Queen’s South Africa Medal, 3 bars, Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, 37755 P. Sergt E.M. Bannister, French’s Scouts. Later Agent in the Field Intelligence Department.
Edward Martin Bannister was born in Forest Gate, Essex, England during 1877, to James & Eliza A. Bannister, his father was working with the Civil Service Admiralty (Engineers Department), they lived at 77 Tyrwhitt Road in Lewisham, London in a large household of 4 daughters, 3 sons & 2 servants.
The Kentish Mercury 19th August 1887, lists him as one of 5 boys to earn a Scholarship for a year of free Schooling at Herrick Foundation School Loampit Hall, Lewisham High Road from his results in the 1887 examination.
He is listed on the New Cross, Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys School South African War Memorial Plaque in Lewisham, unveiled in 1915. It contains the names of the 25 Old Askeans who volunteered to serve in the Boer War.
During the Boer War he served as Pay Sergeant of French’s Scouts, he enlisted on 8th December 1899 and was discharged on 6th May 1901. He then appears to have joined the Field Intelligence Department as an Agent, earning the King’s South Africa Medal, with 2 bars.
He remained in South Africa afterwards and married Margaret Catharine Human on 28th September 1907 in Witmattersrane, Johannesburg.