The Proctor family were admitted to the workhouse on 6 Nov. 1918 as a result of their father Sapper John Proctor 282551 R.E. APO BEF France, being a prisoner of war, his family residing at 60 Spring Gardens, Doncaster his wife Mabel b. 1885 gave birth on that day (6 Nov 1918) to Thomas Charles who sadly died the day after on the 7th , followed by Mabel on the 9 Nov. 1918. The other children Josephine b. 1912, Edna b. 1914 and Leslie b. 1916 were discharged to children’s homes. Their nearest relative being Grandmother Mrs Lockwood of Hawthorne House, Arskey Lane, Bentley.
The story behind the story – John Proctor was a bricklayer’s labourer living at 59 Mill Road, Cleethorpes. John joined up on 11 December, 1915 into the Lincolnshire Regmt. being transferred to the 25th Durham Light Infantry on 11 September, 1916. On 2 November, 1916 he was transferred again to the South Staffs. Regmt and finally on 22 May, 1917 John was transferred to the Royal Engineers. There is no record that John was ever a P.O.W. and infact he spent most of the war in hospital being treated for V.D. six times over a period from 1917 to 1919.
John’s ‘wife’ Edith Mabel Boothby was born in 1884 to Charles and Sophia Boothby of White Cross Street, Barton-upon-Humber. In 1891 aged 6 Mabel was living with her sisters and brother in Caister, Lincs., no parents were recorded on the census.
John and Mabel’s children Josephine b. 1912 in Crosby, Edna b. 1914 in Grimsby and Lesley b. 1916 in Doncaster (all illegitimate).
John states he married Mabel on 8 August, 1918 in Doncaster and in his service record it is noted he went AOL on 19 until 22 August, 1918!
John was demobbed on 26 November, 1919 giving his home address as Hawthorne House, Bentley. It is not known if he was reunited with his children.