VAD Nurse Clare Howard

Learn more about Clare Howard a member of Kent 18 (Orpington) Voluntary Aid Detachment

Project volunteer Lorraine Courtenay

Clare (sometimes Clara) Cecily Howard was born on 26th December 1892 in Orpington and was 20 when war broke out.

Before the war

In the 1911 census Clare is recorded as living with her father, a barrister, along with five older sisters and one older brother. The family lived at Bark Hart in Orpington.

During the First World War

During the First World War Clare was a member of Kent 108 (Orpington) VAD and worked as a nurse. Her elder sister Amy was also a VAD volunteer.


In 1915, Clare married a soldier, Charles Reginald Chenevix-Trench (known as Reggie). Some of Reggie’s correspondence to Clare whilst he served in the trenches and she served with the VAD has been published in a book “Life, Death and Growing up on the Western Front” available to borrow from Bromley Libraries.

Reggie, who served as a major in the 5th battalion of the Sherwood Foresters, was killed in action on 21st March 1918.

After the First World War

Clare passed away aged 97 in December 1989.

This page was added by Ian Grant on 04/09/2015.

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