Thomas Horrocks Cork

Thomas Horrocks Cork was born between April and June 1896 in Hinstock, Shropshire to Alfred and Harriet Cork. Alfred was born in Hinstock and Harriet in Ercall, both in Shropshire. Thomas had one brother, Percy, who was also one of our Scouts. They had a half sister – Harriet’s daughter.

Thomas and Percy’s cousin (on their father’s side), Clarence Frederick Cork was also one of our Scouts and was also, sadly, killed in the Great War.

In 1901, according to the Census, they were living at 19 Watlands View and Alfred was a cart man(?). In 1908, both Thomas and his brother are on our list of our original Scouts and the family had moved to 30 Watlands View. Still at the same address in 1911, Alfred was a dray man for a brewery and Thomas was a grocer’s errand boy.

At some point before he joined up, Thomas’s parents moved to Market Drayton. Thomas enlisted in the army at the beginning of the War at Hounslow, London.

The Weekly Sentinel Saturday 2nd June 1917

Private Tom Cork, Porthill

Pte. Cork, of 30, Watlands View, Porthill, Stoke-on-Trent, joined the Royal Fusiliers at the beginning of the war, and is now in a Lewis-gun section. He has been at the front eighteen months. He previously worked for Mr. Wood, Porthill, and Mr. Sanders, Burslem. 1

Bradwell Lane 1910 (Medium)

Wood’s Grocers on the corner of Watlands View and Bradwell Lane in a postcard which was sent in 1910. Is that Thomas in the doorway?

Presumably he had been injured sometime in or around May 1917 due to his details and photo being in the Weekly Sentinel. Also, sometime after this event, he was promoted to Corporal.

He served as Corporal Thomas Cork, 19027 13th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) and was killed in France, aged 22, on 18th September 1918.

Picture 076June 2nd 1917 page 6

Thomas Cork from the Weekly Sentinel Saturday 2nd June 1917 2

Thomas Cork was awarded the British War Medal and the Allied Victory Medal. He has no known grave and is commemorated at the Vis-En-Artois Memorial France. He is also commemorated in the main part of the Book of Remembrance and the Porthill War Memorial (but oddly not as a Scout).

Cork T H

Thomas Cork commemorated on the Vis-En-Artois Memorial 3

  1. Sentinel clipping courtesy of Geoff Mayer
  2. Sentinel photo courtesy of Geoff Mayer
  3. Memorial photo courtesy of British War Graves