Leslie Walter Francis Clout, 18981916 (aged 17 years)

Name
Leslie Walter Francis Clout
Given names
Leslie Walter Francis
Surname
Clout
Birth September 13, 1898 26 23
Christening October 14, 1898 26 23 (aged 1 month)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Birth of a brotherStanley Edward Clout
November 24, 1900 (aged 2 years)
Christening of a brotherStanley Edward Clout
December 24, 1900 (aged 2 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Birth of a sisterMary Jane Clout
August 17, 1903 (aged 4 years)
Christening of a sisterMary Jane Clout
October 1, 1903 (aged 5 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Birth of a sisterAlice Elizabeth Clout
1907 (aged 8 years)
Christening of a sisterAlice Elizabeth Clout
July 22, 1907 (aged 8 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Event
Accident
January 15, 1910 (aged 11 years)
Note:

The Windsor and Richmond Gazette reported: 'Unusual excitement prevailed in Windsor on Thursday evening last when between 7 & 8 o'clock, the news spread that another accident had happened in the river. Very soon a large crowd of people assembled on the bank of Mr Gow's farm at Cornwallis just above Ben's Point, and it was found that George Brown, son of Mrs W Armour of Fitzgerald Street, Windsor, had been seriously injured. He lingered until about 3 pm on Monday, when he lapsed into unconsciousness, and it was realised that the end was very near, yet no effort to save his life was relaxed to the last. George, who would have attained his 18th year had he lived till next May, was one of the most popular lads in Windsor. Always gentlemanly and well behaved, with a civil word for everybody, he won the good opinion of all who knew him and his sad and untimely end is greatly deplored. It seems that on the evening of the accident, he went bathing with another boy, Leslie Clout aged 10 years. They were out in the middle of the river, and were about to leave the water and dress when they determined to have one more dive to see who would get a piece of floating board. Clout jumped into the water and Brown dived. There was a depth of about 2 feet, and the lad's head struck the sand bottom of the river. Young Clout soon saw that his mate was in trouble, and he would assuredly have drowned there only that Clout went to his rescue. Being only a fragile boy, he was able to get Brown out of the water and called two sons of Mr R Swords who were bathing a couple of hundred yards away. Meanwhile he pluckily saved the injured lad from drowning, who being perfectly helpless asked Clout to keep his head above water. One of the boys ran for further assistance, and Alfred Brooks hurried to the river and young Brown was carried to the bank. A crowd assembled and Constable Williams was soon on the scene. The injured boy was carried through the cornfields on to the Cornwallis Road, and his step father, Mr W Amour arrived, closely followed by Dr Callaghan. An ambulance had been procured from the hospital, and poor George was conveyed home by willing bearers. Dr Callaghan pronounced the case as a critical one, and during the night Dr Gibson was called in and the two doctors held a consultation. Very little hope of recovery was held out. The spine had been injured and the sufferer was paralyzed. He remained conscious for three days, and knew all his friends with the exception of occasional lapses when the temperature got very high - sometimes over 105 degrees. Everything possible was done for him. In response to a telegram, a trained nurse arrived by the 3.3.0 pm train on Friday afternoon and Dr Callaghan was in constant attendance. A sad feature of the occurence was that the lad's mother was in Sydney. She intended coming home by train which would have reached Windsor just about the time the accident happened, but missed the train and Mr Armour received a wire to that effect in the midst of his grief. Mrs Armour was completely prostrated when her son passed away. She had had her share of tribulation, truly. About 15 years ago, George's father died from the effects of an accident, which just over four years ago her younger son died through drinking a poisonous liquid in mistake for a cordial. Profound sympathy is felt for Mrs Armour and her family in this the third tragic ending which has overtaken those near and dear to her, and Mr Armour who was teaching the deceased his trade and was greatly attached to him. He was getting on well and was the makings of a good tradesman. The magisterial inquiry was held on Monday evening by Mr JB Johnsdton, when a verdict of death through injuries accidentally received. The funeral on Tuesday afternoon was largely attended despite the heavy rain which fell incessantly from noon till late in the evening. Among the large cortege of sympathizers all walking where a number of George's school fellows. A band comprised of members of the Salvation Army band and others preceded the hearse and played a funeral hymn. The funeral was an impressive one, and Rev N Jenkyn's touching remarks in the church added to the solumnity of the occasion. The internment took place in St. Mathew C of E Cemetery...Mr Chandler the undertaker'.

