Following on from The Forum’s Battle of Gaza exhibition in April, there are more chances to view the pop-up exhibition panels as they start their tour of the county – find out more about the exhibition and where to see it below.
The Battle of Gaza touring exhibition marks the centenary of the Second Battle of Gaza on 19 April 1917, in which hundreds of men serving in the Norfolk Regiment fought. It tells the story of how the Territorial Force soldiers were recruited and of their journey from Gallipoli to Gaza. It also demonstrates how the campaign in the Middle East impacted on the Norfolk Regiment.
Officers Mess, 1/5th Battalion, The Norfolk Regiment (Territorial Force) Palestine, 1917. Image courtesy of the Purdy Archive.
Ron Luton-Brown from Reepham has recently been in touch about some of the research he’s undertaken into two local men who fell on the same date during Battle of Gaza.
The first is Frederick Eke who was born in the spring of 1896, one of the younger children of Edward and Emily Eke from Whitwell Street. He was just 20 when he died and a Private in the 1/5th Battalion Norfolks service number 240792.
He is commemorated on the Jerusalem War Memorial
The War Memorial in Jerusalem. Image from @CWGC
The other Reepham boy who fell in Gaza was Edwin ‘Ted’ Harden who was born in the January Quarter of 1897 to Edwin and Louisa Harden. It is believed his father died in the Boer War and that Luisa subsequently remarried. Ted was the middle of three sons and again just 20 at his death.
Edwin ‘Ted’ Harden
He too is commemorated on the Jerusalem War Memorial.
Sadly for Luisa is would appear that her second husband, Jesse Hall, also died during World War One.
Reepham Church exterior from @PictureNorfolk
Both Ted and Frederick will be remembered in Reepham on 19th April – exactly 100 years after their deaths. They will be prominently featured in the church Memorial Book and this can be viewed in chancel of St Michael’s which is open every day.
Interior of St Michael’s Church Reepham from @PictureNorfolk
The Battles of Gaza are being commemorated in Norwich with an exhibition at the Forum. This is open daily until May 4th.