Richard Bullen

Thornton Cleveleys War Memorial 1914-1918 | Index

Richard Bullen was born in Thornton on 26 June 1889 and baptised at Christ Church on 27 May 1894. He was the youngest of six sons and one daughter born to James Bullen and his wife Jenny Gregson who had married at Christ Church on 25 October 1873.

In the Census taken on 5 April 1891 the Bullen family were living on Fleetwood Road, Thornton and James was employed as a farm labourer. By 1901 they had moved to Ramper Road (now Victoria Road) and James was described as a spade labourer, presumably still working in agriculture. Richard, aged 11, was a scholar at Thornton Council School, Church Road.

On 18 July 1908, at the age of 19, Richard married Ellen Bamber. The marriage took place at the Parish Church of St. Andrew, in Wigan. Richard's occupation was a labourer and they both gave the address of 67 Springfield Road. Ellen was born in Poulton-le-Fylde on 25 June 1882, the eldest of six children of John Bamber, a labourer, and his wife Margaret Ellen Bond who married at St. Chad, Poulton le Fylde on 18 September 1881. Richard and Ellen's first child, John, had been born in Wigan before their marriage on 26 June 1908.

It was not long before they were back in our area because a second child, Margaret Ellen, was born in Thornton on 11 November 1909. In the Census on 2 April 1911, the Bullen family were at 11 Bull Street, Poulton-le-Fylde and Richard was a bricklayer's labourer. Their third child, Richard Thomas, was born on 6 September 1912. The electoral roll for 1913 shows that they lived at Alpha Cottage on Garfield Road, Cleveleys which later became North Promenade.

Just before war broke out, the Bullen family moved again to Pleasant Grove, Thornton living firstly at number 4 and later at number 5. Richard had become a labourer working for the United Alkali Company at Burn Naze. His war service record has not survived but we know that he joined the Royal Lancaster Regiment and was sent to France on 14 February 1915. He died in hospital from wounds received at the second battle of Ypres on 11 May 1915. He was aged 25.

Ellen received the news of her husband's death indirectly, later to be confirmed officially. She was pregnant with their fourth child, a girl, who was born on 29 October and named Jenny after Richard's mother. Pte. Richard Bullen, 1699, 1st/5th Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment was buried in Grave 29, Potijze Chateau Lawn Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

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