Private Thomas Charles Watling, Essex Regt, 11544/5998506

An IRA reminiscence gives a Private Watson deserting with Private Percy Taylor. One assumes that he and Taylor deserted together, in which case Watson would have deserted 30 Oct 1920.

There is no Watson deserting that day, but there is Thomas Charles Watling. Born at Moulsham, Chelmsford and deserted from unknown Essex unit on 30 October 1920. NOK given as Father, Alfred Watling, 13 Nursery Rd, Chelmsford.

Given that Taylor deserted on 30th Oct 1920 and that Watling deserted on the same day, then the balance of probability is that the other deserter that the IRA man remembers is Watling

His service number points to him enlisting in 1920 about the same time as Albert James Taylor (the brother who did not desert), and points to him being of the same age as the Taylors, ie born 1900/1903

I cannot be sure that that is his real name. There is only one Watling who could possibly be him Thomas Henry Watling born Chelmsford 1901 and in 1901 census living at 9 Marlboro Road Moulsham Street Chelmsford. However he is Thomas Henry and not Thomas Charles and his father is Thomas Henry and not Alfred

But it is in the right part of Chelmsford

I cannot find any descendents of this family on the web

Essex Deserters