1. Memorial:Tunbridge Wells CemeteryB. 3. 273.
2. Book:The (1921) Masonic Roll of Honour 1914-1918Pg.132
3. Memorial:The (1933) Scroll - Roll of Honour52B GQS

Awards & Titles:


Family :

A member of the family of great gunsmiths, he was the grandson of James Purdey who founded the company in 1814. Sefton was born in 1877, one of the six sons of James Purdey (Jr) who probably lived in Bayswater, West London. James was an astute man and knowing that he already had too many sons to be involved in the business, may have designated the army as a career for his new son by christening him ‘Major’. It is, perhaps, as a result of the confusion which must have followed him all his life, he is shown on the Roll of Honour as ‘M Sefton Purdey.’

In the autumn of 1904 he was married at St George’s, Hanover Square to Julia Haverson and set up home in Braishfield near Romsey in Hampshire. He was a member of the Royal Thames Yacht Club.

Education & Career :

Purdey went to Cheltenham College between April 1887 and December 1893.

Military :


Unit :Army Remount Service 
Attached : 
Action :France & Flanders 

From Cheltenham he went straight to the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. He was thence commissioned into the 18th Hussars on 18th May 1898. As a 2nd lieutenant, Purdey served in the South African War in 1899-1902 and took part in the operations in Natal in 1899 with engagements at Rietfontein and Lombard’s Kop. These actions were followed by the defence of Ladysmith including a noted sortie on 7th December 1899. He was promoted to lieutenant on 3 October 1900. From May to September 1901 he served in Transvaal. In November 1901 the Orange River Colony March took place followed by further action on the Zululand Frontier of Natal and by May 1902 he had been awarded the Natal Medal with two clasps and King’s Medal with two clasps.

In 1907 Purdey retired from the 18th Hussars and probably lived the life of an English gentleman for the next seven years, spending a considerable amount of his time shooting and fishing as suggested by a Spy cartoon of him, published in Vanity Fair.

On the outbreak of the Great War, he could not remain idle and being over age for command soldiering, he joined the Remount Service and was gazetted captain and promoted from adjutant to be an assistant commandant in the rank of temporary major.

Originally it was the responsibility of individual mounted regiments to procure their own horses and mules but this had, in times of war, proved to be too much of a burden and in 1877 the Army Remount Service was formed to provide a general procurement resource.

Many of the Remount officers were drawn from the landed gentry, masters of fox hounds, retired cavalry officers and others who had experience with horses in civilian life, thus avoiding withdrawing army officers from the line.

Detail :

He was posted to one of the Advanced Remount Depots in France where he contracted Bright’s disease which lead to renal failure and his repatriation. He died on 25 May 1916

France & Flanders covers all the dates and corresponding locations which are outside the official battle nomenclature dates on the Western Front. Therefore the actions in which these men died could be considered 'normal' trench duty - the daily attrition losses which were an everyday fact of duty on the Western Front.

Masonic :

TypeLodge Name and No.Province/District :
Mother : Old Cheltonian No. 3223 E.C.London

1st February 1910
1st November 1910
7th November 1911

Purdey was initiated in his Old School Lodge, the Old Cheltonian Lodge No 3223. He was proposed by Bro C.O.Purdey and seconded by Bro D.C.Lee. Initiated 1st February 1910. Passed 1st November 1910. Raised 7th November 1911.

He was also in the Royal Arch.

Source :

The project globally acknowledges the following as sources of information for research across the whole database:

Additional Source:

Last Updated: 2019-08-14 18:29:31