William Hampden Gabbett

There is a service record at Kew in WO374/26148 for a Captain W H Gabbett. Captain Gabbett's file at Kew shows his home address: Mount Rivers, Newport, Limerick. which is consistent with the man involved in the ambush.

1868 Feb 27. born with birth registered in Limerick Reg District.

1899 Boer War. Gabbett, William Hampden, Private 2277. 7th company, 4th Battalion Imperial Yeomanry. The Queen's South Africa (QSA) Medal Clasps: Wittebergen, Cape Colony

1901 census living at Mount Rivers, Killoscully, Tipperary

1901 Oct 12. Pembroke Yeomanry, William Hampden Gabbett, Gent, to be Second Lieutenant.

1905 Aug 23. Pembroke Yeomanry; Second Lieutenant W. H. Gabbett to be Lieutenant.

1911 census Living at Mount Rivers, Killoscully, Tipperary.

1914 Aug 26. 2nd Pembrokeshire Yeomanry (Castlemartin). Lieutenant William H. Gabbett to be Captain.

1916 May 27. Capt. W. H. Gabbett relinquishes his comm. on account of ill-health. He suffered from acute eczema from around October 1916

1919 May 26. London Gazette published his resignation from his Commission

1921 Jan 21. He was fined for being in possession of arms and ammunition

1921 May 14. he was involved in the Coolboreen Ambush while motoring in the car driven by District Inspector Biggs

In his statement at the Military Inquiry he stated that he was in Newport on the 14th, when he was overtaken by Miss Barrington and Miss Coverdale. Eventually they were joined by Captain Biggs and [Lt Trengrouse], and set out in Biggs's motor car for a house where they had tea. They left about seven o'clock on the return journey, and when they got to Coolboreen bridge, which was three miles from Newport, fire was opened on the car. The motor carried on for a few yards, and then stopped. Captain Biggs, who was driving, had Miss Barrington beside him, and he appeared to be hit. Witness saw Miss Barrington tumble out of the car on to the side of the road, and he thought that she must have been also hit then. Captain Biggs got out of the car and advanced about twenty yards up the road and then fell. Witness and [Lt Trengrouse], also got out, and he saw [Lt Trengrouse] on the road with his revolver in his hand. Witness started to crawl in the direction of Captain Biggs, the other lady remaining in the car. The firing was going on all the time on his right and left and from behind. Witness next heard [Lt Trengrouse] ask Capt. Biggs if he could help him, but he received no reply. [Lt Trengrouse] then turned Biggs over and eventually he thought he saw [Lt Trengrouse] fire two or three shots. Biggs and [Lt Trengrouse] were in civilian clothes. While the firing was going [Mr Gabbett]saw some men come out on the bridge, and he shouted to them to stop firing, that there was only a girl in the car. At this time he had his hands up, and he next saw about twelve men on the road. One of them said to witness "You have a pistol in your hand", and he replied that it was only a pipe. Witness then removed his gloves and was covered by two men with revolvers. The leader asked where was Biggs, and witness said he was lying on the road, and that the only person in the car was a lady. While on the roadway ten or twelve shots were fired from rifles into the body of Captain Biggs, one man remarking that he was the man they wanted. The attacking party could have seen that there were ladies in the car when fire was opened on it. The men then went back to the motor near where Miss Barrington was lying, and one said something about being sorry and another said it was better for them to disperse. All of the men had rifles except one who had a revolver. When Miss Barrington was being removed he noticed her right leg badly shattered, as if she was struck by an expanding bullet.

1946 Jun 1. died unmarried at Mount Rivers.

1947 And the house sold

Coolbaleen Ambush