Fergus Sydney HOYLE


HOYLE, Fergus Sydney

Service Number: 5123
Enlisted: 14 October 1915
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 10th Infantry Battalion
Born: Minlaton, South Australia, 24 November 1897
Home Town: Salisbury, Salisbury, South Australia
Schooling: Muirden and St Peter's Colleges
Occupation: Clerk with National bank
Died: Killed In Action, France, 7 May 1917, aged 19 years
Cemetery: No known grave - "Known Unto God"
Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, Picardie, France
Memorials: Adelaide National Australia Bank WW1 Honour Board, Adelaide National War Memorial, Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Hackney St Peter's College Fallen Honour Board, Salisbury War Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux Memorial (Australian National Memorial - France)
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World War 1 Service

14 Oct 1915: Enlisted
25 Mar 1916: Involvement Private, SN 5123, 10th Infantry Battalion
25 Mar 1916: Embarked Private, SN 5123, 10th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Shropshire, Adelaide

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From the book Fallen Saints 


Fergus Sydney Hoyle was born at Minlaton, Yorke Peninsula, South Australia in 1897.

He was educated at Muirden College Adelaide as well as the Collegiate School of St. Peter and while there served four years as a senior cadet in 78th Infantry; after leaving school, he was employed as a clerk with the National bank.

He enlisted at Salisbury, South Australia on 14 October 1915 and was in transit at C Company 2nd Depot Battalion, Exhibition Camp until 1 January 1916 when he joined the 16th quota of reinforcements for the 10th Battalion.  

 This quota comprising 210 men under the command of Second Lieutenants Rufus Ford, Eric Harvey, and John Sinclair sailed from Adelaide aboard HMAT Shropshire on 25 March 1916.

After further training on the Salisbury Plain this quota sailed for France and joined the 10th battalion at Ottawa Camp on 11 September in time to participate in the operations at ‘Hill 60’, Gueudecourt and Flers.

In February 1917, the 10th Battalion were heavily involved at Le Barque after which they spent most of March in Shelter Wood Camp undergoing training or at rest.  They experienced a great deal of action during April at Louverval, and Lagnicourt and at the end of the month were engaged in railway construction under the supervision of the Canadian Engineers.

The 10th Battalion moved via Fremicourt into the trenches at Bullecourt on 5 May, where they conducted attacks, counter-attacks and endured heavy enemy shelling. The shelling was so heavy that between 10 p.m., and midnight on 6 May, D Company alone had eight men killed and 20 wounded and when the battalion was relieved by the 53rd Battalion in the dark 8/9 May it had suffered 181 casualties. [i]

Among those killed in action on 7 May 1917 was 5123 Private Fergus Hoyle; he was 19 years of age.

[i] 10th Battalion War Diary 4-9 May 1917 – AWM 4 23/27/19