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Frederick was born in Wolverhampton in 1888, the son of Thomas and Sarah Ann Andrews. In 1901, they were living at 34 Oak Street, Wolverhampton, along with Frederick’s siblings Bernard, Madeline, Arthur and William Harry. They were at the same address in 1911, by which date Frederick had become a secretary to a gear case manufacturer. He married Daisy Maude Speed in  the Wesleyan Chapel, Newhampton Road, Wolverhampton on 20 December 1913. They had a daughter, Hilary Joyce, born on 23 January 1917.

On 10 December 1915, Frederick enlisted with the Royal Garrison Artillery (number 167732), by which date his address was 26 Argyle Road, Wolverhampton. His trade was given as Chief Clerk and Secretary, Walters Wolverhampton Ltd.  Included in his service file is a letter from the company, giving their address as Melbourne Street, Wolverhampton, stating their consent to his leaving their employment to join the army. He was mobilised on 3 July 1917, and demobilised on 25 September 1919. Unfortunately, when he moved house from Oak Street to 125 Park Lane, Low Hill Estate, Wolverhampton, he appears to have lost his discharge certificate and papers, and there is a letter on his file requesting copies of these, “for the purpose of obtaining a position in the Ministry of Labour office”.

Frederick’s name also appears on the list of Wolverhampton Special Constables, presumably he served as such in the early part of the War, prior to being mobilised.