1. Memorial:Loos Memorial Loos
2. Book:The (1921) Masonic Roll of Honour 1914-1918Pg.118
3. Memorial:The (1940) Scroll - WW1 Roll of Honour5D GQS

Awards & Titles:


Family :

The son of Cornelius Edward and Flora (nee BELLASIS) CARDEW of 50 Alma Vale Road, Clifton, Bristol.

Education & Career :

Cardew lived in Bordon, Hampshire

Service Life:


Unit / Ship / Est.: 7th Field Company 

Action : The Battle of Loos and associated actions 

"The Battle of Loos (25 September to 18 October 1915) was the major battle on the Western Front in 1915, surpassing in every respect all that had gone before in terms of numbers of men and materiel committed to battle. The preliminary bombardment was the most violent to date and the battle was charaterised by the committment of Regular and Territorial battalions on a large scale, in which the Territorials performed just as well as the Regulars. As the battles on the Western Front in 1915 increased in size and violence, so the casualties increased in proportion: Neuve Chapelle 12,000, Aubers Ridge/Festubert 29,000 , Loos 60,000. 1916 was to take the casualty cost to another level. Loos was intended as a minor role in support of French efforts around Arras but circumstances reduced the French effort. It marked the first use of poison gas by the British. Once the initial assualt had failed the battle continued in a series of actions mostly focused on the northern sector around the tactically important Hohenzollern Redoubt."

Cardew worked on the survey of Kashmir and Assam.

Sir Sidney Burrard (1860-1943) Surveyor-General of India from 1910-1919 ordered a re-survey of Kashmir (1909-13, led by J. Hunter and H.G. Bell) and Assam (1911-13, led by C.P. Gunter, E.B. Cardew, F.M. Bailey, H.T. Morshed, and O.H.B. Trenchard). During 1927-30 Kohistan (now in Pakistan) was surveyed by C.G. Lewis, and in 1935-38 Kumaun was re-surveyed by Gordon Osmaston.

Detail :

"Most Unfavourable Ground" by Cherry (P137-8) describes the attack on Hill 70 and specifically the attempts by the 10/Gordons to gain their objective.

The account says how the 73rd Field Co RE was attached to the Gordons. This makes complete sense as both were 15th Scottish Division. However the question is who was Captain Cardew?

There now ensued the bitter struggle for control of Hill 70. The Germans managed to reach the summit of the hill but were held up by fire from the Redoubt and the reverse slope positoions. The attack was also held up for a time by the 9/Black Watch from their positions either side of the Loos-Lens track near the Loos Crassier. Some of the hardest fighting was for the Hill 70 Redoubt and the 73rd Field Coy RE were prominent in this.

This company of engineers had been attached to the 44th Brigade with the intention of helping the infantry dig in and consolidate any postions gained. However the role of any soldier is to be an infantry soldier first and a specalist second, which is why the unit's war diary states 'The Company acted as infantry practically the whole time'.

The Company was divided into four sections, no's 1 and 2 sections had followed the Black Watch and the Seaforth Highlanders respectively into the attack.

No's 3 and 4 were behind the 10/Gordons waiting to follow them when it was their time to advance. While they were waiting for the Gordons to move No4 section was ordered to bridge a trench over the Loos Road but while this was being done one officer and ten men were wounded.

The officer wounded was the OC, Lt Nolan and a Captain Cardew assumed command of 3 section. He then ordered 4 section under 2/Lt F Johnson and the survivors of 3 section to follow the Gordons into Loos village. Somewhere in or near Loos village the CO of the Gordons ordered the sappers up to Hill 70.

They reached the crest of the hill around 09.30hrs from where they could see the hard pressed men in the Redoubt. They joined in here in an attempt to consolidate the position but all of them were forced to withdraw due to the weight of German fire. They went back to a position on the reverse slope, but after Captain Cardew and 2/Lt Johnson 'borrowed' a machine gun, they decided to have another go at taking the Redoubt.

The attacking force was made up of RE only and about 10 men actually got into the Redoubt but unfortunately were forced back out and the Redoubt was lost for good. Captain Cardew was seriously wounded and Johnson was hit in the leg. In spite of his wounds Johnson led several more attempts to retale the Redoubt but all failed. Nevertheless his conduct under heavy fire was noted and the war diary records '2/Lt Johnson, who although wounded, carried on till midnight, rallied his men and the parties of infantry without officers and showed great coolness and gallentry'.

He was reccomended for a VC which was gazeted in November 1915. The OH (P.202) tells us that five of the six officers in 73rd Field Co had fallen before 2/Lt Johnson won the VC.

Yet in the VC action by 2/Lt Johnson there is a second officer; Captain Cardew, who is unwounded until later in the action. We do not know if Captan CARDEW survived the war but there is a record of Captain Edward Belassis CARDEW who died on 26th September (the following day) who is commemorated on the Loos Memorial and it is tempting to think that he is the same Captain CARDEW who was seriously wounded on 25th September with 73rd Field Coy.

However he was an officer in 7th Field Coy which was based in Ypres. If it is him, why was he in Loos, not Ypres. Could he have been attached to 73rd Field Coy; perhaps he had special knowledge with gas? Perhaps it was simply a shift of resources to where they were most needed? It is also strange that the OC was a Lieutenant (Nolan) and Captain CARDEW takes over a section-not the expected role for the ranking officer.

Further research- 1. Check 7 Field Coy War Diary Sources Official History Military Operations France & Belgium 1915 Vol II Most Unfavourable Ground - Cherry

Citations & Commemorations :

  He was Mentioned in Despatches by Lord French (Complete Despatches of Lord French 1914-1916 By John French; 1917).

Masonic :

TypeLodge Name and No.Province/District :
Mother : Marine No. 232 E.C.Somerset
Joined : Siwalik No. 2939 E.C. Bengal
Joined : Dalhousie Lodge of Mussoorie & Deyrah No. 639 E.C. Bengal

13th February 1905
10th April 1905
8th May 1905

Discrepancies (Require checks, clarity or further research) :

There are several sources with different spellings of the middle name: Bellasis (Bellasism Belassis Bellesis, Bellessis etc)

Source :

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

Additional Source:

Last Updated: 2020-04-06 11:23:04