Frank Hector Church was born in Ilford on 17th April 1890. He was one of ten children born to Charles and Ada Church. The family lived in Aldborough Road, Ilford. His father was a merchant.
Frank joined the school in September 1904, along with his younger brother, Charles. He was 14 years old and had previously attended Downshall Elementary School, Ilford. On 22nd December 1905, Frank left the school to take up a post in business.
By 1911, the 20-year-old Frank had enlisted as a private in the 2nd Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment (service number 9426), whilst his family were living at 135 Alexander Villas, Hainault Road, Leytonstone. At the outbreak of war, Frank had already risen in rank to Corporal. He was sent to the Western Front with his regiment. He died on 26th October 1914, aged 24. His name appears on the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, in Belgium. He is also remembered on the Wanstead War Memorial.
The name F N Church appears on the Ilford County High School Memorial Plaque however the school registers, which are kept at Ilford County High School, record an individual by the name of Frank Hector Church (which matches up with genealogical research). It is therefore likely that an error was made when the memorial was produced, with the H being mistaken for an N.
The name F N Church also appears on the on the Ilford War Memorial and in the War Memorial Gazette, however without further evidence it is not possible to definitely link these two memorials to Frank Hector Church.
Research by Andrew Emeny, History Teacher at ICHS
ICHS school records and magazines
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Ilford County High School started life as the Park Higher Grade School in 1901 in Balfour Road, Ilford. It was renamed Ilford County High School (or initially County High School, Ilford) in the years after the school’s management was transferred from Ilford School Board to Essex Education Committee in 1904.