Single, Frederick Alexander

He was the son of Frederick and Isabel Single of Wimbledon and came to Winchester from Mr. A.S. Wilkinson’s school at Eastbourne. He went up to Exeter College, Oxford, in 1906 and passed into the Army in 1908 joining the 2nd Dragoon Guards the following year.

He joined his regiment in Belgium on 30th September when they were ordered to move to a secret location, eventually reaching Bethune on 11th October. He served with conspicuous gallantry in the First and Second Battles of Ypres. In September 1916 he was awarded the M.C. for rallying a party, not under his command, after the failure of an attack: on this occasion he was wounded. In November 1917 at the Battle of Cambrai he led the leading squadron of his brigade through the German lines to within three miles of Cambrai and undertook the reconnaissance of the village of Noyelles dismounted and alone. In March 1918 he was on short leave in the south of France. Hearing of the great enemy offensive he immediately hurried back and took over the command of his squadron. He joined the scratch brigade formed by Brigadier General G.G. S. Carey (Coll., 1879-1883) to block the ten mile gap laid open to Amiens by the retirement of the Fifth Army. Captain Single was by now in command of several units of infantry as well as his own squadron: and behind them were no reserves. At mid-day on the 30th the Germans launched a┬áviolent attack against the section of this improvised line held by Captain Single’s detachment. At that point the enemy was driven back, but an adjoining unit broke and the whole position was endangered. Realising the responsibility resting upon him, he immediately sprang on to the parapet and out into the open and stood there rallying the men. He fell mortally wounded, but raising himself up on the parapet, continued to call to the men, urging them to stand fast. He died shortly afterwards. The line held for another forty-eight hours, by which time French divisions had arrived in support.

He married in 1915 Miss Dorothy Marsh.

War: World War 1

  • Surname: Single
  • Forenames or initials: Frederick Alexander
  • House: A
  • Years in School: 1901-1906
  • Rank: Captain
  • Regiment: 2nd Dragoon Guards
  • Date of Birth: 6th January 1888
  • Date of Death: 30th March 1918
  • How Died: Killed in Action
  • Location in War Cloister: Outer C1
  • Decoration: MC