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Letter: Anyone Out There Related To Stoughton Barracks Soldier ‘Chuck’ Sheffield?

Published on: 11 Dec, 2016
Updated on: 11 Dec, 2016

From Dave Middleton

Following on from David Rose’s Where is This? column in the Dragon on November 11, I was inspired to try to find out more about the long-serving Private Frederick “Chuck” Sheffield, of the Queen’s Royal Surrey Regiment, who was a well-known character around Guildford and particularly Stoughton.

Pte Frederick ‘Chuck’ Sheffield, taken from a Pathe newsreel about him. Note the long service stripes on his tunic. Click to enlarge in a new window.

Chuck served for 43 years as a soldier with the Queen’s, from 1908 to 1951, and a further eight years as an army civilian general duty man before finally retiring for good in 1959, aged 70.

His retirement from the army in 1951 was even reported in the Egyptian Times!

During his time in the army, Chuck served in Gibraltar, Bermuda, South Africa, Palestine, the Sudan and the North West Frontier of India. He was one of the British Expeditionary Force to France in the First World War, where he was wounded in action.

He was stationed at Stoughton Barracks, the Queen’s Regimental depot during the Second World War, as by then he was 50 years old and perhaps a little old for front line active service (although I suspect he felt otherwise at the time!).

Chuck died at St Luke’s Hospital in Guildford in 1964, aged 74. He was well regarded in the Queen’s and his funeral service at Emmanuel Church, Stoughton, was well attended by family and friends along with senior officers from his regiment.

Chuck was a committed member of the British Legion and the Old Contemptibles Association, who provided a colour party with the association standard, which was lowered in salute as Last Post and Reveille were played by a bugler from the Queen’s Regiment.

Sadly, despite lengthy enquiries, I have not been able to locate Chuck’s grave so far in any of the local church graveyards and Guildford Borough Council has no record of him, either cremated or buried in any of its cemeteries.

Chuck had four sisters and three brothers, all sadly now passed on, but they may well have had children who would be Chuck’s nephews and nieces and may still be living in or around Guildford.

So, if you are a Sheffield, a Gray or a Pullinger, you might be related to him.

You can see Chuck in this 1951 British Pathé news clip.

Did you know Chuck or are you related to him? Do you know where he’s buried? I would be grateful for any information or help in locating his final resting place.

Please let me know by email at

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Responses to Letter: Anyone Out There Related To Stoughton Barracks Soldier ‘Chuck’ Sheffield?

  1. Dave Middleton Reply

    January 3, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    First of all, may I thank The Guildford Dragon for publishing my request for information about Chuck.

    I’m pleased to say that I’ve had a few responses from nieces and great nephews of Chuck and I’ve been able to pass on to them some information about him.

    I’ve also heard from the daughter of the former officer’s mess head chef, who remembered Chuck well.

    I’ve located Chuck’s parents’ grave over at Ash Cemetery, along with the house that they retired to at Ash Green.

    Sadly, finding Chuck’s own final resting place still escapes me (GBC are adamant that he’s not at Stoke New Cemetery), but I’ll keep on trying.

  2. John Lomas Reply

    January 3, 2017 at 10:49 pm

    Having lived in Ash Green, on Hazel Road, I was interested enough to look for the name “Sheffield” in the 1939 register.

    There is a Mr and Mrs Sheffield there at that time, aged 28 and 25 respectively.

    What a fascinating address “Brown Roof”, Green Lane. Nowadays, of course, Green Lane is in two parts: Ash Green Lane West and Ash Green Lane East.

    • Dave Middleton Reply

      January 4, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      I would like to thank John Lomas for his response, I hadn’t found that house name in my research so far. If he finds anything else, I would be grateful if he would let me know either on here, or via email at

      “Brown Roof” was the home of William Sheffield and his wife Nellie in 1939. William was Chuck’s youngest brother and of course, Nellie was Chuck’s sister-in-law.

      There’s no listing for a “Brown Roof” on the “Surrey Interactive Map” on either of the Green Lanes nowadays, but it’s not uncommon for houses to change names over the years as the occupants change. I shall do some digging to see if I can locate the house and what it’s called nowadays.

      Also, back in 1939 and just round the corner from Hazel Road, Chuck’s father, John Sheffield, lived at a house called “Tilehurst” on White Lane, which I’ve located (renamed since then), along with Chuck’s sister Dorothy and Chuck’s younger brothers, Herbert.

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