Event
Reward for bravery
after January 15, 1910 (aged 11 years)
Note:

'Rewarding Bravery A meeting of the subscribers to the fund to reward the bravery of Leslie Clout in saving the late George Brown from drowning when he was injured while bathing in the River, was held at the Council Chambers, Windsor on Tuesday night. There were present: ' Messrs J Ward (Major), AJ Morgan, J Jacobs, AH Hipwell, G Pye, HA Clements, J O'Brien, AR Walker-Smith, HM Moses and Rev G Thompson. Apologies were made on behalf of Rev A Dandie and Messrs W Armour and C Parker. Mr Jacobs, Hon Secretary stated that he had written to the secretary of the Royal Humane Society, and to Mr B Hall MLA, as requested by the initial meeting. He gave the Royal Humane Society the full details of the incident, and recommended young Clout for their consideration. He had as yet received no reply. Mr Hall had replied stating that he had intended on the day of writing to call on the President of the Royal Humane Society and urge the boy's claims to the Society's medal. The subsciption list showed that a sum of £15 had been collected. £7/10/- by Messrs Morgan and Walker-Smith and £6 by Messrs Hipwell and Clements, together with £1/10/- collected at the first meeting. Mr O'Brien proposed 'That the money be placed in the Savings Bank to the credit of Leslie Clout and Mr J Ward; in the event of the boy dying before reaching the age of 21, the money to be devoted to paying burial expenses, any balance to go to his parents. Seconded by Mr Walker-Smith. Rev G THompson and Mr Jacobs thought it would be a good idea to allow the boy to draw on the account, by consent of the trustees, should he require assistance to extend his education, or in any other commendable way. The Mayor questioned the wisdom of allowing the account to be touched. Mr Pye suggested that Messrs J Paine, and RW Walker be asked to act as Trustees. Mr Hipwell moved 'That Mr J Ward and Mr Geo Pye be appointed to act as Trustees.' Mr Pye was one of the first to move in the matter and both he and the Mayor had shown their interest by their regular attendance at all meetings. Mr Thompson said he would like to see a provision in enabling the trustees to operate upon the account in the event of the boy requiring assistance before he reached the age of 21 years. He admitted there was a good deal to recommend the fixing of the account. The fact of the money being placed to his credit might arouse in the boy a commendable desire to add to it. It was decided that the Principal of the Superior Public School be requested to inform Leslie Clout before the whole school what had been done. Votes of thanks were passed to the collectors, the Hon Secretary and the Mayor for the interest they had taken in the matter. It was resolved to publish the subscription lists. The proprietors of the local paper offered to do this gratis, and were accorded a vote of thanks...' A list of those who subscribed and the amounts donated was printed in the Gazette on 13 Feb 1910.

Birth of a sisterMarjorie May Clout
October 26, 1910 (aged 12 years)
Christening of a sisterMarjorie May Clout
May 26, 1911 (aged 12 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Birth of a brotherKenneth Bruce Clout
July 22, 1912 (aged 13 years)
Christening of a brotherKenneth Bruce Clout
August 29, 1912 (aged 13 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Birth of a sisterMyrtle Joyce Clout
June 19, 1915 (aged 16 years)
Military
World War I
November 29, 1915 (aged 17 years)

Note:

When Leslie enlisted on 29 Nov 1915, he was unmarried and aged 18 years and 3 months. He listed his mother, Mrs M J Clout, Catherine Street, Windsor, New South Wales as his next of kin and requested that his pay be sent to her. He put his address as Catherine Street, Windsor, New South Wales. His occupation was a machinist, and his education was listed as Windsor Public School.

His medical report revealed no distinctive marks, a height of 5'4", weight 110 pounds, chest 33", sallow complexion, grey eyes, hair light brown and of Church of England religion.

Leslie was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 15th Reinforcement. He embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A15 Star Of England on 8 March 1916. His unit from the Nominal Roll was the 60th Battalion.

He travelled from Alexandria, Egypt to Marseilles, France on the transport 'Kinfauns Castle' on 29 Jun 1916 and by 28 Jul he was reported missing.

Christening of a sisterMyrtle Joyce Clout
December 29, 1915 (aged 17 years)
Address: St. Matthews Church of England
Death July 19, 1916 (aged 17 years)
Cause of death: Exploding shell
Note:

Leslie was killed in action during active service in World War I. His body was not identified and a Court of Enquiry judged him to be dead. Leslie died before he could use money collected for him in 1910 when he saved a boy's life. The money was invested for him, to become his to use after he turned 21 years (details above).

