Colin Mitchell 1

Colin Mitchell

Surname: Mitchell
Other names: Colin
Other people in this story:
John Thomas Mitchell
Emma Mitchell
Locations in this story:
Mere, Wiltshire
Shaftesbury Grammar School, Shaftesbury, Dorset
Fletchin, France
Pozieres Memorial, France
France & Flanders

Story:
Colin Mitchell was born in Mere, Wiltshire on 29th March 1890 and was baptised on 18th September 1890. He was the son of John Thomas Mitchell, a farmer, and Emma Mitchell. He attended Shaftesbury Grammar School from February 1901 and he appears on the 1901 Census as a boarder there. His father died in in 1902 and was buried at the Parish Church in Mere on 27th June. After leaving school in 1906 Colin entered the Wilts and Dorset Bank. By the time of the 1911 Census he had moved to a boarding house in New Street, Somerton, Somerset whilst working at the local branch of the bank.

On 18th August 1914, shortly after the outbreak of the First World War, Colin joined the 8th Rifle Brigade as a Rifleman (Service No. B/567) and on 18th August 1914 he was posted to France. On the 4th January 1916 he was invalided back to the UK for unspecified reasons and was re-posted to France on 26th September 1916. His medical record shows him being wounded from a grenade on 13th October 1916. He was also beset by dermatitis (possibly due to trench life).

In 1916 Colin published Trampled Clay, a book of war poetry. The volume was published by Erskine MacDonald and included Hooge, which describes one of the first uses of flamethrowers in battle. Colin died at Fletchin in France on 22nd March 1918 and his name appears on the Pozieres Memorial, France (Panel 81 to 84). He is remembered on the Mere War Memorial and on the Shaftesbury Grammar School Memorial in Shaftesbury School. He was awarded the 1915 Star, Victory and British War medals.

A "First List of Old Shastonians Serving in H.M. Forces" was produced by Shaftesbury Grammar School in September 1915. It shows the regiment in which Colin served and the date and term in which he left school. His name was also included on a hand written list of Shaftesbury Grammar School old boys serving during the war. An asterix can be seen next to Colin's name, indicating that he had died. The board is now at Gold Hill Museum.

Printed Sources:
Shaftesbury Grammar School Magazine, October 1914
Shaftesbury Grammar School Magazine, June 1918
First List of Old Shastonians Serving in H.M. Forces, September 1915
Trampled Clay, by Colin Mitchell, Erskine MacDonald, 1916
Mitchell Family History by Mervyn Mitchell

Images:
  • Colin Mitchell 2
  • Colin Mitchell 3
  • Trampled Clay
  • Shaftesbury Grammar School War Memorial
  • Shaftesbury Grammar School Old Boys 5
  • List of Old Shastonians 3
  • Mere War Memorial 3
  • Mere War Memorial 2
  • Mere War Memorial 1
  • Names on Mere War Memorial 1
  • Names on Mere War Memorial 3
  • Names on Mere War Memorial 2
  • Shaftesbury Grammar School Old Boys 1

Links to related web content / sources:
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
The National Archives
Shastonian