The local lad

Charles Leslie Paine (Charlie) 

Charlie Paine (b.22.12.1880) grew up in Worthing, son of Walter Paine the printer an influential man in the Worthing community.

As a married man Charlie was not called up until June 1916 but he was the fifth of Walter’s sons to join the war.

A bombardier with the Royal Garrison Artillery Charlie saw some bad times whilst in action at Ypres, at one point suffering shell shock. Then, in July 1917, he was the victim of a German shell gas attack. After hospital treatment in France and England Charlie was eventually posted to Shoreham in 1918 before returning to the Front.

At Shoreham Charlie trained hard, receiving a NCO’s Gunnery and Siege Course certificate. From Shoreham he would visit his family at Worthing at every opportunity, especially his father who had suffered a stroke.

He finally left the army in January 1919 to continue his career with Earl’s Court Wine Merchants. He left behind a legacy for his daughter in a journal he wrote for her called ‘What did you do in the war daddy?’

Information from niece Rosemary Pearson.

Find out more

Discover more about Charlie and his brothers in Rosemary Pearson’s excellent article at: Great War West Sussex 1914-1918, People at War, Study 41.