Soldiers of the Great War

(1914-1918)

7948 Company Quartermaster Serjeant George Downs DCM, “B” Company, 1st Battalion, Cheshire Regiment.

He was awarded his DCM for gallantry in a trench near Ypres, Belgium. He continued to operate his machine gun after the trenches on his left flank had been evacuated, thus preventing the line from being broken. He showed great ability in working his gun throughout the encounter, and in so doing secured the line.

His parents were resident on Elizabeth Street, Denton.
9549 Private Alfred Bennett of the 2nd Battalion, Cheshire Regiment.

He was twice wounded in action but he survived the war. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal. He was a former regular soldier who served for three years in India before going to France after the outbreak of war.

He lived in Greswell Street, Denton, and had worked at Denton Colliery and then for Sutton & Co who were general carriers in Ashworth Street, Denton.
3340 Private Clarence Booth of the 1/9th Battalion, Manchester Regiment.

He entered the theatre of war in the Dardanelles on the 22 October 1915 and he died of dysentery on the 8 December 1915, aged 19 years. He is buried in the Alexandria (Chatby) Military and War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the son of Samuel William Booth and Elizabeth Barlow and he was born in Denton in 1896. He lived with his parents on Pearl Street, Denton.
7487 Lance Corporal William Burt of the 1st Battalion, North Staffordshire Regiment (Prince of Wales’s).

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 22 February 1915 and he died of wounds on the 4 May 1916, aged 22 years. He is buried in Bologne Eastern Cemetery, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

In 1911 he was in the 4th Battalion, North Staffordshire Regiment, stationed at Whittington Barracks, Lichfield.

William was born in Congleton (Sandbach), Cheshire, in 1893. He married Alice Taylor at St Anne’s Church, Haughton, in 1914 and lived on Moorside Lane, Haughton.
40647 Private Ernest Collis of the Royal Army Medical Corps.

He survived the war and was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

On one occasion he and a comrade were carrying a wounded soldier on a stretcher when they were struck by a shell that killed his comrade and the wounded soldier.

His brother, 4064 Private Sydney Collis of the 10th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, was killed in action at Vierstaat, south of Ypres, on the 5 September 1915, aged 24 years.

He was born in Denton in 1885 and he married Nellie Embley at Christ Church, Denton, in 1908. He lived on Heaton Street and worked for Denton Urban District Council as well as being a member of the fire brigade.
17014 Private Philip Leonard Davies of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Welsh Fusiliers.

He enlisted in Hyde on the 6 November 1914 and he was killed in action on the 5 February 1915, aged 24 years. He is buried in the Cambrian Church Extension, France.

He is the son of Obadiah Davies and Martha Chorlton and he was born in Sheffield in 1892. In 1911 he was living with his parents on Stockport Road, Denton, and later the family moved to Kynder Street. He was a miner at Bredbury Colliery and was associated with St Lawrence’s Sunday School and a supporter of Haughton Green Rovers Football Club.
987 Private Wilfred Eaton of the 1/6th Battalion (Hyde Territorials), Cheshire Regiment.

He entered the theatre of war on the 10 November 1914 and was killed in action on the 26 February 1915, aged 21 years. He is commemorated on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium. He was awarded the 1914 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

Wilfred (aka Wilfrid) is the son of Herbert Eaton and Edna Booth and he was born in Denton in 1893.

In 1911 he was living with his parents on Hyde Road and later on Bentley Road. He was an apprentice hat finisher.
12879 Serjeant Thomas Henry Grant of the 7th Battalion, King’s Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment).

He enlisted on the 31 August 1914 and entered the theatre of war in France on the 17 July 1915 and was killed in action on the 7 July 1916, aged 41 years. He is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, France and was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He served throughout the Battle of Loos without being injured.

He is the son of Thomas Henry Grant and Mary Barton and he was born in Hyde in 1875. He married Elizabeth Ann Harrison at St Mary’s Church, Newton in Mottram, in 1895. Thomas was survived by his wife and four children; Louis (b.1896 in Hyde), Bertha (b.1899 in Hyde), Florence (b.1901 in Hyde) and Mary (b.1907 in Denton).

He was employed as a coal miner at Denton Colliery and he lived on Peacock Street, off Ashton Road, Denton.
J/6892 Able Seaman Charles Evan Harbach.

