Village memories: Field at Northern Woods (picture from SWOP website)
PRIVATE SE/5414 17TH VET HOSPITAL, ARMY VETERINARY CORPS
DIED ON 04 NOVEMBER 1915 AGED 35YRS
REMEMBERED WITH HONOUR ALEXANDRIA CHATBY) MILITARY AND
WAR MEMORIAL CEMETERY, EGYPT
GRAVE REF: B136
Joseph Langston was born in 1880 in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. His parents were
Joseph & Anne. In 1891 the family are living at West Wycombe, Buckinghamshire and
Joseph is one of 8 children listed. His siblings are Ada, Fred, Nellie, Lillie, Alice, Flora &
George (other siblings were Rupert, Ivy May and Bert).
In 1900 Joseph married Elizabeth Phyllis Howard and in 1901 they were living with his sister’s
family at London Road, Upper Marsh Boundary Terrace, High Wycombe. Joseph is now 21yrs
old and his wife only 18yrs. She was born at Flackwell Heath.
By 1911 Joseph and Elizabeth were living at Northern Woods, Flackwell Heath. They have 4
children, Alice aged 8yrs, Frank Howard aged 6yrs, Violet Ruby aged 2yrs and Albert George
aged 6mths. Joseph is employed as a “board mill hand”.
Joseph enlisted at High Wycombe. He was with the Army Veterinary Corps in 1915 in the
Middle East where he died from enteric fever on 4th November 1915.
The Army Veterinary Corps were invaluable to the Army as they relied on their horses and
mules. 80% of all injured animals were treated during WW1 and returned to duty. This
earned the Corps the Royal prefix in 1918. The care of the horses and mules was so well
organised by this time that we were the envy of all the other nations on the Western Front.
Joseph is also remembered on the High Wycombe Hospital Memorial plaque and on the
Wycombe Marsh memorial. His name also appears on the High Wycombe Roll of Honour.
His wife Elizabeth had predeceased him and after Joseph died unfortunately his children
were put into orphanages.