Frederick Hobbs

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Frederick Hobbs
Hobbs Frederick.jpg
Personal Information
Date of Birth 24 Apr 1894
Place of Birth Bideford, Devonshire, England
Death 1963
Place of Death York, Western Australia
Age at Enlistment 20 years, 11 months
Description 5'4½" (1.64m) tall ; 135lbs
61.235 kg
; dark complexion ; blue eyes ; dark hair
Occupation Farm hand
Religion Presbyterian
Address 'Mill Lane Farm', Beenup, Western Australia
Next of Kin Father , Mr Thomas Heard Hobbs
Military Information
Reg Number R452
Date of Enlistment 8 Mar 1915
Rank Lance Corporal
Unit/Formation 28th Battalion, C Company, 2nd tour was with 16th Reinforcements / 7th Brigade, 2nd Division
Date of Embarkation 9 Jun 1915 ‒ 30 Jun 1915
Ship Embarked On HMAT A11 Ascanius Fremantle to Alexandria
Date of Embarkation 10 Oct 1916 ‒ 3 Dec 1916
Ship Embarked On HMAT A23 Suffolk Fremantle to Plymouth
Date of Return 3 Jan 1916 ‒ 5 Feb 1916
Ship Returned On HMAT A38 Ulysses Port Suez to Fremantle
Date of Return 22 Dec 1918 ‒ 5 Feb 1919
Ship Returned On HMAT A41 Bakara
Fate Returned to Australia (medical)
Wounded in Action 3 May 1917 at 2nd Bullecourt
Wounded in Action 11 Aug 1918 at Lihons
Returned to Australia
Monument Armadale War Memorial (Beenup panel)
Armadale and Districts Roll of Honour
Medals 1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal

Pre War

War Service

Following six weeks general training with the 11th Depot Company, Fred was allocated to 'C' Company of the 28th Battalion that was being raised in Western Australia at that time. Completing his Australian training, he travelled with them to Egypt aboard HMAT A11 Ascanius departing from Fremantle on 9 Jun 1915, and arriving off Suez on the 30th before disembarking on the morning of 2 Jul 1915. In addition to training they also spent a month on Garrison duty at the 'Citadel'. On 3 Sep 1915 the battalion entrained for Alexandria where they boarded the HMT Ivernia for Mudros harbour on Lemnos Island. Although they arrived on 4 Sep 1915, it was not until 10 Sep 1915 when they transshipped to the HMS Sarnia which carried them to the Gallipoli Peninsula 100 kilometers away.

On 22 Oct 1915 Fred was seen by the 7th Field Ambulance and hospitalised with influenza. Evacuated through the Casualty Clearing Station aboard HMHS Glenart Castle to Alexandria in Egypt where he arrived on 30 Oct 1915, he was admitted to the 21st General Hospital, having also contracted severe dysentery by then. Treated in Alexandria for enteric fever, he was sent home to Australia on 3 Jan 1916 aboard the HMAT A38 Ulysses from Suez for six months to recover and regain strength.

Frederick returned to duty less than 3 months later on 14 Apr 1916 at the 5th Military District. He boarded HMAT A23 Suffolk on 10 Oct 1916 as a member of the 16th reinforcement draft for the 28th Battalion, which then travelled to England, arriving at Plymouth on 2 Dec 1916. Following training with the 7th Training Battalion at Rollestone he travelled to France from Folkestone on 21 Dec 1916 via the HMT Princesse Clementine. Before joining the battalion he spent some time in final trench warfare training at the 2nd Division Base Depot in Étaples. He was subsequently able to rejoin the 28th Battalion in France on 14 Mar 1917 near Bapaume, where he was slotted back into 'C' Company. On 3 May 1917 at what was to become known as Second Bullecourt, he received wounds to his hand and leg. Following initial treatment from 5th Field Ambulance and the 3rd Australian Casualty Clearing Station on 4 & 5 May 1917, he was admitted to the 11th Stationary Hospital in Rouen. On 16 May 1917 Thomas was embarked aboard HMHS St David for England and on his arrival he was admitted to the Lewisham Military Hospital on 17 May 1917.

Following treatment at Lewisham, he was released on 20 Aug 1917 to the 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital before leaving there on 29 Sep 1917 to spend time with the Overseas Training Brigade. On 20 Oct 1917 he returned to France through Southampton to rejoin the 28th Battalion on 28 Oct 1917 in the front line at Broodseinde.

On 12 Apr 1918, Fred was charged with, contrary to orders, 'going out with the intention of shooting game'. For this sin he was awarded seven days Field Punishment No.2 (see notes). He was appointed Lance Corporal on 19 Jun 1918, and soon after in his battalion's attack on Lihons Hill on 11 Aug 1918, Fred was again wounded in action, this time with severe wounds to his left thigh and chest. He was treated in turn by the 5th Field Ambulance and then the 53rd Casualty Clearing Station on 11 Aug 1918, before being admitted to the 6th General Hospital at Rouen. On 16 Aug 1918 he was stable enough to be invalided to the UK aboard HMHS Essequibo for further treatment at the 5th Southern General Hospital in Portsmouth. Released to the 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital on 30 Sep 1918, he was granted furlough from 4 - 18 Oct 1918, and in December he was shipped back to Australia aboard HMAT A41 Bakara, departing on 22 Dec 1918, and disembarking in Fremantle on 5 Feb 1919. Fred was discharged by the 5th Military District on 1 Apr 1919.

"...was seven weeks in Gallipoli, when he fell ill of enteric; was invalided to Australia, and returned to the front in October, 1916."[1]

Post War

1935 married Mabel Doreen Potts in Beverley. After Frederick's death Mabel moved to son Desmond Bruce's property "Crathorne" at Kojonup where she remained until her death in the 1980s. One of 3 brothers all of whom served in the 28th Battalion. On 27 Nov 1951 his farm was affected by a fire requiring assistance from neighbours and friends. One brother ,Sergeant Richard Charles Hobbs (Beverley farm hand), married while in England and did not return to Australia, and the other brother John Hobbs was Killed in Action at Bianches Wood on 11 Aug 1918. Hobbs drive in Armadale is named after the three brothers.

Electoral Roll entries - 1925 - 1928 a farm hand at Dale, via Beverley; 1936 - 1962 a farmer at Morbinning, Beverley.


Field punishment could be awarded by a court martial or a commanding officer for any offence committed on active service. There were two categories of field punishment. Field punishment No. 2 consisted of heavy labouring duties, and several hours a day shackled . All offenders awarded field punishment would march with their unit, carry their arms and accoutrements, perform all their military duties as well as extra fatigue duties, and be treated as defaulters

  1. "The Drill of the Foot-Hills" (PDF) (1917). Western Australia. Mar 1917. p. 14. Retrieved 16 May 2017 – via State Library of Western Australia. 

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