Private Henry Tingcombe
18th Battalion, AIF
Service Number: 3678
Born: 1893, Tamworth, NSW
Died: 29 July 1916, Boulogne, France
Henry (Tinks) Lethbridge Tingcombe was born in Tamworth in 1893, the son of John and Ada Tingcombe. He was the grandson of the late Reverend Henry Tingcombe, first Church of England Minister of Armidale. Tingcombe was educated at the Burwood Superior Public School.
After leaving school, he joined the Adelaide Steamship Company and, at the outbreak of war, was a purser on the Grantala, which was later converted to a hospital ship. Tingcombe sailed to Rabaul on the Grantala with three nursing staff from the Penrith region: Sisters Stella Colless, Rachel Clouston and Constance Neale.
After being rejected in Sydney and Brisbane on medical grounds owing to the strict rules regarding teeth, Tingcombe finally enlisted with his younger brother Noel on 1 November 1915. Their mother, who was living at Studley Park, Werrington at the time of their enlistment later stated the older brother was allowed to be Noel’s guarantor. The brothers both joined the 18th Battalion on the same day and fought side by side. They left Australia on 20 December 1915 on board HMAT Aeneas and spent time in Egypt before being sent to the Western Front.
On 25 July 1916, Tingcombe, who was in a communication sap, was wounded in the chest during the Battle of Pozieres. Private James Frost Priestley, a schoolmate of Tingcombe’s, saw him walking away aided by two other men. Tingcombe was admitted to the 13th General Hospital at Boulogne on 28 July and died the following day. His brother Noel, was killed a few days later on 4 August 1916.
- Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, France
- Honor Roll, Victoria Park, St Marys
- National Archives of Australia: B2455, TINGCOMBE HENRY LETHBRIDGE
- Australian Red Cross Society Wounded and Missing
- Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour’
- Penrith City Library Biography files
Nepean Times 26 August 1916, p4, Col. 3
Nepean Times 9 September 1916, p1, Col. 3