The STEVENSON family – 2nd Lieutenant STEVENSON, Frederick Burton (1893-1953)

George Frederick Stevenson (1853-1913) married Mary Katherine Norah Susan Burton (1862-1928) at St Mary de Castro in 1883.  They had four children – Norah Evelyn Elizabeth (1884-1953); George Charles Burton (1885-1912), Frederick Burton (1893-1953) and William Burton (1896-1906).  They were all baptised at St Martin’s shortly after their births, Frederick Burton Stevenson on 30th January 1893.  The family lived at 73 Princess Street until after 1885 and by the time Frederick was born, at 118 Regent Road (Below, left).  In 1905 they moved a few doors down to number 132 Regent Road (Below, right), before moving out of Leicester to Quorn Lodge by 1911.

George Frederick Stevenson was a solicitor working for George Stevenson and Son (his father’s firm) at 11 New Street in the parish of St Martin.  George Frederick was sidesman at St Martin’s from 1886 to 1890, the Churchwarden until 1893 and Deputy Churchwarden until 1909.  He was also Honorary Secretary of Leicester Institution for the Blind and treasurer of the Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society, as well as being Mayor of Leicester 1869-1870.  Mary Katherine was in charge of a stall at the St Martin’s “Yellow Bazaar” in February 1899.

Youngest son William Burton died in 1906 aged ten.  Eldest son George Charles Burton had served as a 2nd lieutenant in the Leicestershire Regiment and then as a Lieutenant in Prince Albert’s Own Regiment in 1909, at the same time as studying law.  By 1912 he was a captain in the Leicestershire Yeomanry.  On 8th January 1912 he was suffering from a cold so decided to stay in bed.  Later that day he was later discovered by his sister Norah, shot through the head.  It was inconclusive who fired the fatal shot.  So when George Frederick Stevenson died after a long illness on 22nd October 1913 only Norah and Frederick were left to live with their mother.

Frederick studied at Cheltenham College, where he was a member of the Officers Training Corps. In he was a law student.  When war broke out he enlisted from his mother’s house, still Quorn Lodge, joining as a private in the Inns of Court Officers Training Corps.  He then had a BMI of 28 and Frederick would have been noticeably larger than most of his peers.  He was discharged after just 33 days for “unsatisfactory conduct”.  However he eventually gained a commission as 2nd Lieutenant in the 3rd Battalion Leicestershire Regiment on 26th August 1915 and entered France the following June.  He was captured and taken as a Prisoner Of War, reported missing on 27th May 1918 and not returning until the end of the year.  Frederick’s mother Mary Katherine maintained a link with St Martin’s during this time and contributed to the congregational tea in 1915.

In June 1919 Frederick departed for Bombay as a tea planter.  But this was not a success – by 1923 he was back in England where he married Winifred Minnie Jourdain Welch (1884-1971) in Sussex at the beginning of the year.  The following year they were living near Taunton in Devon.  Frederick died in Bristol on 20th July 1953 and Minnie in Hove, Sussex, in 1971.

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