The AIF Project

Charles Radford BURNE

Regimental number4742
Place of birthBally Reane, Co. Wicklow, Ireland
Place of birthCo Wicklow, Ireland
SchoolRathdrum National School, Co. Wicklow, Ireland
Age on arrival in Australia17
ReligionMethodist
OccupationAxeman
AddressLucklands, Queensland
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 7"
Weight140 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs M L Burne, Lucklands, Oakey, Queensland
Enlistment date28 September 1915
Place of enlistmentBrisbane, Queensland
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name15th Battalion, 15th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/32/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Brisbane, Queensland, on board HMAT A73 Commonwealth on 28 March 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll15th Battalion
Other details from Roll of Honour Circular'He was on a machine gun (Lewis) & when last seen by his Sergeant he was mowing down Germans by the dozen.' (details from mother)
FateKilled in Action 11 April 1917
Place of death or woundingBullecourt, France
Age at death22
Age at death from cemetery records22
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
75
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Thomas and Margaret BURNE. Born in Co. Wicklow, Ireland
Family/military connectionsBrother: 3700 Lance Corporal Arthur Edward Thomas BURNE MM, 49th Bn, killed in action, 12 October 1916.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked, Brisbane, 28 March 1916; disembarked, Egypt, 5 May 1916.

Admitted to 2nd Australian Stationary Hospital (mumps), Tel-el-Kebir, 28 May 1916; to 4th Auxiliary Hospital, Heliopolis, 28 May 1916; discharged to duty, 7 June 1916.

Embarked, Alexandria, to join the British Expeditionary Force, 6 August 1916.

Admitted to Bulford Dermatological Hospital (venereal disease), England, 3 September 1916; discharged to duty, Parkhouse, 22 November 1916; total period of treatment for venereal disease, 80 days; marched into 4th Training Bn, Codford, 22 November 1916; proceeded overseas to France via Folkestone, 4 December 1916; marched into 4th Australian Divisional Base Depot, Etaples, France, 5 December 1916; proceeded to join the 15th Bn, 20 December 1916; taken on strength of 15th Bn from Reinforcements, in the field, 22 December 1916.

Missing in action, France, 11 April 1917; previously reported missing, 11 April 1917, now reported killed in action, France, 11 April 1917, vide 15th Bn Court of Enquiry held at Crepy, 11 April 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, BURNE Charles Radford

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