Penrith.
Probably in answer to Lord Kitchener’s fifth ‘Call to Arms’, a 19 year old Frank, went into Penrith on the 11th February 1915 and signed up to join the 2nd/4th Border Regiment. After less than a month of basic training in Blackpool, the battalion embarked for India. After an eventful journey including having to change troopships after a collision, he reached India at the end of March. Their final destination was the Ghorpuri Barracks, in Poona. Whilst serving in India, Frank would have served in Shankargarh, Nowshera, Peshawar and Sadar Garhi (for service on the Mohmand Blockade Line).
He is known to have suffered a short bout of Malaria in October 1916 and a more prolonged bout in September 1918 whilst in Nowshera. Upon returning to Peshawar, presumably still in a weakened state, he contracted influenza and was admitted to the hospital there on the 21st October but sadly his condition worsened and he died at 3:30pm on Wednesday the 30th October 1918 aged just 22 years. He is buried at Peshawar in modern day Pakistan. He is commemorated on The Delhi Memorial (India Gate), India, The Patterdale War Memorial, Glenridding Village Hall Roll of Honour (alongside his half brother Fred Dewis, and cousins Robert. David, William Brown) and at Kendal Parish Church, Border Regiment Chapel and Roll of Honour.
We think Frank’s father had died in Glenridding in August 1917. His mother died 19th Oct 1934 aged 65 and was buried at Patterdale. Frank’s older Sister Alvinza (born 1895) died in Dec 1948 aged 54, lived at 2 High Rake Glenridding His other sister Alice (born 1896) married John Lancelot Mounsey, an engineer from Liverpool. Frank’s youngest brother John (born 1905) lived at Stybarrow Terrace until his death on the 22nd Aug 1980.
For more information on Frank please visit the Patterdale Today History website.
Private Frank Dewis Brown
201572, ‘B’ Coy. 2nd/4th Bn., Border Regiment
Born 30th July 1896 Glenridding. Died 30th October 1918 Aged 22 in Peshawar, Pakistan.
Son of David and Mary Jane Brown (nee Dewis), of High Rake, Glenridding
Frank’s Death as reported in the Cumberland & Westmorland Herald 23rd November 1918
Two of Frank’s Uncles John and George Brown (on the right) with J Oglethorpe in the 1920s – Blacksmiths for Greenside Mine
This photograph is of Platoon No.6 of ‘B’ Company 2nd/4th Border Regiment whilst in India. Could that be Frank in the middle holding the Insignia?