Thomas Hart Brinkworth
Thomas Hart Brinkworth was baptised at St Mary's on 14 February 1892, the son of William James Hart Brinkworth, a waterman, and Patience Elizabeth née Williams. His birth was registered during the first quarter of the same year. The family lived at Hart's Cottages, The Street. Coming from a seafaring family, it is no surprise that Thomas was at sea at the age of 15 when he signed as a cook on the Albion of Poole under his older brothers, David (master) and Jabez (mate), on which he sailed to numerous British ports. Gaining experience, he later worked as an ordinary seaman, and by 1912 was working on ships not commanded by his brothers, and sailing as far as Chile. Thomas may have already emigrated by the start of the war, as on 8 July 1915 he enlisted into the Australian Army at Brisbane, perhaps an odd choice for a professional seaman. One of his next-of-kin was given as his brother Jabez, at Port Adelaide in South Australia.
After basic training Thomas embarked for Egypt where on 21 January 1916 he joined the 9th Battalion Royal Queensland Regiment at Tel-el-Kebir. Only five days later he suffered a septic hand and entered the first of a series of hospitals (Serapeum, Ismailia, Cairo and Heliopolis); however this did not affect his spirit as on 12 April he was in trouble for refusing to obey an order from an NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer).
Meanwhile, his battalion had been transferred to France. Thomas arrived on 9 May, but did not join them until 10 July on the Somme. Their first major action was the Battle of Pozières, a two week struggle to capture that village which started on 23 July. On that first day Thomas suffered a gunshot wound to his left hand which led to him being sent to hospital, first in Rouen and then to Bramshott in Hampshire. After discharge he was at several depots in England where he committed further offences: twice absent without leave and again disobeying orders, compounding that with obscene language and escaping from arrest. However, he seems to have turned a corner in late 1917 after training in bayonet instruction, as at Sutton Veny he was appointed temporary corporal. By March 1918 it must have become clear that he was not going to be fit for duty within six months and, passing through the ANZAC Camp at Weymouth, he embarked for Australia on 16 May, being discharged on 19 August owing to rheumatism. He was awarded the 1914/15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal, and his war service is remembered in Frampton with that of his nephew, Harold William Brinkworth, on the plaque in the village hall.
Thomas married Beatrice Annie Edwards Thomson on 1 November 1918 and they had five children: Thomas Jabez William, Betty, Jean (pictured in our Gallery with her father), Leslie Donald and Frederick. Thomas Hart Brinkworth died on 16 December 1949, and he and his wife are commemorated in Cheltenham Crematorium, Adelaide, South Australia.