Victor Emanuel Durling
From Our Contribution
|Date of Birth||c1888|
|Place of Birth||Meopham, Gravesend, Kent, England|
|Death||10 Jan 1937|
|Place of Death||Gravesend, Kent, England|
|Age at Enlistment||27 years, 5 months|
5"7 ½" (1.71m) tall ; 137 lbs|
62.142 kg; fair complexion ; grey blue eyes ; fair hair
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||c/- Post Office, Kelmscott, Western Australia|
|Next of Kin||Father , Mr Albert Durling|
|Date of Enlistment||26 Jul 1915|
|Unit/Formation||11th Battalion, 11th Reinforcement transferred to 51st Battalion / 13th Brigade, 4th Division|
|Date of Embarkation||2 Nov 1915 ‒ 26 Nov 1915|
|Ship Embarked On||HMAT A38 Ulysses Fremantle to Port Suez|
|Date of Return||5 Feb 1918 ‒ 8 Apr 1918|
|Ship Returned On||SS Llanstephan Castle|
Wounded in Action 10 Jul 1916 at Poziéres |
Returned to Australia
Kelmscott War Memorial (West panel) |
Jarrahdale Honour Roll
ANZAC Memorial Park (Byford)
British War Medal |
Victor was still living with his family in England at the time of the 1911 census, being the oldest of 7 children ranging in age from 7 to 24. He was described as a carpenter working for a builder.
Victor is named in a UK Outwards Bound list of passengers on the migrant ship SS Orsova (Orient Line) that departed London for Fremantle, Australia on 2 Aug 1912. Listed as aged 24, a carpenter, intending to reside in Australia. The matching immigration sheet for Fremantle shows that the Orsova arrived in Fremantle on 3 Sep 1912. Stops on the way included Toulon, Naples and Colombo.
On entering Blackboy Hill camp, Victor was allocated to the 18th Depot Company, later transferring to the 11th reinforcements for the 11th Battalion. He travelled with them to Egypt, and following another months training on arrival he joined the 11th Battalion on 7 Jan 1916 when he was posted to A Company. On 1 Mar 1916 he was one of the earliest identified to join the newly formed 51st Battalion. Following its formation, the 51st Battalion undertook training in Egypt before making the journey from Alexandria to Marseilles in the HMT Ivernia during June 1916.
Entering the front lines for the first time in early July Victor was wounded by shellfire, with injuries to his right hand and arm. He was one of 6 casualties that resulted from intermittent shelling before his company rotated out of the front line in the Petillon Sector. Treated by 15th Field Ambulance and the 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station, he was admitted to the 8th Stationery Hospital on 12 Jul 1916 prior to embarking on the HS Jan Breydel in Boulogne on 15 Jul 1916 for transit to England where he entered the General Military Hospital in Colchester for corrective treatment the next day.
Released to No. 2 Command Depot in Weymouth on 23 Oct 1916, he is next transferred to the 13th Training Battalion Codford on 18 Nov 1916. Here he faced a District Court martial on 26 Mar 1917 having been held in custody for 34 days awaiting trial. He was charged with having been AWOL from 8:00am on 2 Jan 1917 until he reported back at 7:45 pm on 19 Feb 1917. Found guilty he was awarded 56 days of Field Punishment No.2 (see notes) and a total forfeiture of 139 day's pay (£34.15.0).
On 2 Jul 1917 he was transferred to the No. 2 Command Depot Weymouth to prepare for a return to Australia. However, on 1 Nov 1917 he was charged with having been AWOL from tattoo on 31 Oct 1917 until 8:00am on 1 Nov 1917. For this he was awarded 3 days confined to barracks and the forfeiture of a days pay.
Sent back to Australia due to his injuries, Victor was discharged by the 5th Military District on 4 Jul 1918.
The Sunday Times on 6 Aug 1916 p.9S lists Victor as wounded. The next week's issue corrects this to read, wounded, seriously.
In 1925 he had moved back to England and requested that his medals be forwarded to him there (Gravesend). At the time of his death his address was 37 Stanbrook-road Northfleet, Kent, but his place of death was the Gravesend and North Kent Hospital.
His will was probated on 19 February 1937, and he left £516 2s. 4d. to his wife Alice.