Dorothy Louise Stacey was born in 1893, the eldest child of Alfred Stacey, a farmer, and his wife Mary.
The family lived at Middle Farm in Charlton Horethorne, a small village midway between Sherborne and Wincanton. Alfred Stacey ran the farm, and by the time of the 1901 census, the family of four had a live-in domestic servant, Beatrice Baker.
Things had moved on by the next census return of 1911. Alfred and Mary had moved the young family 150 miles east, where they were now running Buttons Farm in Wadhurst, East Sussex. I can find no familial link for what would have been a significant move in the early 1900s, but it may be that Alfred was headhunted. The records show that Mary and Dorothy were assisting Alfred in running the farm, along with new domestic servant Mary Hide. The family were joined by Marjorie Anderson, a live-in governess for younger daughter Mollie.
Dorothy Stacey joined the Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service Reserves (QAIMNS) during the war. The official female unit for medical services in the British Army, those joining had to come from ‘good families’ and be qualified nurses. It can only be assumed, therefore, that Dorothy undertook additional training after 1911, presumably in order for her to be able to join up.
Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any specific information regarding Staff Nurse Stacey’s service. The QAIMNS worked both on the home front and in France, but it is likely that Dorothy remained on home soil.
The cause of Dorothy’s passing also remains lost. She does not come up in newspaper records of the time, and, given the wide range of diseases that nurses would have encountered at the time, it is likely that she contracted something like influenza or dysentery.
Staff Nurse Dorothy Louise Stacey died in Wareham, Dorset, on 5th October 1918, just a month before the end of the Great War. She lies at rest in Sherborne Cemetery.
For the stories of more of the fallen from the Great War, take a look at my Commonwealth War Graves page.