Dedicated to the memory of all the men and women of the South Staffordshire area who died during the two World Wars.
Charles Henry Preston was born at Church Aston, Newport, Shropshire, and was baptised at Church Aston on 18th April, 1886. He was the son of John Preston, a farmer, and Mary his wife. The family later moved to Wrottesley Road, Tettenhall (1901) and Tettenhall Wood (1911) where John traded as a hay merchant / hay trusser employing his sons in the business. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission record John's address as Holyhead Road, Oaken.
Charles enlisted in the 1/6 (Territorial Forces) Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment on its formation at Wolverhampton in August 1914. After training he was sent to France in June 1915 where he probably saw action during the German liquid fire attack at Hooge (30-31 July 1915) and the attack at the Hohenzollern Redoubt (13 October 1915). At the end of 1915 the 1/6th was sent to Egypt but returned to France almost immediately.
Charles is presumed to have been killed in action on 1st July, 1916, when the 1/6th were involved in a diversionary attack at Gommecourt - an attempt to protect the Northern Flank of the main attack on the Somme. After an initial advance hampered by smoke and mud, the attackers were cut off by the German artillery and destroyed.
Corporal Charles Henry Preston, 2479/240363, is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial. He was awarded the Victory and British War Medals and the 1914/15 Star.
This memorial has mostly been compiled from official sources. It would be good to be able to expand it with more personal material - memories, stories, photos, etc. If you have any suitable material or any corrections please contact Greg.