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11/52 Trooper Albert Edward Gascoigne - Wellington Mounted Rifles
 
Albert Edward Gascoigne’s birth was registered for the quarter of June 1888, and in his enlistment papers is simply
April 1888,[i]  Sculcoates an East Riding of Yorkshire. Prior to immigrating to New Zealand Albert had served his three years compulsory military training (1911 – 1914) with the Coldstream Guards.
 
 
11/52 Trooper Albert Edward Gascoigne c1914
(in uniform of Coldstream Guards)
 
 
 
In New Zealand Albert had signed up, on 13th July 1914, for the Army Reserves serving
with the 6th (Manawatu) Wellington Mounted Rifles.
 
11/52 Trooper AlbertOn 13th August 1914 Albert Edward Gascoigne enlisted in the NZEF
he was a single man employed as a butcher at Porirua Mental Hospital. Albert Edward Gascoigne entered camp as 11/52 Trooper Gascoigne, 6th (Manawatu) Wellington Rifles and was allocated to the Machine Gun section. Also in the machine-gun section were two other
men who had enlisted from Porirua Hospital 11/26 Trooper Walter Cobb and 11/713 Trooper John William Reichart.[ii]
 
The Wellington Mounted Rifles sailed from Wellington, on 16th October 1914, for Egypt. On arrival in Egypt the Wellington Mounted Rifles with other New Zealand and Australian mounted units began training for the defence of Egypt. In April 1915 the Wellington Mounted Rifles units remained in Egypt while the New Zealand infantry regiments and support units sailed for the Gallipoli landings. The heavy loss of men at Gallipoli meant a need for replacements and as 11/24 Lance Corporal Hector Craw[iii]  noted in his diary on 5th May 1915:
 
‘Heard rumours about going to Dardanelles as infantry leaving horses here.
The rumours confirmed going Saturday.’
 
The Wellington Mounted Rifles (WMR) sailed on the 9th May 1915 arriving off the Dardanelles on the 11th May 1915
when they landed at ANZAC Cove. ‘On the 13th May 1915 the New Zealand Mounted Rifles are ordered to take over
No4 Section of the Anzac Cove defensive perimeter – a line which includes positions on Russell’s Top and Walker’s Ridge. The WMR goes into the line on Walker’s Ridge relieving the Nelson and Deal Battalions holding it.’[iv] It was in this line, on 20th May 1915 that 11/52 Trooper Gascoigne was killed.
 
Trooper Gascoigne was buried near Walkers Ridge then later,
at the end of war, Trooper Gascoigne was relocated to
grave 11.A.4. Walker’s Ridge Cemetery, Anzac Cove.
 
 
 
 
 
11/52 Trooper A E Gascoigne’s grave at Gallipoli
 
 
 
 
 
References:
Archway Archives New Zealand – Military records: 11/52 Trooper Albert Edward Gascoigne
Papers Past Online
UK BDM online
Wellington Mounted Rifles History online
 
Photos:
11/52 Trooper Albert Edward Gascoigne: Auckland Cenotaph
11/52 Trooper Gascoigne’s grave: New Zealand War Graves Project
Background Anzac landing postcard; private collection
 
[i] Archway Archives New Zealand – Military records: 11/52 Albert Edward Gascoigne
[ii] Departure of Wellington Mounted Rifles (27th August 1914) Evening Post
[iii] Personal Diary – 11/24 Lance Corporal Eric Hector Dunstan Craw B Squadron, 6th Manawatu, Wellington Mounted Rifles.
[iv] May 1915 Wellington Mounted Rifles: History Online
 
 
YA
NANZAC Cover April 1915
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