Statement, 2347 Corporal O. EASTMAN, 59th Bn (patient, No 7 Canadian General Hospital, Etaples), 23 March 1917: 'He went over with me in the July 19th. stunt, about 5.30 p.m. in the afternoon. About 50 yards over, a shell exploded amongst us, and blew Clout literally to pieces. He was only two yards from me at the time.'

Burial
Cemetery: VC Corner, Australian Cemetery Memorial
Note:

Leslie has no known grave. His life is commemorated at VC Corner, Fromelles, France, V.C. Corner (Panel No 20), Australian Cemetery Memorial: 'In memory of Leslie Walter Francis Clout Private 4965 60th Bn., Australian Infantry, A.I.F., who died Wednesday 19th July 1916. Age 18.'

Fromelles is a villkage 16 kilometres west of Lille and VC Corner Australian Cemetery is 2 kilometres north-west of Fromelles on the road to Sailly. The village of Fromelles was secured by French cavalry and the 2nd Royal Irish on 17th October 1914, but when trench warfare began it was behind the German lines. On the morning of the 19th July 1916, after a preliminary bonbardment, the 5th Australian and 61st (South Midland) Divisions undertook what is officially known as the Attack at Fromelles, advancing from the Rue Tilleroy near Picantin. The 61st Diviision attack failed in the end, with the loss of over 1000 officers and soldiers out of 3,410 who took part in it. Australian Australian left and centre reached the German trenches and held their second line during the day and night, but the right was held off by a fierce machine gun barrage and only reached the front line in isolated groups. The action was broken off on the morning of the 20th, after the 5th Australian Division had lost over 5,000 officers and men. It was the first serious engagement of the Australian forces in France, and the only one which achieved no success.

VC Corner Cemetery was made after the Armistice. It contains the graves of over 400 Australian soldiers who fell in the Attack at Fromelles and whose bodies were found on the battlefield, but the identification of even a single body proved to be impossible. It was therefore decided not to mark the individual graves, but to record on a screen wall the names of all the Australian soldiers who fell in the engagement, some of whose bodies were never found. There are now over 1,000 1914-1918 war casualties commemorated at this site.

In the cemetery stand a cross, behind which is a wall bearing the names of the fallen and the inscription:

'In honour of 410 unknown Australian soldiers here buried, who were among the following 1,299 Officers, Non-Commissioned Officers and Men of the Australian Imperial Force, killed in the Attack at Fromelles, July 19th and 20th, 1916.'

Family with parents
father
18721942
Birth: 1872 19Rouse Hill, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Death: August 31, 1942Rouse Hill, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
mother
18751946
Birth: 1875Richmond River, Northern Rivers, New South Wales, Australia
Death: August 21, 1946Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Marriage
Marriage: July 19, 1893Vineyard, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
-4 years
elder sister
1889
Birth: April 28, 1889 17 14Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death:
5 years
elder sister
18931945
Birth: October 3, 1893 21 18Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: March 10, 1945Botany, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
18 months
elder brother
18951895
Birth: March 22, 1895 23 20Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: April 4, 1895Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
16 months
elder sister
1896
Birth: July 12, 1896 24 21Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death:
2 years
himself
18981916
Birth: September 13, 1898 26 23Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: July 19, 1916France
2 years
younger brother
19001958
Birth: November 24, 1900 28 25Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: 1958Ryde, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
3 years
younger sister
19031943
Birth: August 17, 1903 31 28Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: November 16, 1943Newtown, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
4 years
younger sister
1907
Birth: 1907 35 32Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death:
4 years
younger sister
19101966
Birth: October 26, 1910 38 35Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: 1966Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
21 months
younger brother
19121966
Birth: July 22, 1912 40 37Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: June 12, 1966Sydney City, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
3 years
younger sister
19151999
Birth: June 19, 1915 43 40Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: May 1999
6 years
younger brother
19211991
Birth: February 12, 1921 49 46Windsor, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Death: February 9, 1991Richmond, Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia
Event

