Benjamin McCrea was born in 1884 in Heaton the son of Joseph McCrea and Sarah, nee Wright.By 1901 the family are living at 37 Airedale Road and Joseph is working as a jobbing gardener on his own account and Benjamin at 17 years of age is working for his father as a gardener’s labourer.On the 27th December 1900 Benjamin enlisted as Private 6953 in the Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment, 33rd and 76th foot. Benjamin appears on the 1901 census as a gardener’s
labourer living at home so whether he was with his Regiment is debatable. On the 11th June 1902 Benjamin further enlisted as Private 4493 in the 1st battalion of the Scots Guards at the age of 18 years and two months. His records confirm that he had previously served in the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment. In 1911 Benjamin was again living at home with his family. Benjamin at 25 years of age is a waiter in a Refreshment Room.
On the 19th of August, 1912 at St Luke’s Church, Eccleshill Benjamin married Annie Rollinson who was 28 years of age living at 4 Intake Road.Benjamin was now working as a stoker. Benjamin and Annie lived at 4 Intake Road where their son Harry was born in 1913. When Benjamin enlisted he was employed by Edward Ripley and Son Ltd.In June 1915 he enlisted as Private 13867 in the 3rd Reserve Battalion of the Scots Guards.
This Battalion did not see service abroad and remained in Britain for the whole of the war. Benjamin died on the 18th March 1917 in the London General Hospital. He was 38 years of age and he is buried in Bowling Cemetery, Bradford.He left his effects to his widow Annie who received £5.9.2d on the 19th May 1916 and a War Gratuity of £3.0.0d on the 15th September 1919.
. Researched and written by Jean Britteon, to whom many thanks