College – Issue 39

Hugh Carrington Hugh, the youngest of the three brothers to start at Christ’s College in 1903, quickly established himself as yet another winner of Divinity, Latin and History prizes, and then followed Christopher to Duntroon. His personnel records indicate that he was in the Wellington Infantry Battalion when he was slightly wounded at Quinns Post, but it was rather more serious. In fact he had received five wounds from a Turkish bomb. He was first admitted to St Andrew’s Hospital on Malta and then Endsleigh Palace Hospital for Officers in London and ultimately to Grey Towers at Hornchurch. It was not until March 1916 that he rejoined the Wellington Infantry Battalion in Ismalia. Further time in hospitals is indicated by his service history, but with little specific information until 8 September 1918 when he was wounded again. This time he was briefly at the 59th Casualty Clearing Station, and then to the 20th General Hospital at Camiers in France. It was “for distinguished and gallant service and devotion to duty during the period 28 February to the night of 16/17 September” that Hugh was mentioned in Despatches by Sir Douglas Haig, and he was subsequently awarded the Belgian Croix de Guerre by the King of Belgium. xix

He became a freelance journalist in London, but World War II intervened and he was appointed Brigade Major on the 182nd (Birmingham) Light Infantry of the 61st Division and ended the war with the rank of Lieutenant– Colonel. He returned to journalism, and was undertaking research at the British Museum at the time of his death. He was the author of a book on the life of Captain Cook, but it is for the Carrington Text that he has become recently known in New Zealand. Published in 2008 as Nga¯ i Tahu A Migration History xxi it draws on oral tradition to tell the story of tribal migration and the colonisation of New Zealand following the oceanic voyages that brought Polynesians to New Zealand. Charles Edmund Carrington (Charley) Charles Edmund, like his brothers before him excelled at Divinity, but he also added Tancred Prizes for Literature and History to his curriculum vitae. In addition to the Sons of Clergy Scholarship which the whole family was entitled to, by 1908 he had added a Junior Somes Scholarship, which decreased the financial burden on the family. In 1913 he was a Librarian, and played Malvolio in a production of Twelfth Night . In 1914 he left school and returned to England, and first writing under the pen name Charles Edmonds and then under his own name he told his story of World War I. He enlisted under age, trained with the Birmingham Battalion, and then managed to get himself a commission in the York and Lancasters. Yet when the Battalion left for France, he was left behind, still under age. He was transferred to the 23rd Reserve Battalion, then back to Birmingham and the reserve unit of the Royal Warwickshires. xxii On Christmas Day 1914, just before his 19th birthday he was in the trenches facing Gommecourt Wood.

Charles Edmund Carrington, extracted from Flower’s Album. CCPAL30/2, Christ’s College Archives

Soldier From the War Returning details Charles’ ongoing growth as a soldier and a sense of frustration about the lack of communication from those who made decisions. His increasing responsibilities are tempered with comments about his time on leave, military discipline and tactics. He rose to the rank of Captain and was awarded the Military Cross.

Hugh Carrington. Photograph sourced from Cenotaph xx

College Issue 39 2020


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