The Windsor and Richmond Gazette reported: 'Unusual excitement prevailed in Windsor on Thursday evening last when between 7 & 8 o'clock, the news spread that another accident had happened in the river. Very soon a large crowd of people assembled on the bank of Mr Gow's farm at Cornwallis just above Ben's Point, and it was found that George Brown, son of Mrs W Armour of Fitzgerald Street, Windsor, had been seriously injured. He lingered until about 3 pm on Monday, when he lapsed into unconsciousness, and it was realised that the end was very near, yet no effort to save his life was relaxed to the last. George, who would have attained his 18th year had he lived till next May, was one of the most popular lads in Windsor. Always gentlemanly and well behaved, with a civil word for everybody, he won the good opinion of all who knew him and his sad and untimely end is greatly deplored. It seems that on the evening of the accident, he went bathing with another boy, Leslie Clout aged 10 years. They were out in the middle of the river, and were about to leave the water and dress when they determined to have one more dive to see who would get a piece of floating board. Clout jumped into the water and Brown dived. There was a depth of about 2 feet, and the lad's head struck the sand bottom of the river. Young Clout soon saw that his mate was in trouble, and he would assuredly have drowned there only that Clout went to his rescue. Being only a fragile boy, he was able to get Brown out of the water and called two sons of Mr R Swords who were bathing a couple of hundred yards away. Meanwhile he pluckily saved the injured lad from drowning, who being perfectly helpless asked Clout to keep his head above water. One of the boys ran for further assistance, and Alfred Brooks hurried to the river and young Brown was carried to the bank. A crowd assembled and Constable Williams was soon on the scene. The injured boy was carried through the cornfields on to the Cornwallis Road, and his step father, Mr W Amour arrived, closely followed by Dr Callaghan. An ambulance had been procured from the hospital, and poor George was conveyed home by willing bearers. Dr Callaghan pronounced the case as a critical one, and during the night Dr Gibson was called in and the two doctors held a consultation. Very little hope of recovery was held out. The spine had been injured and the sufferer was paralyzed. He remained conscious for three days, and knew all his friends with the exception of occasional lapses when the temperature got very high - sometimes over 105 degrees. Everything possible was done for him. In response to a telegram, a trained nurse arrived by the 3.3.0 pm train on Friday afternoon and Dr Callaghan was in constant attendance. A sad feature of the occurence was that the lad's mother was in Sydney. She intended coming home by train which would have reached Windsor just about the time the accident happened, but missed the train and Mr Armour received a wire to that effect in the midst of his grief. Mrs Armour was completely prostrated when her son passed away. She had had her share of tribulation, truly. About 15 years ago, George's father died from the effects of an accident, which just over four years ago her younger son died through drinking a poisonous liquid in mistake for a cordial. Profound sympathy is felt for Mrs Armour and her family in this the third tragic ending which has overtaken those near and dear to her, and Mr Armour who was teaching the deceased his trade and was greatly attached to him. He was getting on well and was the makings of a good tradesman. The magisterial inquiry was held on Monday evening by Mr JB Johnsdton, when a verdict of death through injuries accidentally received. The funeral on Tuesday afternoon was largely attended despite the heavy rain which fell incessantly from noon till late in the evening. Among the large cortege of sympathizers all walking where a number of George's school fellows. A band comprised of members of the Salvation Army band and others preceded the hearse and played a funeral hymn. The funeral was an impressive one, and Rev N Jenkyn's touching remarks in the church added to the solumnity of the occasion. The internment took place in St. Mathew C of E Cemetery...Mr Chandler the undertaker'.

Event

'Rewarding Bravery A meeting of the subscribers to the fund to reward the bravery of Leslie Clout in saving the late George Brown from drowning when he was injured while bathing in the River, was held at the Council Chambers, Windsor on Tuesday night. There were present: ' Messrs J Ward (Major), AJ Morgan, J Jacobs, AH Hipwell, G Pye, HA Clements, J O'Brien, AR Walker-Smith, HM Moses and Rev G Thompson. Apologies were made on behalf of Rev A Dandie and Messrs W Armour and C Parker. Mr Jacobs, Hon Secretary stated that he had written to the secretary of the Royal Humane Society, and to Mr B Hall MLA, as requested by the initial meeting. He gave the Royal Humane Society the full details of the incident, and recommended young Clout for their consideration. He had as yet received no reply. Mr Hall had replied stating that he had intended on the day of writing to call on the President of the Royal Humane Society and urge the boy's claims to the Society's medal. The subsciption list showed that a sum of £15 had been collected. £7/10/- by Messrs Morgan and Walker-Smith and £6 by Messrs Hipwell and Clements, together with £1/10/- collected at the first meeting. Mr O'Brien proposed 'That the money be placed in the Savings Bank to the credit of Leslie Clout and Mr J Ward; in the event of the boy dying before reaching the age of 21, the money to be devoted to paying burial expenses, any balance to go to his parents. Seconded by Mr Walker-Smith. Rev G THompson and Mr Jacobs thought it would be a good idea to allow the boy to draw on the account, by consent of the trustees, should he require assistance to extend his education, or in any other commendable way. The Mayor questioned the wisdom of allowing the account to be touched. Mr Pye suggested that Messrs J Paine, and RW Walker be asked to act as Trustees. Mr Hipwell moved 'That Mr J Ward and Mr Geo Pye be appointed to act as Trustees.' Mr Pye was one of the first to move in the matter and both he and the Mayor had shown their interest by their regular attendance at all meetings. Mr Thompson said he would like to see a provision in enabling the trustees to operate upon the account in the event of the boy requiring assistance before he reached the age of 21 years. He admitted there was a good deal to recommend the fixing of the account. The fact of the money being placed to his credit might arouse in the boy a commendable desire to add to it. It was decided that the Principal of the Superior Public School be requested to inform Leslie Clout before the whole school what had been done. Votes of thanks were passed to the collectors, the Hon Secretary and the Mayor for the interest they had taken in the matter. It was resolved to publish the subscription lists. The proprietors of the local paper offered to do this gratis, and were accorded a vote of thanks...' A list of those who subscribed and the amounts donated was printed in the Gazette on 13 Feb 1910.

