Several soldiers from Somercotes and Pye Bridge served in the army and took part in the Second Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902. The Derbyshire Times & Chesterfield Herald published on 30 December 1899 printed a large article on the South African Campaign, and included a list of Derbyshire men serving in country at that time. In total, eighteen soldiers were listed from the “Alfreton Division”. Although only four are from Somercotes or Pye Bridge, the whole list is quoted below for completeness, and is in the order and style as printed in the newspaper.
Private J Bettison, Somercotes
Private Walter Bettison, Somercotes
Private Darling, Pye Bridge, Coldstream Guards
Private Shear, Pinxton, Coldstream Guards
Private Ewin, Tibshelf, 1st Battalion, Derbyshire Regiment
Private Bradshaw, Newton, West Riding Regiment
Private Slack, Pye Bridge, 4th Sherwood Foresters
Private Guest, Old Danesmoor, King’s Royal Rifles
Private Moakes, Tibshelf, Derbyshire Regiment
Private Renshaw, Pinxton, Durham Light Infantry
Private Sewell, Riddings, Devonshire Regiment
Private John Sewell, Selston & Riddings, Derbyshire Regiment
Private Hall, Pinxton, Derbyshire Regiment
Private Brewster, Alfreton, 60th King’s Royal Rifles
Private Young, Oakerthorpe, KOYL Infantry
Private Iliffe, Shirland, York and Lancashire Regiment
Private Webb, Morton
Private Orton, Swanwick
The Derbyshire Times confirmed that they were indebted to the local secretaries of the relief funds for the names of the soldiers from Derbyshire serving in South Africa.
One name missing from the list (as it was no doubt compiled prior to his arriving in South Africa) is Thomas Musgrove, who we confirm below:
Driver Thomas Musgrove, Somercotes, 7th Battery, Royal Field Artillery
Thomas Musgrove was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal during the Battle of Colenso. Please refer to the separate article written on this soldier.