Rank, service number and regiment
Sergeant 870, 52nd Battalion, Australian Infantry (AIF)
31 August 1914, Blackboy Hill, Western Australia
Crate Cottage, next door to the Wyndham Arms, K.E. After
emigration, Baandee, Western Australia.
Date of death
4 September 1916
Age of death
Circumstances of death
The 52nd Battalion AIF were engaged in action around Moucquet Farm on the Somme. Gilbert’s Australian Army record includes an eye witness account. This records that Gilbert was seriously injured in the stomach on 4 September but due to the ferocity of the fighting he was subsequently recorded as missing and then declared killed in action. His body was never recovered. Gilbert died on the Somme, alongside eight of his friends and neighbours from his birthplace of Kingsbury Episcopi.
He is commemorated on the Villers Bretonneux Memorial, Somme, France where Australians who fell at the battle of the Somme with no known grave are commemorated. His name is also inscribed on panel 156 in the Commemorative Area at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra.
Date of birth & full name
1889 Kingsbury Episcopi. GILBERT TALBOT. He was known as BERT to friends and family.
Farmer as on his army record
Gilbert Talbot and Sarah Ann Talbot (nee Tribley). They married in 1885 and lived next door to the Wyndham Arms in Crate Cottage.
Spouse & children
Gilbert was unmarried
1914/15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.
According to his Australian service record Gilbert was 5’ 9 ¾ ” tall, weighed 157lbs, chest measurement 35”-37”, fair complexion, hazel eyes and light brown hair. He had a scar on his right upper arm.
Gilbert emigrated to Freemantle, Australia on 11 January 1907 on the ship Orotova, with brother Watson and cousin William Trebley. He was living initially in Perth and then moved east to Baandee.
Blackboy Hill training camp was the birthplace of Western Australia’s Anzac forces. The first volunteers arrived at the camp on August 17th 1914. Gilbert Talbot enlisted there on 31 August 1914 – so he was amongst the first volunteers to enlist there. Over 32,000 men passed through the camp before heading off for war. A Post Office had opened at the camp by 29th August, and a more permanent camp with huts and cook houses was built. The initial training here was mainly limited to marching, drilling, musketry practice and other basic military tasks. It was used right up until the end of the war, as the high death tolls on the battlefields of the Western Front meant that battalions were continually in need of reinforcements.
The photo below shows a view of Blackboy Hill on ANZAC Day, 25th April. ANZAC Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.