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These pages will change from time to time to give different glimpses of the history of Shanklin from the Society’s Archive.
Please contact Helen Thomas if you have any ideas or pictures for future gallery pages.
The Story of
Frederick William Scott
To mark the centenary of World War I our Gallery Page is dedicated to all who fought by telling the story of one young boy from Shanklin in the early years of the War
Alexandria to Southampton November 1915
What happened to Fred at Gallipoli is not known except that he survived and was part of the evacuation to Alexandria in Egypt later in 1915. Possibly he was wounded or, more likely, became ill. He is pictured in a tented ‘Isolation Ward’ and on 6th November 1915 left Alexandria for home on the hospital ship ‘Goorkha’, arriving in Southampton on 19th November 1915.
27th April 1914
When Fred Scott celebrated his 16th birthday at his home at Ivy Bank, Hope Road, Shanklin, with his parents and older sister Helen, he could have had no idea what would happen in the next few years.
Background to the Story
Frederick William Scott, known to everyone as Fred, was born in Worcester on 27th April 1898 and is pictured above with his mother and sister. By 1911 Fred’s family, parents William Messer and Ada Maria together with his older sister Helen had moved to Shanklin where the children went to school. William Messer Scott came to Shanklin to work as a masseur and bath attendant at the famous Royal Shanklin Spa Hotel
At first the family lived at 2 Valancia Villas, Atherley Road but soon moved to Ivy Bank in Hope Road that remained the family home for many years. It has now been replaced by modern flats with the same name.
The story told here has been pieced together from a photograph album kept by Fred’s mother and research by his great nephew, Mark Saunders of Shanklin & District History Society.
More information on the Isle of Wight Rifles and the part they played at Gallipoli can be found on the website www.woottonbridgeiow.org.uk
Many World War I records, including Fred’s, were lost or badly damaged in September 1940 when a German bombing raid struck the War Office repository in Arnside Street, London. Where he went after Tidworth has not been traced, but by 1918 he was a Sergeant Instructor with the Machine Gun Corps in Mansfield, and on 25th May was in Grantham getting married to Doris Ainger. They were both 21. A youthful Doris and Fred in later life are pictured below.
After World War I Fred joined the RAF and his sister Helen’s children considered him a great sport who always had an amusing story to tell. Fred and Doris had two daughters and by 1950 were living back in Grantham when Fred died of peritonitis after an appendix operation at the age of 52.
His death came as a great shock to his family, but the story of the boy from Shanklin could have been very different and ended much earlier.
19th November 1914
Just a few months later Fred had joined the Isle of Wight Rifles and sent a postcard to his mother from Sandown saying “Dear Mother, Just a line to say I am all right, Fred”.
16th July 1915
Fred’s training continued in Watford, including learning to use signal flags. The photograph he sent home from Watford, on the right, taken on 16th July 1915 may have been a farewell picture.
Training at Shanklin
Fred’s early training with the IW Rifles seems to have included swimming off Shanklin Beach and parading on the Esplanade.
1916 in Wiltshire
Whether Fred was allowed leave in 1915 to visit his family in Shanklin is not known, but his War was not over.
By 1916 Fred was enrolled at the Non-Commissioned Officers’ School of Instruction at the Fellalabad Barracks in Tidworth, Wiltshire. By this time he was a Lance Corporal and had studio portraits taken for his parents signed “Your Loving Son, Fred”.
28th July 1914
War is Declared
30th July 1915
The IW Rifles, as part of the 163rd Infantry Brigade, 54th East Anglian Division, set sail from Liverpool on the ‘Aquitania’. They were headed for Turkey and Gallipoli.