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Charles William Hines (1873-1915)

Solicitor from Boldon served as major with 1st/7th DLI killed at Ypres

Charles William Hines was the eldest of nine children that were born to Thomas and Elizabeth Hines. He attended Ushaw College and then Ampleforth College in Yorkshire from the age of twelve to eighteen. According to his obituary in the Ampleforth Journal he was ” of very decided character and pronounced views”. He was a keen sportsman, playing both football and cricket at school and then becoming one of the founder members of the Boldon Cricket Club. He also seems to have maintained a close relationship with Ampleforth School, visiting regularly and writing to the Father Abbot from the front (see obituary in related material).

Soon after leaving Ambleford, Charles’ father, Thomas, died in 1893. Charles took over the family law practice and seems to have become head of the household. Although, as a survivor of the Paris siege of 1870 (when “iron entered her soul” according to one account – see “Second Brother Killed in Action” below) it seems that his mother, Elizabeth, may have been quite a formidable matriarch of the Hines’ family.

Charles recorded that he was a solicitor and a territorial officer on the 1911 census. He seems to have joined the 3rd Volunteer Battalion of the Durham Light Infantry in 1897 as a Second Lieutenant. He was promoted to lieutenant later the same year and to captain in 1901. After the Haldane reorganisation of 1908, the 3rd Battalion became the 7th Battalion Durham Light Infantry.

Charles’ medal card shows that he disembarked in France on 19 April 1915. The 7th DLI were plunged almost immediately into the Second Battle of Ypres (see link to blog, below). Less than a month later, on 26 May 1915, Charles was killed at or near Wittebroke Farm, Ypres. According the Ampleford obituary, Charles’s colonel wrote at his death:

“He always loved soldiering, and died one of the bravest men who have lost their lives here. He would not retire. He could have left his post, but his duty was to stay, and the last anyone saw of him he was firing away at the enemy.”

Civil Parish: Boldon

Birth date: 1873

Death date: 24-May-1915

Armed force/civilian: Army

Residence: “Warriston”, Station Road, East Boldon (1911 census)
47 West Sunniside, Sunderland (Probate, 1915)

Education: Ushaw College (Evening Chronicle article, 8 June 1907)
Ampleforth College (1891 census)

Organisation membership: Boldon Cricket Club, founder member and honorary secretary (Evening Chronicle article, 8 June 1907)

Employment: Solicitor (1901, 1911 census)
Hines and Son, Solicitors, Sunderland (McGregor index card, DCRO)

Family: Parents: Thomas Hines, Elizabeth Hines nee Hawkey
Siblings: Francis (Frank) Hines, Constance Mary Hines, Oswald Hines, Austin Hines, Gerald Hines (1911 census), Arthur Hines, Mildred Hines, Valerie Hines (1901 census)

Military service:

3rd Volunteer Battalion Durham Light Infantry
Second Lieutenant: 24 March 1897
Lieutenant: 22 December 1897
Captain: 27 January 1901
7th Battalion Durham Light Infantry: 1 April 1908
Major: 1 February 1915
Disembarked France: 19 April 1915

Medal(s): 1915 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal

Memorial(s): Ypres Menin Gate Memorial, Belgium
Front Street, East Boldon, cross
Saint Nicholas Church, West Boldon, plaque
Sunderland Incorporated Law Society, Sunderland Club, Toward Road, Sunderland, plaque (now in private hands)
Sunderland Club, Toward Road, Sunderland, plaque
TA Centre, Seaburn, 7th DLI Fallen Roll of Honour (originally at Headquarters of 7th DLI Old Comrades Association, Borough Road, Sunderland
Holy Trinity, Church Street East, Sunderland, book of remembrance (now at The Donnison School and Education Centre, Church Walk, Sunderland)
Saint Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, Bridge Street, Sunderland, calvary and plaque
Sunderland Rugby and Cricket Club, roll of honour

Gender: Male

Contributed by Durham County Record Office