The AIF Project

Reginald Arthur CLARKE

Regimental number6112
Place of birthRushden, Northamptonshire, England
SchoolColfes Grammar School, Lewisham, London, and Technical High School, Portsmouth, England
Age on arrival in Australia19.5
Address'Wrexham', Bondi Road, Bondi, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 8"
Weight130 lbs
Next of kinFather, C W Clarke, 'Wrexham', Bondi Road, Bondi, New South Wales
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date4 January 1916
Place of enlistmentSydney, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name1st Battalion, 19th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/18/4
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A18 Wiltshire on 22 August 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll1st Battalion
FateKilled in Action 18 September 1917
Place of death or woundingClapham Common, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death22.9
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 7), 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
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Charles William and Sarah Ingram CLARKE
Family/military connectionsBrother: 6113 Corporal William Archibald John CLARKE, 1st Bn, returned to Australia, 21 March 1919.
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Sydney, 22 August 1915; disembarked Plymouth, England, 13 October 1916, and marched in to 1st Training Bn.

Proceeded overseas to France, 13 December 1916; taken on strength, 1st Bn, in the field, 18 December 1916.

Killed in action, Belgium, 18 September 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, CLARKE Reginald Arthur

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