Rank:


Private

Service No(s):


10992

Regiment:


Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry

Unit:

7th Battalion

Returned:

No

Place of birth:

Islington - Middlesex

Occupation:

Porter Super (Railway)

Date of death:

24/08/1916

Cause of death:

Killed in action

Grave or panel reference:

7. B. 8

Name of father:

George

Name of siblings:

Arthur (half brother, formerly Arthur Turner), George, Emily, Grace

Name(s) of children:

Died:

Yes

Date of birth:

22/08/1893

Place of enlistment:

Islington - Middlesex

Event:

France and Belgium

Age at death:

23

Cemetery or memorial:

London Cemetery And Extension, Longueval, France

Other memorial:

Name of mother:

Hannah (nee Turner)

Name of spouse:

Address:

5 Clifton Terrace, Finsbury Park (1911 Census)

Biography:

Joseph Darton was born on 22 August 1893 in Islington, the third of five children of George and
Hannah Darton (née Turner). Before George and Hannah were married, she had given birth to a son, Arthur, possibly out of wedlock. George Darton had worked as a police constable as a young man but is listed as a labourer in the1891 Census, which is the first time that the Dartons, including Arthur, are recorded as living at 5 Clifton Terrace in Finsbury Park, the road on which the Park Theatre now stands.

Joseph was baptised at St Anne’s Church in Pooles Park on 20 September 1896, on the same day as his younger sister, Emily. As well as his half-brother, he had two older siblings, George and Ethel, and two younger, Emily and Grace. Only Joseph, Emily and Grace were still at home by the time of the 1911 Census, which lists Joseph, by then 17, as working as a porter on the railways.

It is not recorded when Joe (as he is referred to in his Army records) enlisted, but he served in the 7th Battalion, Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry, and was killed in action on 24 August 1916. That date suggests he died in the Battle of Delville Wood (15 July-3 September 1916), a series of engagements during the Battle of the Somme. The Somme roll of honour records that on 24 August the battalion were engaged in countering German attacks on the village of Guillemont.

Joe was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. His brother George, who worked as a turntable carpenter and lived in nearby Moray Road, served with the Royal Engineers and is one of the returning soldiers who is also commemorated at St Mellitus.