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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

New CWGC Commemoration

Terry Denham

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CWGC added the following 'new' WW1 casualty to its Debt of Honour database today - Thursday 25th June.

Lt Stuart Underwood BAILY

Royal Engineers

Died 15.09.18 Age 32

Buried: Fairlight (St Andrew) Churchyard, Sussex, UK


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May He Rest In Peace

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Lieutenant Stuart Underwood BAILY. 490th (Kent) Field Company, Royal Engineers. Formerly known as the 1st (Home Counties) Field Company, Royal Engineers. Died (Still in service) 15 September 1918 aged 32 years at 6 Dane Road, St Leonards-on-Sea, Sussex. Eldest son of Mr Cornwallis Stuart Baily (Solicitor) and Marion Baily (nee Underwood) of 6 Dane Road, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex. His father Cornwallis Baily was present at his sons death (as evidenced by DC). Buried Fairlight Churchyard, Fairlight, Hastings, East Sussex. Grave reference – Not known.

Stuart was a serving commissioned officer in the Royal Engineers (R.E) at the time of his death therefore he is automatically entitled to an official commemoration. Also in addition to this evidence his death certificate (DC) clearly shows he died from causes directly attributable to the war namely –

“Sarcoma and the hardships & wounds received during campaigning (a clear reference to his war service)”.

Educated King’s School, Canterbury, Kent (1901 – 1903). His name appears on the school civic war memorial there. After leaving Canterbury in 1903 Stuart went to study Locomotive Engineering at Glasgow University, Glasgow, Scotland where he remained until 1906. In 1910 Stuart left the UK for Canada and went to work on the Grand Trunk Railway at Monteal, Canada.

Upon the outbreak of war in August 1914, Stuart gallantly answered the call of the mother country and returned to fight. Stuart enlisted into the Sussex Regiment with a contingent drawn mainly from the Hastings area of Sussex. On 2 March 1915 Stuart was commissioned into the 8th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment as a Second Lieutenant. Landed France 9 March 1915. On 21 June 1915 the 8th Middlesex Regiment was transferred to 25th Brigade, 8th Division. About this time Stuart transferred to the Royal Engineers (probably as a consequence of his Railway Engineering Degree). He was appointed an officer in 490th (Home Counties) Field Company, Royal Engineers. Landed France July 1915. It is thought that Stuart was used principally in military railway matters.

The 490th (Home Counties) Field Company, Royal Engineers saw considerable action throughout France and Belgium during the Great War. On 25 September 1915 the unit was in action at Bois Grenier near Armentieres. By June 1916 the 490th were in the line at Mazingarbe south of Bethune on the Somme. In July 1916 the 490th moved to Albert on the Somme in readiness for the forthcoming major attack on 1 July 1916. On the first day the 490th supported the attack near Albert. By 29 October 1916 the 490th was at Longueval providing support to infantry units preparing to attack the Le Transloy Ridge. They remained on the Somme until June 1917 at which time the 490th moved to Ypres in Belgium.

on 1 July 1917 Stuart was promoted full Lieutenant and later that same month was awarded a GOC’s certificate of Commendation for gallant conduct and coolness under fire for laying track east of Ypres whilst under heavy fire (31 July 1917 – 1 August 1917).

On 11 August 1917 Stuart was at Dominion Camp near Ypres. The camp came under very heavy enemy shelling at 1500 hours that day and Stuart was severely wounded by shrapnel. Stuart was evacuated through the medical evacuation chain to the UK where he was admitted into hospital for treatment. At some stage of his treatment the military doctors diagnosed a cancer! It was documented in his service papers that this cancer was directly attributable to his war service and to the wounds he had sustained at Ypres from enemy shelling.

Stuart Died of wounds 15 September 1918 at St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex. His Sergeant Major wrote of his death – “We are all very sorry to hear about Lieutenant Baily. He was one of the finest officers, a born leader and one to inspire confidence in all under him; he is of the type that can sorely be spared.”

He was buried in Fairlight Churchyard, Fairlight, Hastings, Sussex

Note: the Army List 1917 clearly shows him as a serving Royal Engineers Territorial Force Officer (Copy enclosed). The entry clearly shows he was commissioned on 2 March 1915 as a Second Lieutenant and was promoted Full Lieutenant 31 January 1916.



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I visited Fairlight Churchyard last week in order to pay my respects to Lt. Baily, but I could not find his grave.

I assume therefore that there must be some delay between a casualty being accepted by the CWGC and a headstone being erected.

On reflection this must be the case, especially where names are to be added to a memorial.

What sort of period elapses before a stone is erected in these cases?


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It took about 12 months for one of my Stockport chaps. It is possible that whilst it is known that Baily is buried there, the exact grave location may have been lost and, therefore, the headstone will be erected somewhere in the plot marked as "known to buried...."


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He already has a private headstone.

I photographed it the day after he was accepted.

Hang on and I will post a copy.

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Here he is.

His grave is under some very large overhanging trees so it is very dark at that spot.

If you want a larger pic so that you can read the inscription, send me a PM with your email address


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He's at the bottom of the old part of the churchyard under the tree line that separates it from the new portion.

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I have a good quality photo of him wearing his R.E No1's uniform if anyone wants a copy? It's in PDF so I can't attatch it here...

I attended King's School Canterbury in the 1970's. I obtained his name after trancribing the school war memorial there in 2006. Then I came across a thread on GWF relating to him. After a considerable delay, I finally submited his case to the MoD last year as a joint submission.


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