Frederick Hagger was born on the 26th April 1886 at Wallington near Baldock.
To begin with his mother, Eliza Hagger, raised him alone and at the time of the 1891 census they were living with her mother at Mill End, Sandon. Later that year Eliza married Ralph Seymour at Royston. They had seven children three of whom died before the 1911 census.
In the 1901 census the family were living at Cottered and Frederick was employed as a bricklayer’s labourer. A year later he had enlisted in the Army.
Frederick has two Army Service Records which have both survived. His first Service Record shows that he signed up for short service with 3 years in the Colours and 9 on Reserve. He was Attested on 8th August 1902 at Bedford as Gunner 11720 with the Royal Regiment of Artillery, the Royal Garrison Artillery.
He supplied the following details: That he was born in Wallington, Baldock Hertfordshire, his age was 18 years, his occupation was as a builder’s labourer, that he had lived at home for the last 3 years, he was not an apprentice, that he was unmarried and had never been sentenced to imprisonment. He also stated he was a member of the Yeomanry, 4th Brigade, Bedford Regiment.
He had been medically examined at the Station Hospital, Bedford on 6th August 1902 and the following recorded: His apparent age was 18 years, his height was 5 feet 10 1/10 inches, his weight was 134 lbs, his chest measured 33 inches with maximum expansion to 35 ½ inches. His complexion was fresh, his eyes were hazel and his hair black. He had the following distinctive marks, a mole in his right armpit and a red birth mark on left side of his head, neck and cheek. He said his Religion was Church of England.
He gave details of his next of kin as his mother, Mrs E. Seymour of Brook End, Cottered near Buntingford with younger siblings John and Susan.
On the 9th August 1902 he joined the Regiment at Great Yarmouth and 13 days later was posted to the 12th Company. Six months later on the 4th February 1903 he was posted to the 10th Company and began service at Gibraltar.
On the 4th December 1903 he was awarded a Certificate of Education 3rd Class and on the 1st August 1904, he was granted his 1st Good Conduct Badge. He was posted to the 9th Company on the 25th September 1904 and six months later he was awarded his Certificate of Education 2nd Class.
On the 11th March 1905 he was posted to Depot and began the journey back to the United Kingdom arriving on the 16th. On the 24th he was posted to the 21st Company and he remained with them until on the 7th August 1905 when he was transferred to the Reserve at the end of his three years.
Re-joined The Colours and Service In India.
Two months later on the 23rd October 1905 he clearly decided the Army life was what he enjoyed as he re-joined the Colours to complete 8 years’ service. On the 27th he was posted to the 45th Company.
On the 13th January 1906 he was posted to the 51st Company and began service in India. On the 23rd April 1906 he was granted Class 1 Service Pay at 6d per day and a year later on the 11th February 1907 he was appointed as a paid Bombardier.
On the 23rd October 1907 he was granted his second Good Conduct Badge, and, on the 9th February 1908, he qualified in Gun Laying. !908 and 1909 were not good years as he was hospitalised at Agra on several occasions with Malaria.
In December 1909 he re-qualified in Gun Laying. On the 31st May 1910 he reverted to the rank of Gunner at his own request and the following day he was posted to the 76th Company.
On the 12th October 1910 he extended his service to complete 12 years with the colours and on the 1st November, he was posted to the 94th Company. In December 1912 he qualified in Range Taking.
Home From India.
On the 20th March 1913 he was posted to the 16th Company returned to serve at “Home”. On the 1st July 1913 he again re-qualified in Gun Laying.
On the 1st January 1914 there is a comment about Frederick recorded by his Captain which reads: “A steady, honest and reliable man. Well educated, quiet and reserved in manner”.
By the 8th August 1914 he would have completed his 12 years’ service and he would have been on leave prior to this and he used this leave period to join the Police.
His Police Form 3 Record of Service still exists and shows that he was born on the 26th March 1886 at Redhill (near Wallington, Baldock), his height as 5 feet 11 ½ inches, his chest measurements as 36 – 37 ½ inches, his complexion as fresh, his eyes as hazel and his hair as black. It said that his previous occupation was as a builder’s labourer for a W. Beadle of Cottered. It also recorded that he could ride a bicycle and could swim.
He had a medical with the Force Surgeon on the 11th July 1914 and was Appointed on the 22nd July and started his Probationary training at R Division Headquarters at Hatfield. He is believed to have started his training with PC’s William Henry Williams, Herbert Thomas Farrer, Leonard Howard, Henry Owen, John Robert Rogers and William Henry Wightman. All seven of them are listed together on General Order 118 of 21st July 1915 (see below) as being stationed in R Division and having been recalled to their military units. None had been issued with a Warrant or Collar Number indicating that they were all new recruits. The Police Service Records for Howard and Rogers also survived and all three show an Appointment date of 22nd July 1914, making a strong case for Wightman, Owen and Williams to have joined at the same time.
