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Frederick Francis Bourlet


Serial No:
Serial No. 1989

Camel Corps, 15th Light Horse Regiment & 14th Light Horse Regiment


Frederick Francis Bourlet - Information

When war broke out British migrant Frederick Francis Bourlet was living in Rossmore with his wife, Henrietta and their children. The Bourlets lived on a property called Iona and supported the family working as farmers. The war was to change everything. In October 1916, Frederick and Henrietta said goodbye to their son James, when he enlisted in the AIF. This inspired Frederick himself, and at the age of 44, he joined up at the Royal Showground Camp on the 18th of December 1916. Frederick was taken from Moore Park Camp to Menangle Camp as part of the 2nd Camel Corps. He was then sent overseas for war service, leaving Sydney Harbour on the 3rd of February 1917 on the RMS Karmala.

In mid March 1917, he landed in Suez, Egypt and the following month was taken on strength to Details Camp at Moascar. In May, Frederick was taken on strength to the 3rd ANZAC Battalion. The Camel Corps along with the Light Horse conducted patrols throughout Palestine and into the Jordan Valley. In July 1918, Frederick was transferred to the 15th Light Horse. However, throughout his time in the desert, he was feeling very debilitated. Frederick was admitted to hospital, and was shortly released to the 14th Light Horse Regiment. However, in mid September he was back in hospital. Fighting in the immense heat, with poor food and tainted water would have been very difficult. He was subsequently invalided home on the Berrima with debility. Reaching Sydney, he took a train to Liverpool where he met his grateful wife. He and Henrietta were driven by car to Rossmore where they met a mass of local residents at the Post Office. They cheered and thanked him for his service, providing refreshments and singing ‘he’s a jolly good fellow.’