Charles George Arnell

Rank Lance Corporal
Service No TF/203561
Date of Death 04/11/1918
Age 38
Regiment/Service Middlesex Regiment 13th Battalion

Villers-Pol Communal Cemetery Extension. Villers-Pol is a village beyween Valenciennes and Le Quesnoy, France. It is located very close to the Belgium border. It was made by the 24th Guards and 2nd Divisions in November 1918. It commemorates 119 casualties.


Charles was born on 27th September 1880 and baptised on 6th December 1880 at St Marylebone, Westminster. The baptism register lists his father's occupation as 'hotel proprietor'. His parents were Charles Emmanuel (b.1845) and Emily Jane, nee Adams, (b.1849) Arnell.

At the time of the 1881 Census, the family were living at the Durrants Hotel, George Street London, W1, where Charles’ father was the hotel-keeper. This hotel is still in existence.

At the time of the 1891 Census, the family were living at the Queen’s Hotel, Melcombe Regis, Dorset, of which Charles’ father was the proprietor. Charles, had nine siblings, Catherine (b.1875), Gertrude (b.1876), William (b.1878), Ethel (b.1880), John (b.1883), Henry (b.1885), Herbert (b.1890) and Dorothy (b.1890).

Charles married Annie Theresa Hailey (b.1880) on 24th June 1900 at St Mary’s Willesden, in the London Borough of Brent. Charles’ occupation is listed as ‘labourer’ and his father’s as ‘clerk’.

At the time of the 1901 Census, Charles and Annie were living with another family, named Burns, in Willesden and Charles worked as a railway carriage cleaner. At the time of the 1911 Census, Charles was employed as a tramway construction welder. The family were living at 12 Hazel Road, Kensal Rise, London Borough of Brent. Charles and Annie had eight children, one of whom died. Those living with them were: Leslie (b.1902), Jack (b.1903), Dorothy (b.1904), Robert (b.1909), and Thomas (b.1910). It seems that Marjorie (1905-2013) was raised by her paternal grandparents in Kensal Rise, and Ethel (b.1907) was raised by her aunt and uncle, Peter and Louisa Lihou, of Lichfield Grove, Finchley.

Charles was killed in action on the first day of the Battle of Sambre. The regimental diary records that on that day his battalion drove the enemy “over the Aunelle River, near Le Coron and advanced through Wargnies Le Grand, during the afternoon. A line was established east of that village, considerable opposition being experienced from machine guns.”

Charles died just seven days before the end of the war and his wife was informed of his death on Armistice Day itself. Her address is recorded as: 5, Ingleway, North Finchley.