Thank you to Lenka Cathersides for the following research.
Leonard William Booker was born on 15th May 1893 in Holmwood and was baptised on 9th July 1893 at St Mary’s church in Holmwood. He was the son of agricultural labourer Andrew and Ada Sarah Booker nee Phipps.
On 18th May 1896, Leonard was admitted into the South Holmwood Church of England School. At the time of his admission he lived at Betchetts Green Farm. Leonard left the school in October 1921.
At the time of the 1901 Census, the family were still living at Betchetts Green Farm, where Andrew worked as a stockman. Ada was at home looking their children; gardener Andrew, Ethel and Leonard. Thomas Barwell, who worked as a groom, also boarded with the family.
On 25th April 1910, Leonard entered into service of the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway Company. He became a signal porter at Warnham Station. On 27th June 1911 he was transferred to Cheam Station.
At the time of the 1911 Census, Leonard was a boarder of railway platelayer William Wright at Railway Cottages, Warnham Station, where he worked as railway porter. The cottage had five rooms.
On 22nd July 1912 Leonard was admitted into the Britain Train Union – Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, Horsham Branch. At this time he was working as a signal porter.
Leonard Booker enlisted in Wandsworth into the 2nd Battalion the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry. He was a Private with regimental number 12215. At the time of his enlistment he lived in Wimbledon Park. Later he was transferred into the 7th Battalion the Royal Dublin Fusiliers.
At the time of his death he was part of the 2nd Battalion the Royal Dublin Fusiliers. He remained a Private and his new regimental number was 24155.
According to Leonard’s service records he was killed in action on 16th August 1917 in France.
However, on 16th August 1917 the 2nd Battalion the Royal Dublin Fusiliers was engaged in the action at Frezenberg Ridge outside Ypres in Belgium during a phase of the Battle of Passchendaele (Third Ypres), known as the Battle of Langemark. The battle lasted for two days.
Leonard Booker is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial to the Missing in France on Panels 144 to 145.
He received the British War and Victory medals.
Leonard’s mother Ada received £18, 19s and 3d on the 25th of October 1918 and a further £14 on the 7th of November 1919 in Soldier’s Effects. In 1917 Ada Booker lived at The Lodge, Edgecombe Hall, Beaumont Road, Wimbledon Park.
The Museum holds a full set of Leonard Bookers medals.
Booker Family History
Leonard’s father Andrew was born in the 4th quarter of 1854 in Holmwood to farm worker Andrew Snr, born about 1809 in Capel and Eliza, born about 1813 in Holmwood. His mother Ada was born in the 2nd quarter of 1857 in Aston Clinton, Buckinghamshire, to coachman and groom John Phipps, born about 1824 in Abingdon, Berkshire and Alice Phipps, born about 1835 in Sawston, Cambridgeshire.
Andrew and Ada married on 28th April 1877 at St Mary’s church in Holmwood. At the time of their marriage they lived in Holmwood and Andrew was working as an agricultural labourer.
Leonard Booker had six siblings: Minnie born about 1878; Andrew Charles born in the 1st quarter of 1880; Ada Lily born in the 2nd quarter of 1882; Jesse Alice born in the 1st quarter of 1887 and Ethel Louisa born in the 2nd quarter of 1892, all in Holmwood.
At the time of the 1881 Census, the family lived in Holmwood. Andrew was working as an agricultural labourer and Ada was looking after their children: Minnie and Andrew Charles.
At the time of the 1891 Census, the family lived at Vicarage Farm in Holmwood. Andrew was still working as an agricultural labourer and Sarah Ada was at home. The household further comprised of their children: Minnie, Andrew Charles, Ada Lily and Jesse Alice.
|Son of||Andrew and Ada Sarah (nee Phipps) Booker|
|Regiment||2nd Battalion. The Royal Dublin Fusiliers|
|Former Regiment||12215. 2nd Battalion. The Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry|
|Date of Death||16th August 1917|
|Place of Death||Passchendaele, Belgium|
|Cause of Death||Killed in action|
|Memorial||Tyne Cot Memorial, Zonnebeke, Belgium|