Yeovil People

Cary Reginald Ostler

Leather Glove Worker


Cary Reginald Ostler was born on 27 October 1896 at East Coker and baptised at St Michael and All Angels church in East Coker on 25 November 1896 (albeit baptised as Reginald Cary). He was the fourth of the six children of farm carter Alfred Charles Ostler (1869-1935) and his second wife Emma Christian née Gill (1870-1954), known as Christian. Alfred and Christian's children, all born in East Coker, were; Sidney (b1892), Maurice (b1893), Ida (1894-1941), Cary, Olive (b1899) and Norah (b1900). In the 1901 census, the family were recorded at Darvole, East Coker.

At the age of 11, Cary started work on a farm. In the 1911 census he was listed as a 15-year-old assistant cowman on a farm at Childhay, Crewkerne, where he remained until he joined the army in 1914, at the outbreak of the First World War - although he was under age when he enlisted. Cary became a Private in the 1st/5th Battalion of the Somerset Light Infantry. The 1st/5th Battalion was a Territorial Battalion formed on 4 August 1914 at the County Territorial Hall, Taunton, as part of the South-Western Brigade, Wessex Division. It was initially stationed at Plymouth for a few days and then proceeded to Salisbury Plain. On 9 October 1914 the Battalion, including Cary, sailed from Southampton and arrived at Bombay, India, on 9 November 1914. The battalion remained at Jubbulpore until December, when it proceeded to Ambala. Strenuous training began almost immediately and continued almost for the next year.

On 25 December 1923, at the Congregational church in Princes Street, 27-year-old Cary married 23-year-old Dora Annie Alexandra Cottle (1902-1970), the daughter of John and Elizabeth Cottle. Dora was a leather glove machinist of 7 Frederick Place and after their wedding, Cary and Dora lived with her parents. The 1939 England Register listed Cary and Dora, together with Dora's father John Cottle at 7 Frederick Place. Cary gave his occupation as 'Labourer (Gloving)', Dora gave her occupation as 'Unpaid Domestic Duties' and John listed his as ' Chemist's Porter (Retired). Cary worked for glove manufacturers Atherton & Clothier of Court Ash for thirty years.

Cary and Dora eventually moved to 86 Northbrook Road, where Dora died in 1969, aged 67. Cary died at home during the winter of 1978. He was 82 years old.




The entry in the East Coker parish register of Cary's baptism of 25 November 1896.


Courtesy of Carole Ostler

Photographed by Walter Rendell while home on leave during the Great War, Cary poses in his uniform of the Somerset Light Infantry.


Courtesy of Carole Ostler

Cary and Dora photographed on their wedding day, 25 December 1923.


Courtesy of Carole Ostler

During the Second World War, Cary served as a Special Constable.