ROTD AUG 15 LARGE

 

The Western Front Association rembers soldiers who served and died, from the Allies and Central Powers, during the First World War.

 

There will usually be a picture, though not always. There is a short personal biography: when and where they were born and what they did before the war, followed by their enlistment, training, and service.

 

All WW1 forces, all sides, on all fronts, east to west remembered as individual soldiers, nurses, labourers and others on the home front, their lives, service, their loss, burial and commemoration. 

 

Some can be more detailed than others. Included will be their final action or cause of death and their final resting place. 

 

Research by David O'Mara.

 

Readers are invited to add their comments and to submit ideas for people to feature.

2 July 1916 L Cpl William Allen18003 L Cpl William Allen, 11th Bn East Lancashire Regt.

(The man who potentially shares a grave with Charles Stonehouse, it is highly likely that William actually died on the 1 July 1916 but the CWGC and SDGW list his date of death as being the 2 July 1916).

Born in Accrington, Lancashire in 1884, William was employed as a spinner at Woodnook Mill, Accrington prior to enlistment and was also a member of the congregation of Oak Street Congregationalist Church and, at some time, a member of Accrington swimming club.

Serving with 'W' Coy of the 11th East Lancs (the 'Accrington Pals'), William was killed during the assault on Serre and is buried in Serre Road Nr.3 military cemetery (grave B.23) along with an 'unknown Lieutenant'.

2 July 1916

Research by David O'Mara

1 July 1916 Lieut Charles StonehouseLieut Charles Stonehouse, W Coy 11th Bn East Lancs Regt.

Born in Blackburn, Lancashire on 15 May 1882, Charles was an architect in Manchester in his civilian life. A keen sportsman, he played amateur football for Blackburn Crosshill FC and also represented his town at hockey. Charles enlisted into the East Lancashire Regiment in Accrington on 17 September 1914 as a private and was issued with the regimental number 15360. Not long after enlistment, he was promoted to Lance Corporal before being recommended for a commission, which was taken up on 18 January 1915. Charles received a further promotion to Lieutenant, on 20 June 1915.

After seeing service in Egypt, Charles arrived in France on 8 March 1916 and served on the northern Somme front before taking part in the assault on Serre on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. During this attack, Charles was hit in the wrist in front of the German frontline trench and was receiving aid from his orderly (Roland Banks) when he was hit again. This second bullet hit Charles in the head killing him outright. Banks was also killed at this point. Being so close to the German frontline, the retrieval of Charles' body was impossible until February 1917 by which time his remains were unidentifiable. His name is, therefore, listed on the panels of the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing (however, it is almost certain that the grave containing the remains of an 'Unknown Lieutenant of the Great War – East Lancashire Regiment' in Serre Road Nr.3 cemetery (grave reference B.23) actually contains the remains of Charles Stonehouse).

1 July 1916

  

Research by David O'Mara 

Black and white photograph of Inf. Georg Huber
Inf. Georg Huber

 

 

Inf. Georg Huber, 6 Komp., Kgl. Bayerisches 15. Infanterie-Regiment ’König Friedrich August von Sachsen’

 

Georg was born at Hohenkurch, Bavaria on 26 May 1896. He was a miller. 

Called into service during the late summer of 1914, he was engaged in trench routine on the Somme, Artois and Flanders through 1915 into 1916 before moving to the Verdun battle in May 1916.

Killed in action at Verdun on 30 June 1916.

Georg was buried in the German military cemetery at Consenvoye, Meuse.

30 June 1916 killed in action

 

Research by David O'Mara.

 

 

REFERENCE

 

Histories of 251 Divisions of the German Army which Participated in the War US General Staff, Pub.1920

Schlachten des Weltkrieges (Band 15 - Die Tragödie von Verdun 1916 (3 und 4 Teil)) – Pub: Berlin 1929

Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge (www.volksbund.de)

Verlustlisten 1.Weltkrieg (http://des.geneology.net)

29 June 1916 Pte Leslie Crompton Blackman3234 Pte Leslie Crompton Blackman, ‘D' Coy, 5th Bn AIF.

Born at Miners Rest, Victoria in 1885, Leslie was a blacksmith by trade (although he was working as a gas fitter for the Melbourne Gas Co at the time of his enlistment). He enlisted in Melbourne on 5 July 1915 and he left Australia - bound for Egypt - on 11 October.

After serving in Egypt, he arrived in Marseilles, France on 30 March 1916 and was serving in the ‘nursery sector' of Ploegsteert, Belgium by June. On the night of 29/30 June, Leslie was engaged in a fatigue party carrying gas-cylinders to the front-line when he was killed by a shell explosion to the north of Ploegsteert Wood. Leslie was brought back for burial at Berks Cemetery Extension where he lies to this day.

29 June 1916 Killed in action 

Research by David O'Mara

30 June 1917 Cpl Alex Robert Colman439764 Cpl Alex Robert Colman, C Coy 52nd Bn CEF

Born at Tranmere, Cheshire on 15 April 1897, Alex moved to Montgomery County, Indiana, USA in 1912 where he was a student. He then moved to Canada, where he gained employment as a stenographer and enlisted into the Canadian Army at Port Arthur, Ontario on 13 September 1915.

