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John Clifford Webb, 2nd Lieutenant, Leicestershire Regiment

John Clifford Webb came up to Cambridge from Brighton College in 1912.

Born: Hurstpierpoint, Sussex on 27 February 1895

Fell in action: 14 September 1916

1912 was an eventful year at Jesus as Henry Arthur Morgan, the Master for 27 years, died and Arthur Gray was elected in October 1912. The end of one long era and as it turned out the beginning of another as Gray would go on to be Master for 28 years.

There is little information on Webb in the College archives but his obituary in the Jesus College Society Annual Report, 1917 says that “he had a decided gift for modern languages.” The College exam book does seem to show that he was progressing having taken at least two special papers in Modern Languages in June 1914. He was awarded a Military Special for service in July 1915 and therefore granted a BA.

The obituary also claims that Webb took part in games, particularly hockey, but “he never aimed at ‘colours’”.

He enlisted in the University and Public Schools Corps at the outbreak of war before gaining his commission in 1915. He went to the front in May 1916. Upon his death his Colonel wrote “We have lost a brother officer whom we cannot replace.” (Jesus College Society Annual Report, pp39-40).

You can email us on ww1-project@jesus.cam.ac.uk, go to our First World War homepage, or find us on Lives of the First World War.

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