Arthur James Hoare

Rank Private
Service No G/20633
Date of Death 15/09/1916
Age 39
Regiment/Service Middlesex Regiment 23rd Battalion
Memorial Thiepval Memorial. This memorial to the missing of the Somme bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave. Over 90% of those commemorated died between July and November 1916.


Arthur was born in 1877 to James Thomas Hoare (b.1851) and his wife Selina (1857-1936), nee Gudgeon, of Swan Lane, Finchley. Arthur had a total of ten siblings, Amy Susan (b.1879), Ernest Albert (1881-1951), Alice Dora (b.1884), William Frederick (b.1886), Edith Janet (1888-1982), Samuel Louis (b.1890), Alfred John (b.1892), George (b.1895), Elena (b.1897) and Edward (b.1903).

To accommodate their increasingly large family, the Hoare’s moved to 4 St John’s Row, Friern Lane, Whetstone, where Arthur worked as a nursery lad and later a grocer’s assistant. His father was now an agricultural labourer, his sister Amy was a domestic housemaid and William worked as a butcher’s assistant.

In 1911, Arthur’s father (now a jobbing gardener, aged 62) and mother were living at 1 St John’s Row with their two youngest children. Samuel (now 20 years old and a domestic gardener) also lived at home with his wife of less than a year, Kate, and their unnamed child who is 1 month old.

Arthur Hoare married Edith Frances Pyne (b.1883) in the summer of 1906. At the time of 1911 Census, the couple were living at 119 Station Road, Finchley, and had three children: Frances (b.1907), Winifred (b.1908) and Dorothy (b.1910). Evidence quoted below indicates that they had a further two children. Arthur was employed as a milk carrier’s assistant.

The 23rd Battalion Middlesex Regiment (2nd Football Battalion) arrived on the Somme at the end of August 1916 and served in Delville Wood. On 15th September 1916, the first day of the battle of Flers-Courcelette, which marked the beginning of the third period of the Battle of the Somme, the battalion was in support for the attack on the Switch Line, suffering 195 casualties, including Arthur, who was killed in action, and the battalion’s commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel William Ash, a Finchley resident, who is also remembered on the St Luke’s memorial. It is historically noteworthy for being the first time that tanks were used in battle.

The St Luke’s Finchley monthly magazine of December 1916, records that Arthur ‘lived at 119 Station Road, and previous to his enlisting was a Milk Carrier. He leaves a wife and five young children.’