Military

When Leslie enlisted on 29 Nov 1915, he was unmarried and aged 18 years and 3 months. He listed his mother, Mrs M J Clout, Catherine Street, Windsor, New South Wales as his next of kin and requested that his pay be sent to her. He put his address as Catherine Street, Windsor, New South Wales. His occupation was a machinist, and his education was listed as Windsor Public School.

His medical report revealed no distinctive marks, a height of 5'4", weight 110 pounds, chest 33", sallow complexion, grey eyes, hair light brown and of Church of England religion.

Leslie was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 15th Reinforcement. He embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A15 Star Of England on 8 March 1916. His unit from the Nominal Roll was the 60th Battalion.

He travelled from Alexandria, Egypt to Marseilles, France on the transport 'Kinfauns Castle' on 29 Jun 1916 and by 28 Jul he was reported missing.

Death

Leslie was killed in action during active service in World War I. His body was not identified and a Court of Enquiry judged him to be dead. Leslie died before he could use money collected for him in 1910 when he saved a boy's life. The money was invested for him, to become his to use after he turned 21 years (details above).

Statement, 2347 Corporal O. EASTMAN, 59th Bn (patient, No 7 Canadian General Hospital, Etaples), 23 March 1917: 'He went over with me in the July 19th. stunt, about 5.30 p.m. in the afternoon. About 50 yards over, a shell exploded amongst us, and blew Clout literally to pieces. He was only two yards from me at the time.'

Burial

Leslie has no known grave. His life is commemorated at VC Corner, Fromelles, France, V.C. Corner (Panel No 20), Australian Cemetery Memorial: 'In memory of Leslie Walter Francis Clout Private 4965 60th Bn., Australian Infantry, A.I.F., who died Wednesday 19th July 1916. Age 18.'

Fromelles is a villkage 16 kilometres west of Lille and VC Corner Australian Cemetery is 2 kilometres north-west of Fromelles on the road to Sailly. The village of Fromelles was secured by French cavalry and the 2nd Royal Irish on 17th October 1914, but when trench warfare began it was behind the German lines. On the morning of the 19th July 1916, after a preliminary bonbardment, the 5th Australian and 61st (South Midland) Divisions undertook what is officially known as the Attack at Fromelles, advancing from the Rue Tilleroy near Picantin. The 61st Diviision attack failed in the end, with the loss of over 1000 officers and soldiers out of 3,410 who took part in it. Australian Australian left and centre reached the German trenches and held their second line during the day and night, but the right was held off by a fierce machine gun barrage and only reached the front line in isolated groups. The action was broken off on the morning of the 20th, after the 5th Australian Division had lost over 5,000 officers and men. It was the first serious engagement of the Australian forces in France, and the only one which achieved no success.

VC Corner Cemetery was made after the Armistice. It contains the graves of over 400 Australian soldiers who fell in the Attack at Fromelles and whose bodies were found on the battlefield, but the identification of even a single body proved to be impossible. It was therefore decided not to mark the individual graves, but to record on a screen wall the names of all the Australian soldiers who fell in the engagement, some of whose bodies were never found. There are now over 1,000 1914-1918 war casualties commemorated at this site.

In the cemetery stand a cross, behind which is a wall bearing the names of the fallen and the inscription:

'In honour of 410 unknown Australian soldiers here buried, who were among the following 1,299 Officers, Non-Commissioned Officers and Men of the Australian Imperial Force, killed in the Attack at Fromelles, July 19th and 20th, 1916.'