Walter Novell (1887-1918) - Cpl 120616 Royal Field ArtilleryWalter Novellwas one of a number of young men who found themselves working as casual labourers in Barns Green at the outset of the Great War.Walter’s family were not particularly local – we find them in Elstead in Surrey in the 1901 and 1911 census – but by 1911 Walter, who started working life at 13 as a bakers boy, was lodging in Barns Green and working as a gardener.Walter was the eldest of the six sons of Lewis and Alice Novell (nee Wisdom) and was born in Elstead in 1887. He enlisted in Horsham and joined the Royal Field Artillery, serving with 285thBrigade - a second line Territorial unit formed during the War which went overseas on active service as part of the Army’s 57th Division in February 1917.The highly detailed War Diary of the 285thBrigade documents almost every shot they fired from the moment they crossed the Channel and moved to support the right sector of II Anzac Corps, north of Le Tilleloy on the 25thFebruary 1917. The whole 57thDivision then remained in France and Flanders until demobilisation in November 1918.During this time Walter would have seen action in the Second Battle of Passchendaele (October/November 1917), the Battles of the Lys (April 1918) and the second Battles of Arras in August/September 1918.It was shortly after this latter action at Boisleux-St-Marc south of Arras that Walter was killed.The Brigade was in action in support of the efforts of the Canadian Corps to secure their objectives in the Battle of Canal du Nord. The War Diary records a considerable number of actions and counteractions for the period from the 21stSeptember to the 1stOctober. It was during one of these that Walter died and since he served with C Battery it seems most likely that he was one of the two ORs killed on the 30th September rather than on the 29th as recorded.What is clear is that he was originally buried on the battlefield before being reinterred, after the armistice, in the Naves Communal Cemetery Extension.For his service Walter was awarded the Victory and British War Medals.He is remembered on both the Memorial in St Nicholas Church and, with his brother, on the Memorial in Kidmore End in Oxfordshire.