Lieutenant Charles Kendall Hanson, M.C., The Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire) Regiment
Charles Kendall Hanson was born in late 1893 in Bradford the only son of William Brotherton Hanson and his wife Emma, (nee Kendall). The couple also had two daughters, Louisa, born 1888 and Gladys born 1889.
Charles’ elder sister, Louisa Hanson, served in WW1 as a Nurse and her biography and more details of the family’s life before the outbreak of war in August 1914 can be seen by clicking on the link.
It has not been possible to locate Charles in 1901, but it is known that his mother and sister Gladys were living at The Gables, Ossett. This was the home of his mother’s widowed brother, William Arthur Kendall, an architect and surveyor. His other sister, Louisa was living in Leeds with her aunt, Amelia Kendall. There was no sign of his father, who appears to have abandoned the family sometime between 1893 and 1901.
By 1911 Charles Kendall Hanson, now an architectural student, aged 17, had joined his mother, who still described herself as "married", and his sister, Gladys, at his Uncle William’s home at The Gables in Ossett.
The London Gazette Supplement on the 18th December 1916 announced, under the heading "Notts & Derby R. Cadet Charles Kendall Hanson [was] to be temp. 2nd Lt (on prob.) (attd.) 22 Nov 1916." Charles was then 22 years of age. Three months later, on the 16th February 1917, 2nd Lieutenant C.K. Hanson embarked for France with the Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Regiment). On the 27th October 1917, the Supplement to The London Gazette reported that Charles had been confirmed as a 2nd Lieutenant attached to the Notts & Derby Regiment.
Charles made a third appearance in the Supplement to the London Gazette on 18th March 1918 to report that "he had been awarded the Military Cross For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty in training his men and leading them in a raid." He succeeded in blowing up dug-outs full of the enemy, and kept them from escaping from the rear.
It has not been possible to determine which of the battalions of the Sherwood Foresters that Charles served with during WW1 and so the specific action in which he earned his Military Cross for gallantry is unknown. However, it is known however that he survived the war and he was awarded the British and Victory Medals for his service overseas in a theatre of war.
Charles Kendall Hanson made his fourth and final appearance, at least in his birth name, in the London Gazette on 31st May 1921 when the following Notice was published.
Thereafter Charles was known as Charles Kendall. His uncle, William Arthur Kendall, a widower, without children, died in late 1937, aged 80 years. William would have been immensely proud of his three “wards”, Louisa, Gladys and Charles, the daughters of his sister, Emma, who, like the children, appears to have been abandoned by her husband sometime between 1893 and March 1901.
Louisa and Charles had served during the war in different capacities of course, but both had been awarded honours for their courage in the face of the enemy. Gladys, a school teacher would have done her duty for the country back at home.
After the war, Charles Hanson, qualified as a chartered architect M.C.A.R.I. together with a Bachelor of Arts Degree (B.A.) and. In September 1936, he purchased 22 yards of frontage on to Southdale Road, from the Greenwood family, and designed and built a house, Southdale Croft, between Lime Street and Southdale Road where he would live out his days.
Like his uncle, Charles, became well known in Ossett, but few knew of his exploits during the Great War. In 1937, the year of his Uncle’s death, he was commissioned to survey and report on necessary remedial work to the Doctor’s Surgery at Sowood House, The Green, Ossett.
The Gables, designed, built and owned by William Arthur Kendall stands today as a tribute to the man who built it, and also to the man who did so much for his family at the time of their greatest need. In exchange, two of the children that he cared for during those dark years, rewarded him and the country with actions against the enemy that warranted the award of gallantry citations.