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Frank Pollen

Local History

Page updated - 17 March 2009

Roll of Honour - Gt. Cornard


Gunner Frank Pollen


887404  12 (Honourable Artillery Company) Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery


Frank Pollen was born in Chelsworth around 1910 and was the son of George and Clara Pollen.  As a single man he used to cycle from Chelsworth to Great Cornard to court his future wife Jessie Doris Veasey.  Jessie’s mother had died in childbirth and she was brought up by an aunt and they lived in a cottage in Cats Lane, one of a row of cottages just along from the Maldon Grey pub.


Jessie and Frank were married at St. Andrew’s Church in 1934.  They and their two young children lived at 1 Bures Road, Great Cornard.  Frank was employed as a lorry driver at the Maltings in Long Melford.  He delivered the barrels to the local pubs.  His daughter Joyce remembers him as a ‘tall dark and handsome man’.


In September 1943 their young son Brian drowned in a tragic accident whilst fishing with two friends at the floodgates on the River Stour near Bakers Mill.  It would appear from newspaper reports that one of the young friends fell into the water and Brian tried to grab him and fell in himself.


Frank was wounded whilst serving with the Royal Artillery in Tunisia.  He was shot in the foot and the bullet came out by his ankle.  This resulted in him having to have his leg amputated.  His daughter remembers that he suffered a lot of pain afterwards.  Sometimes his leg was icy cold, sometimes extremely hot.  He tried different artificial legs but nothing seemed to help.  Her mother was forced to go out to work cleaning leaving Frank at home managing some of the household chores.  In 1947 the doctors decided that he should have an operation to amputate more of his leg.  Frank died during the operation at Roehampton Hospital.


Frank Pollen died aged 47 on 12th May 1947.  He lies buried in Sudbury Cemetery, Suffolk.


©Shirley Smith - Sudbury & District Royal British Legion - November 2008