Frederick Cronshaw was born in 1902 and came from Sompting near Worthing. He was enrolled in the International Brigades on 24th February 1937 and left Spain later that year. His Brigade number was 843 and as he was enrolled on the same day as Vincent Leo Deegan, whose number was 845, it is possible that they travelled together. Volunteers were often put into small groups of two or three so that they would not look as conspicuous as a large group travelling together, to evade the attention of the British or French police and secret services. Under the terms of the Non-Intervention Pact the French had closed the border between France and Spain and the UK had invoked a 19th century law making it illegal for British subjects to fight for a foreign power.