April 8th, Robert signed up to the 4th Battalion
of the Suffolk Regiment. He was 18 years old. His
attestation papers record that he was five feet
four inches tall, his eyes were blue and his hair
was brown. He claimed to be a member of the
Church of England, although on 6th September 1906
his record was amended because he had become a
Robert extended his service, joining the 2nd
Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment, and becoming a
July 22nd, Robert married Frances Louisa
Baker at Norton, Suffolk. However, a few weeks
before this he had been accused of fathering the
child of Harriet Rose, probably the girl shown at
the age of 17 at Lawshall on the 1901 census.
When interviewed, Robert denied making any
agreements, and also denied being the father of
By February, Robert had relented, and agreed to start paying from next
pay day, at the rate of seven
shillings a week. However, in July the Relieving
Officer of the Sudbury Union workhouse wrote to Robert's superior officers demanding
that Robert make maintenance payments for the
child, including any arrears, reminding them that
Robert had admitted paternity and even signed an
agreement to pay.
1910: Robert was
discharged from the army in 1910 after eight
years service. He was living with his wife
Frances in Annesdale, Ely, for the birth of their
son Edwin Robert on 27th August. Edwin was
baptised in Holy Trinity parish at St Peter's
church on 21st September.
was twenty-six at the time of the 1911 census.
The Page family were living at The
Street, Norton, Suffolk, where they had
been married two years previously.
was employed as a swine herdsman.
His wife Frances was 23, their son Edwin 7 months
old. Robert and Edwin had been born in Ely,
Frances in Fornham All Saints, Suffolk. Edwin is
too young to be Robert's child with Harriet Rose,
but intriguingly Robert and Frances declared on
the census form that they'd had another child who
died. Meanwhile, at the same census, Harriet Rose
was working as a cook on a farm at Rougham, near
Bury St Edmunds. There was no child with her.
1914: On the
outbreak of war, Robert re-enlisted with the
Suffolk Reserve, and was shortly after
transferred to the Northamptonshire Regiment.
Robert was lightly wounded.
Robert was invalided out, his
discharge papers noting that he was fit to work.
After the War ended, Robert joined the
In March, Robert was finally discharged as
surplus to military requirements. He returned to
Long Melford in Suffolk to live with his wife and
children Edwin, Arthur, Herbert and Frank. In about
1920, a photograph was taken outside of Melford
Hall of all the local men who had fought in the
War and survived it, and it is likely that Robert
is in this photograph.
Robert died in Sudbury, Suffolk. he was 51 years