General Order 118 of 21st July 1915 is a list of 96 officers which included the Chief Constable, 43 Constables who were Army reservists who were recalled and 50 Constables and 2 Sergeants who volunteered for military service. Frederick is shown as Police Constable, with no number, Hagger F. R Division recalled to the Royal Garrison Artillery on 30th July 1914.
Army Service During The War.
On the 31st August 1914 he was posted to the 112th Heavy Company, Royal Garrison Artillery.
On the 2nd September 1914 Frederick, who is shown as a Gunner in the Royal Garrison Artillery, married Susan May Seymour at the St Andrew and St Philip Church at Kensington. They went on to have five children. First was Evelyn Susan May born 1915 at Kensington, then Florence E. Kathleen born 1916 at Kensington, then Gordon Aubrey John born 1920 at Hitchin, then Marjorie Joan born 1923 at Hitchin and finally Doris born 1925 at Hitchin.
On the 4th September 1914 he was medically re-examined at Weymouth and found to be fit for mobilisation. The next day he landed in France and 2 days later he was promoted to Corporal. On the 10th October 1914 he was promoted to Sergeant
And then on the 7th August 1915 he was Discharged at Gosport on the completion of his 1st Period of Service.
On the 3rd September 1915 Frederick wrote a letter to his Regiment:
“Sir, Having taken my discharge on 9th August 1915 with 13 years’ service, I respectfully wish to enquire if I could re-enlist again in the RGA for the duration of the war, as I am desirous of doing so. Sir, I have the honour to be your obedient servant Frederick Hagger late Sgt. 112 H.B. R.G.A., B.E. Force”.
Beneath this is written:
“Sir, There does not appear to have been any instructions issued to prevent the re-enlistment of NCO’s or men discharged on completion of engagement who declined to continue”.
On the 7th September 1915 The following letter was sent to him from the Royal Garrison Record Office Dover:
“With reference to your application of the 3rd Inst to re-enlist for the duration of the war, forwarded to this office by the Officer Commanding No. 2 Depot, you are informed if so desirous you should place yourself in communication with Captain J. Hall O.C. 40th Division Armoured Column, Town Hall, Hammersmith, as that officer is looking out for Sergeants and N.C. Officers for that column. Officer I/C Records Royal Garrison Artillery”.
Frederick promptly re-enlisted and his second Army Service Record shows that he re-joined as Gunner 293199 in the 140th (Hammersmith) Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery. He was Attested on 10th September 1915 at Hammersmith for the duration of the war.
The following information was recorded:
He gave his address as 132, Southam Street, Westbourne Park (the home address of his parents-in-law), his age as 31 years 1 month and his trade as a builder’s labourer. He stated he was married and that he had previous military service as Sergeant 11720 in the Royal Garrison Artillery having been discharged on the 7th August 1915.
His description was taken again at his medical and recorded as: Apparent age: 31 years 1 month, Height 5 feet 11 ½ inches, weight: 142 lbs, Chest 37 ½ inches expansion 3 ½ inches, Physical development: Good, Distinctive marks: Mole right armpit, red birth mark left side neck, head and cheek, large tattoo front chest, both arms freely tattooed.
The day after his Attestation he was appointed Acting Sergeant and then on the 28th October 1915 he was promoted Sergeant. On the 14th April 1916 he left for France from Southampton arriving at Le Havre the following day.
On the 19th September 1917 he was granted 10 days leave to the UK. In October 1917 he spent 8 days in a Field Hospital with General Debility and then in February 1918 he was admitted to Hospital at Dammes Camiers with Malaria for 16 days.
He had two further periods of rest, the first for 14 days from the 30th July 1918 at the Second Army Rest Camp and the second from 4th October 1918 back in the UK for another 14 days.
On the 22nd November 1918 he was appointed Acting Base Quarter Master Sergeant
Until on the 7th January 1919 he returned to the Home Establishment at Shorncliffe for release on demobilisation.
On the 9th January 1919 he was issued with Army Form Z11, Protection Certificate and Certificate of Identity, granting him 28 days leave.
He was later awarded the 1914 star and the Victory and British War medals as well as the Clasp and Roses.
On the 6th February 1919 he was transferred to the Army reserve.
Re-joining The Police.
Frederick was medically re-examined on the 13th January 1919 and found to be fit for Police duties, and he was re-appointed the same day. However, he did not resume his training at Headquarters until the 11th March.
General Order 93 of 13th April 1919 announced the postings of eight recruit Constables who were being brought on the Roster for duty and were being transferred from Headquarters to Divisions. Police Constable 154 F. Hagger was posted to E Division at Hitchin from the 11th April 1919. Each officer had to be Attested and the Superintendents concerned had to report to the Chief Constable when this had been done showing date and place of Attestation and before whom taken. Frederick was Attested on the 12th April at Hitchin.
General Order 155 of 11th July 1919 notified Frederick that he would receive an increase in pay from £2/3/0 to £2/7/0 per week from 10th April 1919.
