1897 – 1917

Frederick known as Frank was born in the White House on Blacksmiths Hill Capel St Mary in 1897 he was one of ten children born to George Ratford and Eliza Ratford nee Cole. George and Eliza were married in the Samford registration district in 1889. George Ratford was a Blacksmith by trade, he was born in Capel St Mary in 1866 and died in 1948 he was buried in Capel St Mary on15 April 1948. Eliza Cole was also born in Capel in 1866 and before marriage worked as agricultural labourer, she died in 1934 and was buried Capel St Mary on 4 April 1934. Frederick’s siblings were, Lillian Emma b1887 d1964, George James b1891 d unknown, Mary Dora b1893 d1980, Edith May b1895 d unknown, Frederick himself,  b1897d1917 Robert Stanley b1899 d1978, John b1900 d1984, Doris Ivy b1905 d1984, William Sage b1908 d2002, plus one other unknown (suspect) died as infant.

Frederick like his brothers and sisters was educated in Capel school, upon leaving school he worked as a waiter in the Great White Horse Hotel, Tavern St. Ipswich. There is a story within the family that the family are related to Mr Sage the man cutting reeds in John Constable’s painting the Haywain through Frederick’s Grandmother, Emma Sage b1837 d1926

He enlisted sometime during 1915 becoming Private 23825 Ratford Suffolk Regiment, he was later transferred to the Essex Regiment as Private 6895 Ratford. While training during a rout march he suffered a ruptured appendix, collapsed and was rushed to Ripon Military hospital for emergency surgery following the operation septicemia took hold and he died on 12th February 1917. He was buried with Military Honours in Ripon Cemetary. There is no record of service overseas, but if he did serve overseas he would have been entitled to medals shown below.

Frederick is remembered with Honour  Ripon Cemetery Yorkshire and on the Brass Plaque in St Mary’s Church Capel St Mary.

He may have been posthumously awarded: 

  1. The British War Medal 1914-1918 

  2. The  Victory Medal 1914-1919 

His Next of Kin would have received The Memorial Plaque and Scroll.

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