Harry Leslie BATEMAN

BATEMAN, Harry Leslie

Service Number: 4529
Enlisted: Not yet discovered
Last Rank: Sapper
Last Unit: 3rd Tunnelling Company (inc. 6th Tunnelling Company)
Born: Not yet discovered
Home Town: Not yet discovered
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Not yet discovered
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World War 1 Service

1 Jun 1916: Involvement Sapper, SN 4529, 1st Tunnelling Company (inc. 4th Tunnelling Company)
1 Jun 1916: Involvement Sapper, SN 4529, 3rd Tunnelling Company (inc. 6th Tunnelling Company)
1 Jun 1916: Embarked Sapper, SN 4529, 1st Tunnelling Company (inc. 4th Tunnelling Company), HMAT Warilda, Fremantle
1 Jun 1916: Embarked Sapper, SN 4529, 3rd Tunnelling Company (inc. 6th Tunnelling Company), HMAT Warilda, Fremantle


4529 – 3rd Tunnelling Company

Born London, England, about 1880, Harry was the son of Frank and Agnes Bateman.

He signed the ‘Attestation Paper of Persons Enlisted for Service Abroad’ and the Oath to ‘well and truly serve’ on 10 April 1916 at Perth, Western Australia (WA). A medical examination on the same day found Harry to be ‘fit for active service’ and recorded that he was 5ft 11½ins tall, weighed 170lbs, had a fresh complexion, light blue eyes and dark brown hair.

He stated his age as 29 years and 3 months and his trade as Motor Driver. Later records show Harry as a Chauffeur of King Street Garage, King Street, Perth. He named as his Next-of-Kin his father, Mr Frank Bateman of Sackville Street, Piccadilly, London, England.

From 1 May 1916, Harry was at 66 Depot. It is not recorded just when he joined No.6 Tunnelling Company.

Harry embarked at Fremantle on board HMAT A69 Warilda on 1 June 1916 with No.6 Tunnelling Company 1st Reinforcements.

Two Sections of the Northern recruits to form the No.4 Company had embarked from Brisbane, Queensland early in May, 1916 aboard HMAT A69 Warilda for Sydney, New South Wales (NSW). Six officers and 152 other ranks together with the 1st Reinforcements of fifteen other ranks made up the two sections.

At Rosebery Park, Sydney, NSW they joined their Headquarters and two sections (8 officers & 153 O.Rs.) plus 1st Reinforcements consisting of one officer and seventeen other ranks for final training.

The 7713 ton transport departed Sydney, NSW on May 22, 1916 and collected in Melbourne, Victoria the No 5 Company recruited from Victoria, South Australia & Tasmania consisting of a Headquarters and 2 Sections (8 officers & 173 men) (3 M.D.). 1 Section from Tasmania (3 officers & 76 O.Rs); also 1st Reinforcements for No 5 Company (17 men from Vic. & 8 men Tas.) The ship departed on May 25, 1916 for Adelaide, S.A. to collect one Section of 3 officers & 76 O.Rs with 1st Reinforcements of 8 O.Rs.

Docking at Fremantle, W.A. on June 1, 1916 No 6 Company recruited from W.A. of 14 officers and 325 O.Rs along with 1st Reinforcements of 1 Officer & 32 O.Rs embarked and Warilda departed the same day for the European theatre.

Durban, South Africa was reached on June 16, 1916 and Cape Town on June 21, 1916 while St Vincent completed the African ports of call on July 7, 1916. Discipline was fairly good except at intermediate ports where soldiers going Absent Without Leave caused concern. The fifty-eight day voyage experienced remarkable pleasant weather and terminated at Plymouth, England on July 18, 1916. Four, Five and Six Companies comprising of 1064 officers and other ranks were detrained to Amesbury and Tidworth to begin training for the front.

He proceeded overseas to France on 28 August 1916 and was taken on strength of the 3rd Australian Tunnelling Company on 30 September.

Harry reported sick on 5 October 1916 and was admitted to 1/2nd London Casualty Clearing Station from where he was transferred to the 7th General Hospital on 10 October. He was evacuated from Boulogne to England on board Hospital Ship St Denis and admitted to Leicester Royal Infirmary, London, with pleurisy on 14 October 1916.

On 21 November Harry was transferred from the 5th Northern General Hospital to the 1st Auxiliary Hospital and on 24 November from 1st Auxiliary Hospital to Weymouth.

Harry marched into No.4 Command Depot Hurdcott from No.2 Command Depot, Wareham on 3 December 1916 and marched out of No.4 Com. Depot to the Overseas Training Brigade, Longbridge Deverill on 21 November 1917.

He again proceeded overseas to France on 8 May 1918 and marched into the Australian General Base Depot (AGBD) at Rouelles on 9 May, rejoining his unit on 14 May.

Reporting sick on 28 June 1918, Harry was admitted to the 34th Field Ambulance with P.U.O. (pyrexia of unknown origin), rejoining his unit on 2 July.

Harry no doubt enjoyed some leave from 30 November to 14 December 1918 and was granted leave without pay and allowances in England from 15 December 1918 to 15 January 1919. On 16 January he was taken on strength of A.M.T.S. Chelsea, and mustered as Driver Motor Transport.

He was detached to duty at the High Commissioners Office, London on 3 February 1919.

Harry left London on 3 September 1919 on board Barambah, arriving at Fremantle on 17 October 1919. He was Discharged from the A.I.F. on 10 December 1919, entitled to wear the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Harry Bateman married 21-year-old Geraldine (recorded as Jerildine on WA BDM) C. Leaver at Moora, Western Australia in 1923. Geraldine was the daughter of 5363 Sapper Charles Henry Leaver, also of the 3rd Australian Tunnelling Company.

His documents were forwarded to the Repatriation Commission, Perth, on March 1957.

Harry Leslie Bateman died in Perth in 1957 at the age of 70 years.

© Donna Baldey 2010
Compiled with the assistance of Bill Leaver of WA, grandson of Charles Henry LEAVER and great nephew of 5282 Spr Gerald Audley Babbington BEARD - 1st Aust Tunnelling Coy.

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