Dudley Warnford Chippindall
Serial No. 9844
9th Field Company Engineers
Dudley Warnford Chippindall - Information
When the war began, Dudley was living on Gardiners Rd in Mascot, while working as a labourer, having completed a three and a half year apprenticeship with the Ref & Smelting Company of Australia. Dudley had a wife, Violet, and child, who were residing at Loloma on Owen St, Grey Lynn in Auckland, New Zealand. As the war dragged on, Dudley decided to enlist in the AIF. At 30 years of age, he sent an application form to Victoria Barracks on the 28th of March 1916. He then reported to Rosebery Park Camp. Here, he was allocated to the 9th Field Company Engineers as a Sapper. He then boarded the HMAT Ajana in Sydney on the 5th of July 1916.
He landed in Plymouth Harbour in late August, for further instruction. He was then transported to France, leaving Southampton on the 23rd of November. Shortly after arriving in France during the bitter winter cold, he reported sick, taken to the 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Station. At the end of January 1917, he was invalided to England from the 13th General Hospital in Boulogne with pneumonia. He recovered from the infection, and was subsequently transported back to the war in France. Dudley worked non-stop to help his fellow soldiers. Completing construction, repair and maintenance work in and out of the lines, he was exposed to enemy fire. On the 3rd of May, he was appointed Acting Lance Corporal. He was then wounded in action, caught in an artillery blast on the 11th of October 1917. Taken to the Casualty Clearing Station, the shrapnel cuts to his legs were bandaged up and he was rushed back to the lines. Towards the end of 1917, Dudley’s mother Alice, who had lived at Dapto, relocated to New Zealand. She moved in with Dudley’s wife in Auckland.
Dudley continued to work hard on the Western Front. On the 8th of April 1918, Dudley was recommended for a Military Medal for courage and devotion to duty whilst in charge of a work party. He was then appointed Temporary 2nd Corporal, and promoted 2nd Corporal a month later. Dudley continued to serve with his unit after the war ended. He was finally sent home, departing England on the 11th of May 1919. He was discharged from military service shortly after he returned, and was able to reunite with his wife and family.