Trained at Port Arthur and Gresley Park, he was sent to the UK on 23 November 1915, prior to service in France and Flanders from 21 February 1916. A veteran of the action at Mt Sorrel and the Somme Battle in 1916, Alex took part in the Battle of Arras (Vimy Ridge) in 1917 before being killed in action on 30 June 1917 near Lens.

Alex is buried in Barlin Communal Cemetery Extension, Pas de Calais.

30 June 1917 killed in action 

Research by David O'Mara

 Colour photograph of Commonwealth War Graves Commission gravestone to William James Lumber and  Henry George Noyce
Grave of either William James Lumber and  Henry George Noyce


204802 Pte William James Lumber

34141 Pte Henry George Noyce, Hampshire Regiment.

 

La Clytte Military Cemetery is a concentration cemetery located eight kilometers to the south west of Ypres in the village of Klijte.

Walk through the main entrance to the end of one of the six rows of headstones nearest the War Stone and you will find an unusual headstone, possibly unique, dedicated to ‘The Memory of 204802 Pte. W Lumber and 34141 Pte. H Noyce, Hampshire Regiment, 30th June 1918, one of whom is buried in this grave’.

William James Lumber was born in East Stoke near Wareham, Dorset and was the son of William and Lois Lumber. He enlisted in Winchester and joined the 1/1st Hampshire Carabiniers Yeomanry. On the 27th September 1917 they amalgamated at Caestre in France with the 15th (Service) Battalion, Hampshire Regiment.

Henry George Noyce was born in Southampton (possibly the son of James and Harriet Noyce) and married Annie Turner in 1912. He enlisted in Southampton and initially served with the 2nd Battalion, Hampshire Regiment before being later posted to the 15th (Service) Battalion.

On 29th June 1918 the 15th (Service) Battalion, Hampshire Regiment marched from the Watou area, west of Poperinge, to Abeele where it bivouacked for the night near the Canadian Casualty Clearing Station at Remy Siding. The following evening at 9.00pm it resumed its march and relieved the 1st Battalion, 103rd French Army in the front line near La Clytte. The relief was completed by 2.00am but they suffered 7 casualties, 3 killed and 4 wounded.

Private W. Lumber and Private H. Noyce were killed along with 8481 Company Serjeant Major J Nunn, DCM, MM.

Speculation is that that Privates Lumber and Noyce had been seen together when hit by a shell. Presumably only one, unidentifiable body, or parts of bodies, could be found for burial and so the occupant of the grave is either Private Lumber or Private Noyce.

The CWGC website advises that originally the burial was in Leicester Camp Cemetery before being moved to La Clytte Military Cemetery.


James Nunn was born in Camberley, Surrey and was married to Elizabeth. He also served with the 2nd Battalion, Hampshire Regiment, seeing action in Gallipoli, before also later joining the 15th (Service) Battalion.

He won the Military Medal (MM) in 1916 when a Serjeant and in 1917 the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM).

The citation for the DCM reads ‘For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. With a few men he rushed an enemy strong point which threatened to hold up the advance of a whole brigade. Though wounded in the advance, he was the first to reach the objective, and when the enemy counter-attacked he took command of his company and held his position when the troops on both flanks were driven back. His conduct throughout was beyond all praise’.

CSM James Nunn also is buried close by in La Clytte Military Cemetery.

30 June 2016 killed in action

 

 

Research by Chris Ludlam, WFA Yorkshire Branch

 

 

REFERENCE

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

War Diary of the 15th (Service) Battalion, Hampshire Regiment

The Long, Long Trail

Great War Forum

 Black and white photograph of Sdt Cl Benoit Grouiller
 Sdt Cl Benoit Grouiller 

 

987 Sdt.2.Cl. Benoit Grouiller, 157e Règiment d’Infanterie

 

Born at Nouilly, Loire on 5 February 1880, Benoit, a reservist in 1914, was a resident of Roanne, Loire, when he was called back into full time service during the first week of August 1914.

He saw his first actions during the 1st Battle of Ypres in October- November 1914 before moving onto the Belgian coast over the winter of 1914/15.

This was followed by a move down to the Wöevre and St.Mihiel sectors in March 1915 where he was to remain for the remainder of his service.

At the end of June 1915, Benoit was gravely wounded in action and died in a dressing station in the Bois de Ménil, Ménil–la-Tour, Meurthe-et- Moselle on 29 June 1915.

He was buried in the Nécropole Nationale of ‘Noviant aux Pres’ at Noviant, Meurthe-et- Moselle.

29 June 1915 killed in action.

 

Research by David O'Mara.

 

REFERENCE

Le Tableau d’Honneur de la Guerre– Journal de Roanne Supplement Pub. Roanne 1914-16

Historique su 157 e R.I., Campagne 1914-1918 Pub :Gap 1922

Tableau d’Honneur – Morts pour La France Pub. Paris 1921

Sepultures de Guerre (www.memoiredeshommes.sga.defense.gouv.fr)

Morts Pour La France de la Première Guerre Mondiale (fiches des soldats MPF) ( www.memoiredeshommes.sga.defense.gouv.fr )

Journaux des marches et opérations des unités engagées dans la Première Guerre mondiale ( www.memoiredeshommes.sga.defense.gouv.fr )

Les Armées françaises dans la Grande Guerre. Pub. Paris

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