Albert Pollard was the son of Horace Thomas and Florence Pollard, nee Hawkins. His uncle was Frederick Arthur who is also listed on the Memorial, the common link being Horace’s father, also called Horace. Frederick was actually only four years older than Albert. Horace Thomas had been injured while fighting during WW1 and had a war pension.
Albert was born on 17/11/1916 and was the middle child of three born to the couple. He attended Western Road School before starting work for the Home and Colonial Stores. He later worked for the Ringmer Building Works and in 1939 was listed as a builders’ labourer.
At that time the family were living at 18 Landport Road. His elder brother, yet another Horace, was invalided out of the army after the evacuation of Dunkirk and his sister was a member of the ATS.
Albert was called up in March 1940, numbered 6403842, and after training joined the 2nd Battalion Queen’s Westminsters. Following a reorganisation in 1941 they were renamed the 12th (Queen’s Westminsters) Battalion Kings Royal Rifle Corps. They were a Territorial Force and spent much of the war in the UK.
A period of intensive training in the lead up to the Normandy invasion may have concentrated Albert’s mind, as he married Lucy Vera Joan Boltwood at St Leonard’s church, Heston Middlesex on 11 March 1944. They honeymooned in Lewes.
Albert landed in France on D Day, with his battalion forming part of the 8th Armoured Brigade. They advanced across France with actions at Rauray on 26th June and at Mont Pinçon as part of Operation Epsom between 26 – 30th June. They were advancing towards Caen when Albert was killed on 01/08/1944.
Albert was originally buried at St Pierre du Fresne, but following the decision of the CWGC to concentrate all war graves in communal cemeteries where proper maintenance of the graves could be undertaken he was re-interred with honour at Hottot-les-Bagues War Cemetery at Bayeux in grave XII.E.11.
He is remembered on both the Southover Memorial and the St John sub Castro Memorial, as well as Lewes War Memorial.
In a sad twist of fate his uncle Frederick died just two months later, and slightly further along the same route that Albert was taking.