MUNN Stephen Henry (Harry)

Category: Military
Rank: Private (1) 4352 (2) G/15849
Regiment or Ship: 11th Bn Royal Sussex Regiment
Service Number(s): (1) 4352 (2) G/15849
Occupation: Agricultural labourer (1901); Carpenter’s labourer (1911)
Date of Birth: 1882
Place of Birth: Ninfield (Hailsham registration district)
Date of Death: 31.07.1917
Place of Burial / Memorials:

New Irish Farm Cemetery, near Ypres/Ieper, Belgium and on the Bexhill Town War Memorial

Address: Lower Street, Ninfield

Photos and newspaper articles

Family Information

Father : Samuel Munn born 1854/5 in Ninfield Sussex. He was an Agricultural Labourer and worked at Moor Hall Farm in 1891.
Mother: Ann Body Munn (nee Miller) born 1853/4 Dallington, Sussex
Brother: Frank Thomas Munn born 1879 died 1944.
Sister: Nellie Mahala Munn born 1880
Sister: Annie Louisa Munn born 1884
Wife: Annie Kemp, who he married in the summer of 1916. Annie later remarried. Her second husband was Sidney H.H.Evernden who she married in the summer of 1923 (Jun qtr). They had a daughter Iris Evernden born in the winter of 1925. She lived at 2 Crowmere Avenue, The Honies, Bexhill on sea.

First World War Experience

Munn served with Lowther’s Lambs 11th Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment. In May 1916 he was at a training camp in Purfleet Essex where he witnessed zeppelin attacks on nearby areas. By the September he was in France and had a new ID number. According to his letters in January 1917 he was serving alongside the Royal Engineers helping to build huts.

Sometime in early 1917 he was wounded as by March 1917 he was in Yorkshire at a VAD hospital. He had been moved there from another hospital 30 miles away. By 23rd May 1917 he was back in France. It appears that in July he joined the 12th Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment and was attached to the 225 Field Coy R.E British Expeditionery Force. Munn died in battle on the 31st July 1917 aged 34.

Several letters written by Harry are preserved in the Museum’s collection. They range from May 1916 to July 1917. The majority of his letters are thanking his sister Nancy for the presents she sent him which included fruit, cakes and butter! However they also give some interesting clues to his life at the Front. In September 1916 he wrote “we have got pretty close to the firing line so we are having a very exciting time. Fritz gives us a few shells in our billets of a night just to keep us awake   he aint a proud sort of chap”. He also describes the conditions; “we are having it pretty wet, we are up to our neck in mud”. However, most of all he talks about other Bexhill men at the Front , sharing gossip or asking for news. He also comments on the death of local nurse Barbara Esmee St.John “I am sorry to hear about the Rectors daughter, where was she? In Egypt I suppose”. In one of his last letters he promises to tell Nancy about his war experience stating, “you know I can’t tell you much about it but I shall have a lot to tell you some day”.

There is also a letter dated the 13th August 1917 from his sister Nancy, urging Harry to write home soon to relieve the anxiety of his wife Annie as she had not heard from him in over two weeks. Sadly the letter was returned to Nancy undelivered. Harry had been killed in action two weeks earlier on the 31st July 1917. He is buried at the New Irish Farm Cemetery, near Ypres, Belgium.

Stephen Received the Victory Medal


Additional Information

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