All text and images © Helvellyn Consulting 2016
Private Herbert Ernest Tabberer
118271 Machine Gun Corps
Born 19th Nov 1890 St Johns in the Vale. Died Dec 1976 aged 86 in Devon
Son of James William Waring and Emma Louisa (nee Bott) Tabberer
Player for Ullswater Football Club
A machine gun crew of the Border Regiment on the North West Frontier in 1919
Herbert’s Medal Index Card
The Ullswater Rovers Football Team in 1914. Herbert is shown standing in the third row, the second man in from the left as you look at the picture, in between John Birkett and John Chugg. His school friend Thomas Watson, who died in the war, is sitting on the floor at the right of William Stockdale who has the cup (sitting to his right). William was also killed in action. The other team members are named on our Ullswater Football Team page, including Bernard Mulligan, the goalkeeper at the back of the photo, who also died in the fighting.
Herbert Ernest Tabberer was born on the 19th Nov 1890 in St Johns in the Vale, and baptised in Threlkeld on the 1st Feb 1891. He was the second son of James William Waring Tabberer and his wife Emma Louisa (nee Bott). Ernest’s parents had both been born in Leicestershire, where they married in 1881 while James was a smith working in the cotton mills.
They had two children whilst still living in Leicestershire, James William (in 1882) and Florence Lilian in 1884. At some point between then and 1890 they moved to Cumbria, and when Herbert was born the family was living in St Johns in the Vale and James was working as a blacksmith.
At some point in the 1890s Herbert’s mother died and by 1901 his fatter was working as a Foreman in the granite Quarry at Threlkeld, and his brother James Junior was working as an Engine Fitter. They were quite probably working alongside William Watson, the father of Thomas Watson, who was born in the same year as Herbert in Threlkeld. In July 1903 Herbert’s sister married Joseph Crooks, and just three months later Herbert’s eldest brother James died, aged just 21. The following year on the 16th April 1904 Herbert’s father James married again, to a local girl, Sarah Jane Lamb. By 1911 Herbert was living with his father and step mother at 2 Primrose Terrace, Threlkeld. His father was still a foreman at the granite quarry and 20 year old Herbert was also working at the quarry as a Stoker.
We know that Herbert was also keen on football, and alongside his childhood friend Thomas Watson played for the Ullswater Football Club in Patterdale. He is featured on the photo shown below, taken after the teamtriumphed in the replay against Appleby in the Penrith and District Cup of April 1914, which Ullswater won 3-
We’re not sure exactly when Herbert joined the army, although it’s quite possible he joined up with many of his team mates early on. He may well have started his military career in the Border Regiment, but ended up in the Machine Gun Corps, which was formed in October 1915. From his medal card it seems that he was posted to India, possibly alongside the Border Regiment which included other Patterdale men such as Jack Bell. We know that he served in India and Afghanistan, winning the North West Frontier Service clasp to his India General Service medal. This means that Herbert took part in the Third Anglo-
Sadly we do not know much about what happened to Herbert after the war, except that he died in Plymouth, Devon in 1976 at the age of 86. His father died in September 1931 in Cockermouth.
If you can add anything to the story of Herbert of his family please contact us.