The AIF Project

Robert Henry NEAVERSON

Date of birth8 March 1878
Place of birthBurton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England
Other NamesNEAVESON
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationStation manager
AddressBrisbane, Queensland
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation37
Height6' 0"
Weight150 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Elizabeth Neaverson, 82 Waterloo Street, Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England
Previous military serviceServed in the Grenadier Guards for 4.6 years; in the South African Mounted Constabulary for 7.6 years.
Enlistment date24 March 1916
Rank on enlistment2nd Lieutenant
Unit name14th Light Horse Regiment, A Squadron
AWM Embarkation Roll number10/19/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A72 Beltana on 13 May 1916
Rank from Nominal RollLieutenant
Unit from Nominal Roll2nd Anzac Mounted Division Regiment
FateKilled in Action 26 April 1918
Age at death from cemetery records38
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 31), Belgium

The Menin Gate Memorial (so named because the road led to the town of Menin) was constructed on the site of a gateway in the eastern walls of the old Flemish town of Ypres, Belgium, where hundreds of thousands of allied troops passed on their way to the front, the Ypres salient, the site from April 1915 to the end of the war of some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

The Memorial was conceived as a monument to the 350,000 men of the British Empire who fought in the campaign. Inside the arch, on tablets of Portland stone, are inscribed the names of 56,000 men, including 6,178 Australians, who served in the Ypres campaign and who have no known grave.

The opening of the Menin Gate Memorial on 24 July 1927 so moved the Australian artist Will Longstaff that he painted 'The Menin Gate at Midnight', which portrays a ghostly army of the dead marching past the Menin Gate. The painting now hangs in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, at the entrance of which are two medieval stone lions presented to the Memorial by the City of Ypres in 1936.

Since the 1930s, with the brief interval of the German occupation in the Second World War, the City of Ypres has conducted a ceremony at the Memorial at dusk each evening to commemorate those who died in the Ypres campaign.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
9
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Robert and Elizabeth NEAVERSON, 82 Waterloo Street, Burton-on-Trent, England
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked, 13 May 1916; disembarked England, 10 July 1916. With Light Horse Training Squadron, Kandahar Barracks, 24 July 1916.

Appointed Lt, 1 April 1917.

Qualified 1st Class at the English Rifle Course, School of Musketry, Tidworth, 26 February-22 March 1917, and 'has a fair working knowledge of [the] Lewis Gun'.

Proceeded overseas to France, 16 August 1917. Taken on strength, 2nd Anzac Light Horse, 21 August 1917. Detached to Anti-Aircraft Section, 2nd Anzac Light Horse, 2 October 1917; rejoined unit from detachment, 8 October 1917. Detached to School of Instruction, 19 November 1917; rejoined unit from School, 4 December 1917. Detached to Anti-Aircraft Section, 6 December 1917; rejoined unit, 12 December 1917. Detached to Anti-Aircraft Section, 27 December 1917; rejoined unit, 3 January 1918. Detached to Salvage Party, 22nd Corps, 2 February 1918; rejoined unit, 26 April 1918.

Killed in action, 26 April 1918.

Adjutant, Australian Corps Mounted Troops, stated, 29 January 1919: 'Lieut. Neaverson, whilst in charge of a Mounted Patrol, working on the road running N.E. and S.W. and about 2 miles to the South-West of DICKEBUSCH, was shot by enemy machine gunners through the back and groin, and died whilst members of the patrol were dressing the wounds. Patrol was forced to withdraw and the body was left at the "Brasserie" ... in enemy hands. He was not buried by members of his regiment, but enquiries made later showed that he was buried by English infantrymen at the Brasserie, approximately 2500 yards West of St. ELOI.'

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal

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