Charles was born in County Sligo, Ireland in 1886, the son of Charles William Wood and his wife Phoebe Jane. In 1911 when he was 24 he was living in Kensington, London, and working as a Ledger Clerk at John Barker & Son, a large department store. He volunteered for the Territorial Force, City of London Yeomanry (Rough Riders) on 20 November 1915 giving his address as 4 Kensington Square.
Charles remained in this country, serving briefly with the Lincolnshire Yeomanry and then with the Royal Horse Guards from 30 May 1917. In May 1918 he was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps and sent overseas to France. He returned to this country in March 1919 and was demobilised a month later. At this point he gave his address as Ard-na-Greena, Spratton, a house in Station Road (now Brixworth Road). His father also lived in Ard-na-Greena, named after a small village in Ireland. Charles was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
After the war Charles ran a popular taxi service in Spratton and died in 1953 aged 67. He is buried in the old parish cemetery with his mother and father and his two sisters Phoebe Ethel and Lillian Mary. These two Irish ladies were remembered in the village for their large hats and their dominant singing voices in church. The choir boys also appreciated their Christmas treat of a trip to the cinema in Northampton and then being taken out to tea by the two ladies.*
* See ‘Memories of Old Spratton’ by Enid Jarvis and Michael Heaton, published by Spratton Local History Society 2007 price £8 plus £2.50 postage and packing
The inside of the bakery in Manor Road, which closed in 1951. Shown in the photograph is Bert Wykes, who started work in the bakery in 1927, when the baker was Thomas Harris. In those days, people who had no oven at home used to bring their Sunday dinners to the bakery to be heated up. Despite tins being clearly marked, there were often mistakes (or not?) upon collection with children taking a slice out of someone else's dinner before realising the mistake! The charge for heating a roast and Yorkshire pudding was 2d., a turkey cost 6d., and a cockerel 4d.