Lieut.-Colonel Edward Langley BOWRING, D.S.O., O.B.E.

Commanded the 2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment from January 1915 to February 1915.

Edward Langley Bowring was born at St. Alkmunds, Derby, on the 11th September 1882, the son of Charles Clement Bowring (Wine Merchant and J.P.) and Violet Camilla Bowring (nee Ball).

He was commissioned in to a Militia Infantry Battalion, the 3rd Battalion The Sherwood Foresters (Derbyshire Regiment) formerly the 1st and 2nd Derby Militia, on the 8th January 1900 as a 2nd Lieutenant. On the 4th December 1900 this Militia Battalion was Disembodied and he transferred to the Regular Army and joined the Worcestershire Regiment.

On the 5th January 1901 he was given a regular commission with the 1st Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and joined them in South Africa shortly after.

He was involved in operations in the Orange River Colony from August 1901 to 31st May 1902 and was awarded the Queen's Medal with 5 clasps.

During 1901 he was promoted to Lieutenant on the 21st December 1901.

On his promotion to Captain on augmentation 1st October 1908, he transferred to the 2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and joined them at Jhansi, India.

On the 5th March 1913, the 2nd Battalion Worcestershire returned home landing at Southampton. The Battalion settled down to hard work at Aldershot in the 5th Brigade as part of the 2nd Division.

He went out to France with the 2nd Battalion ('C' Company) in August 1914 and took part in the historic counter-attack at Gheluvelt, for which he was awarded the D.S.O. (London Gazette 18/02/1915). He received his D.S.O. from King George V at Buckingham Palace in 1915.

On the 6th January 1915 the new Commanding Officer of the 2nd Battalion, Major G. W. St. G. Grogan, was severely wounded and the command of the Battalion devolved on Captain Edward Langley Bowring on a temporary basis. On the 4th February 1915 Major (afterwards Lieut.-Colonel) G. C. Lambton, D.S.O. arrived and took over command.

Major Edward Langley Bowring

Major Edward Langley Bowring

He was seconded to a Brigade H.Q. Unit as Assistant Provost-Marshal (Staff Officer) on the 24th June 1915, part of 51st Division B.E.F (British Expeditionary Force). On the 29th November 1916 he was graded as D.A.A.G. (Deputy Assistant Adjutant General) with the rank of Major whilst still serving as Assistant Provost-Marshal. At the end of the war he was Deputy Provost-Marshal B.A.O.R. (British Army On the Rhine).

He married Laura Fraser Biscoe in 1915 at Chelsea, London. The sister of Lieut. Frederick Fraser Biscoe a fellow officer also of 'C' Company, 2nd Battalion who later died of wounds in an action on 19th May 1915.

During WW1 he was mentioned-in-despatches twice (London Gazette 17/02/1915) and (London Gazette 04/01/1917). Also awarded the O.B.E (London Gazette 03/06/1919).

On the 17th February 1923 promoted to rank of Major and moved from the Worcestershire Regiment to the Sherwood Foresters (Derbyshire Regiment).

Retired on half-pay to the Reserve of Offices List on the 17th March 1926. He finally retired from the army and Reserve of Officers on the 11th September 1923, and granted the rank of Lieut.-Colonel.

Below left is a photo (c. 1909) of Edward Langley Bowring as a Captain wearing his South Africa, Queen's Medal with 5 clasps.

The family home was "Greystones", The Cresent, Felpham, Sussex.

During the Second World War his son Lieut. Ronald Langley Bowring was killed (age 21) in action at Anzio, Italy, an officer of the King's Royal Rifle Corps attached to the 9th Battalion Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment).


Captain Edward Langley Bowring

Lieut.-Colonel Edward Langley Bowring, D.S.O., O.B.E., died on the 21st June 1956 (age 73) at The Bognor Regis War Memorial Hospital, Bognor Regis, Sussex. His funeral was held at Felpham, Bognor Regis, Sussex on the 25th June 1956 and Brigadier H. U. Richards, C.B.E., D.S.O. represented the Worcestershire Regiment at the funeral.

Lieutenant Edward Langley Bowring (1901) just before he sailed for South Africa.

(Photos kindly provided by his grandson Paul London of Bethedsa, Maryland, USA)