Edgar Charles Ingram (1896 -1918)
2nd Lieutenant ,Royal Warwickshire Regiment, attached 7th Norfolk Regiment
Formerly Lance Corporal 5492. 20th Battalion London Regiment
Born in Yardley in 1896, Edgar was the youngest son, by many years, of Walter William Ingram (1856-1935), a Post Office telegraphist, and of Eliza Stevens (1858-1935), daughter of an engineer. The family lived at 90, Wilton Road, Sparkhill.
Edgar worked at Wilkinson & Riddell Ltd., a large drapers’ wholesaler in Cherry Street in central Birmingham.
He first served with the 20th Battalion of the London Regiment, on the Western Front from June to November 1916, the period of the intense fighting of the Battle of the Somme, becoming a Lance Corporal.
Edgar then served in Mesopotamia from November 1916 to May 1917, and was selected for officer training in October. Commissioned on 23rd November 1917, Edgar joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment as a subaltern, a second lieutenant. The average life expectancy of a junior officer in the trenches was about six weeks.
In late March 1918 the Germans launched a Spring Offensive on the Western Front, around Saint Quentin. The first assault was Operation Michael, creating a battle that lasted from 21st March to 5th April. Casualties were huge – more than a quarter of a million on each side. The ground being fought over was much the same as the Battle of the Somme.
On 21st March, the first day of the offensive, 2nd Lieutenant Ingram was posted as missing in action. It was mistakenly recorded in Birmingham that he was a prisoner of war. It was later deemed that he had been killed in action on that day. Edgar’s body was never found, and he is commemorated on the Pozières memorial.