Thomas appears on the 1901 census aged 5. He was living at 27 Brook Road Shotton with the rest of his family which comprised his father William Campden aged 30 a sheet iron roller (pudd), who had been born in Smethwick Staffordshire. His mother was Harriet E Campden 28 and she had been born in Moxley in Staffordshire which is where the three children had been born also. They were William H 7, Thomas 5 and Dorothy N 4.
Ten years later in the 1911 census the family was living at 53 Brook Road. The family had grown somewhat. The father William Henry was now 40 and still an ironworker. His wife of 18 years was Harriet Eliza now 38. William H was 17 and Thomas 15 were both ironworkers. Dorothy Nellie was 14. A further four children had been born in Shotton. Florence Eileen was 8, Emily Gwen 6, Annie 3 and Laura Harriet was 1. There was also a lodger named Abraham Freeth a 24 year old ironworker who hailed from Moxley, who was to lose his life on the 18th April 1916 in the Balkans, please click on his name to see his page on this memorial.
There is a card for Thomas (Shotton F 6) in the Flintshire Roll of Honour at the County Archive Office in Hawarden, Flintshire. It contains his name address and regimental details. It tells us he served for 15 months and is signed by his mother Mrs H Campden on the 4th January 1921 when she also signed William’s Card.
Please note that William H Campden, brother to Thomas, was also killed in the war and is named on the Connah’s Quay Memorial. He has his own page on this website.
In the County Herald of the 10th August 1917 a list of Casualties was published and among them was :- Died – South Wales Borderers – Died of Wounds, Campden, 39539 T. (Shotton)
Uk soldiers who died in the Great war 1914-19 accessible on www,ancestry.co.uk gives regimental details as above. It tells us that he enlisted in Shotton and that he died in France/Flanders of his wounds.
Thomas Campden in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 tells us that the sole Legatee was his mother Harriet E. Who was paid £3.8s 11d on the 19th October 1917 and his War Gratuity of £4. 0s 0d on the 24th November 1919.
Like many soldiers in the cemeteries, Thomas Campden is in a shared grave. The other occupant is L.C. C.W Rose of the Scots Guards. At the foot of Thomas’s part of the grave beneath his name, regimental details and date of death , is the inscription ‘His memory is sweetness beyond expression. His absence an unspeakable sorrow’.
Thomas is mentioned on the Hawarden War Memorial and he and his brother William H. Campden are also mention on the Memorial Screen in St. Ethelwold’s Church, Shotton. Please click on the link to see William H. Campden’s story