The Australian Boer War Memorial
Anzac Parade Canberra

Trooper (later Sergeant) Aubrey Lancaster

Ancestor Details

Ancestor's Name: Aubrey John Lancaster

Ancestor's date of birth: 02/10/1877

Ancestor's date of death: 17/06/1945

Cause of Death: Heart Failure

Service and Life Before the Boer War: Aubrey Lancaster was born in Williamstown, Victoria and before the war was a surveyor working for the Ballarat City Council.His parents had moved to Ballerat.

Service Number: 411

Colony or State of enlistment: VIC, Place of Enlistment: Melbourne

Unit: 'A' Squadron 4th Victorian Imperial Bushmen

Rank attained in Boer War: TPR, Date Effective: 01/05/1900

Highest Rank attained (if served after war): SGT, Date Effective: 26/09/1916

Murray Page: 269

Contingent: Fourth Victorian

Ship: SS Victorian, Date of Sailing: 01/05/1900

Memorial details: Melbourne General cemetery

Awards/Decorations/Commendations: Queen's South Africa Medal with Cape Colony, Transvaal, Rhodesia and South Africa 1901 clasps. 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.

Personal Characteristics: Height 176 cm.

Reasons to go and fight: Patriotic saw it as his duty

Details of service in war: Service from May 1900 in Rhodesia, west Transvaal and Cape Colony including relief of Philipstown (11 February 1901). He was wounded in the right knee at Hartebeestfontein 16 February 1901. The Victorians were part of a brigade operation to seize Hartebeestfontein and some Boer Convoys, the other units being the 5th and 10th Imperial Yeomanry, a squadron of 3rd Yeomanry, two companies of the Loyal North Lancashires and a composite group of Bushmen including 'D' Squadron NSWIB (Methuen's bodyguard) SAIB, 2 TIB and A Sqadron 4 VIB. There were estimated to be between 1500-2000 Boers. The action was described as follows by an eye witness.

"The enemy swept our front with such a fire that to advance another yard was impossible, and we had to lie under fire, patiently waiting for some chang in the fight to give us a chance of a rush. Meanwhile we were losing men. ...Trooper A J Lancaster had been wounded."

The wound was so bad that he was evacuated to England for further treatment at the Queen Victoria Hospital, Netley. He returned to Australia on the SS Orizaba arriving 14 August 1901. He was discharged 27 October 1901.

Service and life after the Boer War: On return from the war he went to Wellington, New Zealand to work and there married his wife Ethel Elizabeth Sarah Windram 1/4/1904. When World War 1 broke out he enlisted in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force as No 15117 Sgt attached to NZEF Headquarters. He was badly wounded with a gunshot wound to the right knee while at Gallipoli and discharged medically unfit 31/5/1916 having served 1 year 226 days. He returned to Australia and lived in East Ballarat. He was a a municipal clerk and foreman. On 27/6/1916 he enlisted in the AIF in the 4th Reinforcements of the 39th battalion and was appointed Sergeant.(no 48190) He was discharged again medically unfit 11/12/1916 due to the wounds to his right knee. He died in Royal Park, Melbourne.

Descendant Details

Name of Descendant: Patricia Joan Parker, Hillston NSW
Relationship to Ancestor: Grand Daughter

Name of Descendant: Ronald Charles Lancaster, Wagga Wagga NSW
Relationship to Ancestor: Grandson


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RUSI of NSW Boer War Battlefields