To mark the 100th Anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War, Brunel University London Archives has been compiling detailed biographies of students and staff who died fighting in the conflict. Using archive material such as the roll of honour, student application forms, student magazines, photographs and information held externally, for instance, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, we have found a wealth of information about each individual, including tales of bravery and heroic action.
We are now ready to launch the detailed biographies of students and staff from Borough Road College, one of our predecessor colleges. Originally established by Joseph Lancaster and the British and Foreign School Society, the College merged with Maria Grey College and Chiswick Polytechnic in 1976 to become West London Institute of Higher Education which later merged with Brunel University in 1995. Seven hundred and fifty eight students and twenty one members (and former members) of staff from Borough Road College went to war. One hundred and fifteen student and five members of staff perished. During the war, 47 individuals were awarded military honours including five Distinguished Service Order (DSO) medals, 18 Military Cross (MC) medals and 12 Military Medal (MM) medals. Other medals include a Meritorious Service Medal, mention in dispatches, mention in corps orders, two 1914 Star medal, a Croix de Guerre and a Chevalier de la Couronne.
This project is the result of a year of research undertaken by Ginny Dawe-Woodings (student volunteer) helped by Sara Brimble (student volunteer) under the supervision of the Archivist Phaedra Casey.
Brunel University London Archives would like to thank Mr Douglas Craik for his support for this project and the valuable information he supplied, and Ginny and Sara for all their hard work.