Pte Craigen Innes Charles

  • Date of birth: 04/07/1892
  • Place of birth: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, United Kingdom
  • Date of death: 15/12/1917
  • Place of death: Broodseinde, Belgium
  • Cause of death: Killed in action (K.I.A.)
  • Age: 25
  • Profession: Motorman Street Railway
  • Country: England, United Kingdom
  • Rank: Private
  • Service number: 203214
  • Enlistment date: Unknown
  • Enlistment place: Bridlington, East Riding Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
  • Last known unit: King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, 1/4th Bn.
  • Force: British Expeditionary Force


Additional information

Private Innes Charles Craigen was born in 1892 in Cambridge as one of six children of James and Mary Ann Craigen. He married his wife named Mabel in 1914 at the age 22 and had a daughter named Mabel Marie. He worked as a tram conductor before he enlisted in the army. He first joined the Yorkshire Regiment and was later transferred to the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, 1/4th Battalion, part of the 148th Infantry Brigade of the 49th Division. He was killed in action on the 15th of December 1917.

On the 9th of December, the Brigade of Private Craigen received an operation order to relieve another the 146th Brigade on the 11th in the front line. So, on the 11th his Battalion moved from Halifax Camp (H.19.b.1.3) to entrain at Vlamertinghe en route for Ypres. At 1.30 p.m. his battalion arrived in the line without any casualties. His brigade had to relieve the 146th Brigade in the right sub-sector of the Divisional Front which ran from D.29.d.4.1. to D.23.b.0.3. The Battalion dispositions were as follows: “W” Company in the right front line, “Y” Company in the left front line, “Z” Company in right support and “X” Company in left support. On the 14th the supporting Companies “X” and “Z” relieved “W” and “Y” Companies in the front line.

Private Craigen was presumably in “Z” Company, because on 15th December an enemy shell fell in a post held by “Z” Company in the early mourning which caused the death of a lieutenant and two other soldiers. Since Private Craigen was reported ‘killed in action’ on the 15th, he was probably one of these two soldiers who died during the shell attack. He was buried just behind the front line at D.22.c.9.9. (near Zonnebeke), but his body was later (mid 1920) exhumed and reburied in the grave he lies today in the Passchendaele New British Cemetery.