The 1919 Electoral Roll lists Frederick as living at 66, Old Park Road, Hitchin but General Order 171 of 30th July 1919 meant he would be moving as he was transferred from Hitchin to Ickleford, still in E Division, on 1st August 1919. The Electoral Rolls from 1920 to 1925 list him as living at 25, Chambers Lane, Ickleford.
General Order 180 of 11th August 1919 informed Frederick of an increased rate of pay from £3/18/0 to £4/0/0 per week from 22nd July 1919.
In December 1919 he passed his Ambulance certificate, an important qualification which entitled him to wear a badge on his lower left tunic sleeve to show he was trained in basic First Aid.
General Order 138 of 12th August 1921 and General Order 95 of 31st July 1922 informed Frederick of increases in his pay from £4/2/0 to £4/4/0 per week from 22nd July 1921 and from £4/4/0 to £4/6/0 per week from 22nd July 1922 respectively.
Mutual Aid To Norfolk Police.
General Order 68 of 11th April 1923 instructed officers to assist with dealing with a strike by Agricultural Workers in Norfolk.
“The following detachment of the Hertford County Constabulary is detailed for duty in the County of Norfolk as from 11th April 1923 inclusive:
Rank No. Name Division Station
Inspr. Wright H. E Stevenage
PS 69 Stapleton W.J. A Ware
PS 102 Morse A. D Great Berkhamsted
PC 129 Burch S.G. A Much Hadham
PC 163 Cannon R. A Ware
PC 304 Whyman G.A A Buntingford
PC 342 Milton G. A Sawbridgeworth
PC 172 Wood S. B Hoddesdon
PC 182 Reece A. B Essendon
PC 200 Bangs A. B Hertford
PC 227 Paterson J. B Nup End
PC 183 Godfrey P.C. D Wheathampstead
PC 343 Green C. D Great Berkhamsted
PC 58 Bailiff T.A. D Tring
PC 213 Gray F. E Datchworth
PC 205 Capell T. E Barley
PC 124 Godfrey C.E.M E Sandon
PC 139 James W. E Offley
PC 154 Hagger F. E. Ickleford
PC 214 Parker T. E Royston
The detachment will proceed by nearest rail route to Cambridge arriving G.N. Railway 10.41 a.m. and G.E. Railway 11.38 a.m. On arrival at Cambridge Railway Station Inspr. H. Wright will call the roll, take charge of the detachment and proceed leaving Cambridge G.E Railway at 11.45 a.m. arriving at 4.12 p.m. On arrival at Holt the Inspector will march the detachment to the Police Station and report to Superintendent Levi Collyer. Superintendents will make arrangements for the above officers to reach Cambridge on Wednesday 11th April 1923 by the time stated. Dress: Great coat, Cloth Jacket, 2nd Trousers, 2nd Cloth Helmet, Leggings and usual appointments. Railway fares may be advanced if required and an account for same will be rendered to Headquarters for repayment”.
General Order 84 of 26th April 1923 was an update on the mutual aid given with regard to the strike of Agricultural Workers in Norfolk.
“Reference Order No. 68/1923.
The members of the detachment of the Hertford County Constabulary having returned to their respective stations the Chief Constable has much pleasure in publishing for general information the following extract from a letter received from the Chief Constable of the County of Norfolk, under date 23rd April 1923:
Begins: “On behalf of the Norfolk Police Authority, and myself, I would wish to thank you most sincerely for so kindly and quickly coming to our help. As the result of your timely aid the intimidation and hindering of workers was at once stopped. I need hardly say that your men behaved themselves at all times in an exemplary manner and carried out all the duties they were asked to perform to my entire satisfaction. Every effort was made to make them as comfortable as possible under the circumstances and I hope that they will carry back a happy memory of their short tour of duty in Norfolk.” Ends. The Chief Constable endorses the remarks of the Chief Constable of Norfolk and is gratified that the members of the Detachment maintained the high standard and upheld the reputation of the Hertford County Constabulary”.
General Order 143 of 11th August 1923 and General Order 125 of 12th August 1924 informed Frederick of further increases of pay from £4/6/0 to £4/8/0 per week from 22nd July 1923 and from £4/8/0 to £4/10/0 per week from 22nd July 1924 respectively.
On The Move From Ickleford.
General Order 208 of 31st December informed Frederick that on the 9th January 1925 he woulld be transferring from E Division at Ickleford to E Division at Stevenage, to occupy the house vacated by Constable Potter. The Electoral Rolls for 1925 to 1930 list Frederick and Susan Hagger as living at 32, Grove Road, Stevenage. Frederick remained at Stevenage until he retired.
Retirement And After The Police.
On the 21st July 1939 Frederick retired on completion of his 25 years’ service receiving a pension of £149/10/5 per annum.
The 1939 Register shows him as a retired Police Officer living with Susan and his family near the schools in Braughing.
Frederick died at Hitchin on the 23rd January 1967.