Name: Hedlay Gunton

Birth Date: 1896 Where: Mathinna, Tasmania
Died: Where:
Place of Enlistment: Claremont, Tasmania Age: 19
Serial Number: 2051 Battalion: 26th, 3rd Reinforcement
Rank on Enlistment: Private Rank on Discharge/Death: Private

Awards: 1914 - 15 Star, British War Medal 1914 - 1920, Victory Medal,

 

Photograph Gunton

Service Details:

 

 

29 June

1915                      Enlisted

10 September

1915                      Embarked fromMelbourne

11 December

1915                      Gallipoli

21 March

1916                      France

6/7 June

1916                      Trench Raid

29 July

1916                      Wounded, Pozieres (Sausage Valley)

19 October

1918                      Returned to Battalion

11 November

1918                      Armistice

20 May

1919                      Disembarked, Hobart

27 July

1919                      Discharged

 

 

 

 

Biographical Details:

Hedley Gunton was born in Mathinna, Tasmania in 1896 to Robert John and   Margaret Gunton. He had a brother, Peter, who served with the 15th Battalion, was wounded and discharged early 1918.
A miner, Hedley enlisted in the 3rd Reinforcement of the 26th Battalion. After training in Egypt he eventually joined his unit at Gallipoli just before the AIF withdrew. He was with the 7th Brigade when it returned to Egypt and when it landed in Marseilles in March 1916.
Hedley volunteered for the 6/7th June Trench Raid and was part of the Left Bombing Party. He is No. 22 in the Black ANZACs’ group photograph.
On July 29th, at Pozieres, Hedley received Gunshot Wounds to both legs and an arm and was consequently transferred to Britain for treatment. He was discharged from hospital in November and over the next 6 months was assigned to different units until in June 1917 he was admitted to Bulford Hospital with V.D.  He spent 139 days recovering and was again assigned to various units before eventually being transferred back to the 26th Battalion, at the Overseas Training Brigade, in December 1917.
At this time, for some reason not disclosed, Hedley went AWL and was declared an illegal absentee until he was apprehended four months later. A District Court Martial (DCM) sentenced him to seven months detention at Lewes Detention Barracks.  He was released after serving six months and then transferred back to Europe. In October 1918 he was attached to the Overseas Training Brigade where he stayed until returning to England in January 1919. There he was assigned to another Training Brigade, prior to being returned to Australia.
In April, 1919, Hedley embarked for Hobart where he was discharged, medically unfit, on 27th July 1919.
Hedley married after the war and had a daughter – Georgina – who became a successful author. He became a beekeeper and took up competitive cycling in which he won several Tasmanian races, before retiring to take up Croquet at which he was even more successful. At some stage he moved Queensland where he died in 1971.