SELWYN Christopher Wakefield

Known information

Christopher Wakefield Selwyn, his twin brother Arthur Penrose Selwyn and his half-brother George Selwyn all died in the First World War. They were among six sons of a former headmaster of Uppingham School. Christopher and Arthur were born in Ambleside on 9 August 1889 to Edward and Lucy Selwyn and brought up in Uppingham. They went to Uppingham School along with an older and a younger brother. Their father retired in 1907, moving his family to Hindhead, near Haslemere, Surrey. Their mother had died and their father was now married to Julia Maude, with whom he had another son, George. Christopher worked for five years at the Midland Railway Company's works in Derby and then from 1912 for two years in Canada, in Montreal with the Canadian Pacific railway as a locomotive engineer and in Alberta as a lay missionary. In August 1914 he enlisted in the Canadian Infantry and with the rank of Lance Corporal  he arrived in England in the autumn with 1st Canadian Contingent. In December 1914 he was granted a commission in 1/5th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment as a Second Lieutenant and went abroad in February 1915. On 15 May the battalion had taken up new positions on the slopes of Mount Kemmel near Zillebeke. An account in The Fifth Leicestershire by JD Hills states: "Though the back area was better, the trenches on the whole were not as comfortable as those we had left, and during our first tour we had reason to regret the change... 2nd Lieut CW Selwyn, taking out a patrol in front of "F5" [a trench system] was shot through both thighs, and, though wonderfully cheerful when carried in, died a few days later at Bailleul." He is buried at Bailleul Communal Cemetery, grave I.3. He is also remembered on the memorial inside the Chapel at Uppingham School, but none of the brothers are on Uppingham Town war memorial or are mentioned in George Phillips' Rutland and the Great War. Christopher and Arthur are also on the memorial at Grayshott in Hampshire.

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  • Bailleul Communal Cemetery and Extension 1
  • C W Selwyn 3
  • C W Selwyn 2
  • C W Selwyn 1
  • C W Selwyn 4

User contributions

This article states,"The boys were all educated at Rugby School where Christopher and Arthur's great grandfather on their mother's side had been the famous Dr Arnold," and I believe this was true of George, but the twins (and two other brothers) went to Uppingham...The following all attended Uppingham School and from these years: Geoffrey Selwyn (1900, term 2) older brother, born 1888 Arthur Penrose Selwyn (1904, term 2) born 1889 Christopher Wakefield Selwyn (1905, term 1, for some reason a little later than his twin) born 1889 John Selwyn (1906, term 3) younger brother, born 1893 Arthur Wakefield Selwyn (1930, term 1) son of Arthur P SelwynMy sister and I attended for sixth form in 1980 and 1982; my two sons did the same in 2007 and 2009
By Emma D on Monday 15th July '19 at 12:52pm

Rutland and The Battle of the Somme

More than 90 Rutland soldiers died in the Battle of the Somme which lasted from 1 July 1916 until the middle of November. Today they lie in cemeteries across the old battlefield in northern France or are remembered among the 72,000 names on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. By using our interactive map, you can find out what happened to them.

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