Arthur Apps was born in 1898 in Bishopsteignton and lived in Radway Hill, Bishopsteignton with his father John and his mother Emma Apps (née Parish).
From the information supplied by the 1911 census Arthur Apps was 13 years old at the time of the census. At this time he lived in Radway Hill, Bishopsteignton with his father John, aged 44 years, who was born in Bishopsteignton and was a farm labourer and his step-mother Anna who was born in Teignmouth and was 48 years old. John and Anna were married in 1905 when Arthur was approximately 7 years old.
Arthur had one brother (John Henry) and one step-brother (James) living at home with him at that time although the 1901 census shows an older brother, Frederick, who was born in Bishopsteignton in 1891. John Henry Apps was born in Bishopsteignton and was a farm labourer aged 18 years and James Apps was also born in Bishopsteignton aged 6 years.
Arthur’s birth mother Emma (née Parish) was born in Liverton but died in 1903 in the same month as two of her children. Emma died on 21st March 1903 aged 36 years along with another son, Frank, who died on 12th March 1903 aged 3 years, and Frederick, who died on 29th March 1903 aged 12 years. From the Medical Officer’s records, he visited the children in January and they were diagnosed with Scarletina (Scarlet Fever) which was a deadly illness at that time. It is likely that they died of this condition but this has not been verified.
According to the British Army World War 1 Pension Records, Arthur signed up for the army on 2nd November 1915. He signed up for Short Service which was for the duration of the war. His Service No was 20612. He joined the 1st Devon Regiment and he gave his age as 19 years and 6 months although from the 1911 census it would appear he was younger. He gave his occupation as gardener. He is described as being 5’2½” tall with blue eyes and dark hair. He weighed 8st 2lbs and was of slight build. His chest girth when expanded was 33″. His service records record his character as sober, steady and hardworking.
Death and Burial
Arthur was discharged from the army on 18th March 1917 as being no longer physically fit for service. He had received a gun shot wound to the back and right arm at Rouen on 3rd July 1916 and was sent back to England on 6th July. He finally died on 3rd November 1919 at Radway Court, Bishopsteignton from TB, almost exactly 4 years after joining up. His uncle, Henry Wyatt of 6, Verbena Terrace, Radway, Bishopsteignton was stated as being present at his death. It seems that his ashes were interred in St John’s but his grave was not designated a War Grave.
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