He was serving on H.M.S. Monmouth, which sank after an action with a German cruiser off the Chilean Coast during the Battle of Coronel on Sunday, 1 November 1914. He died aged 21 years and he is commemorated on Panel 1 of the Plymouth Naval Memorial.

When H.M.S. Monmouth was sunk the entire crew was lost and among their number was Midshipman George Watson Muir, aged 15 years. He is commemorated on Panel 1 of the Plymouth Naval Memorial.

Charles Harbach was a regular in the Royal Navy and for some time he served on H.M.S. Highflyer. In 1911 he was on the battleship H.M.S. Queen at Gibraltar, which formed part of the Atlantic Fleet. The Commanding Officer was Captain Ernest F. A. Gaunt C.M.G. who was later promoted to Rear Admiral.

Charles is the son of John Harbach and Ellen Williams and he was born in Didsbury (Withington) in 1893. He lived with his parents on Manchester Road, Denton. He was a member of Hope Chapel Boys Brigade and was also connected with St Anne’s Church, Haughton.
20217 Lance Serjeant Harold Hardy of the 3rd Battalion, Grenadier Guards.

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 26 July 1915 and was killed in action on the 11 August 1918, aged 22 years. He is buried in Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the son of William Henry Hardy and Emma Warren and he was born in Hyde in 1896. He lived with his parents on Farmers Fold, off Hyde Road, Haughton, on the banks of the river Tame.
14744 Lance Corporal James Horsfall of the 8th Battalion, South Lancashire Regiment. He entered the theatre of war on the 28 September 1915 and was killed in action on the 4 November 1915, aged 37 years. He is buried in Rifle House Cemetery, Belgium. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

Rifle House Cemetery is one of three cemeteries in Ploegsteert Wood in the Ypres Salient, the other two being Ploegsteert Wood Military Cemetery and Toronto Avenue Cemetery.

He was a regular in the army and had served during the South African War. While on the Western Front he served in the signalling section.

He is the son of Edwin B Horsfall and Ellen Grice and he was born in Manchester in 1878. He married Ellen Wiseman at St George’s Church, Manchester, in 1903. He was survived by his wife and three children; Ellen (b.1904 in Ancoats), Madeline (b 1908 in Ancoats) and Thomas (b.1913 in Denton). The family lived on Gibraltar Lane, Haughton Green.
GS/8784 Private Joseph Hough of the 1st (Royal) Dragoons.

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 19 May 1915 and was killed in action on the 5 June 1915, aged 36 years. He is commemorated on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He was a regular in the army and served with the Imperial Yeomanry during the South African War. Subsequently, he joined a troop raised by Alfred Hopkinson of Ryecroft Hall, Audenshaw, before transferring to the dragoons.

Joseph was born in Ardwick in 1879 and he married Emily Meadowcroft at St Silas Church, Ardwick in 1903. Their first two children died in infancy but at the time of his death he was survived by his wife and three children; Arthur (b.1909 in Ardwick), Harry (b.1911 in Denton) and Alice (b.1913 in Denton). In 1911 he was employed as a carter for a tripe dresser and the family lived on Two Trees Lane, Haughton.
81482 Sapper George Middlemiss of the 202nd Field Company, Royal Engineers.

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 10 November 1915 and was killed in action on the 23 May 1916. He is buried in the Cerisy-Gailly Military Cemetery, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He married Frances Bilton at St Thomas’s Church, Hyde, in 1914 and the couple had one child, George, who was born in Denton in 1914. He lived on St Anne’s Road, Haughton.
17172 Private Wilfred Stanley Moores of “A” Company, 20th Battalion, Manchester Regiment.

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 9 November 1915 and was killed in action on the 1 July 1916, aged 19 years. He is buried in Dantzig Alley British Cemetery, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the son of Albert Henry Moores and Sarah Middleton and he was born in Denton in 1896. He lived with his parents on Gibraltar Lane, Haughton Green. He was an apprentice letterpress printer.
18068 Private Harry Williams of the 20th Battalion (Manchester Pals), Manchester Regiment.

He enlisted on the 17 October 1914 (his birthday) and he entered the theatre of war in France on the 9 November 1915. He was killed in action on the 23 April 1916, aged 23 years. He is buried in Citadel New Cemetery, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the only son of Samuel Henry Williams and Martha Ann Hampshire and he was born in Denton on the 17 October 1892.
22556 Private Robert Lawrence Wilson of the 23rd Battalion, Manchester Regiment.

He died of illness on the 28 November 1915, aged 21 years, and is buried in Gorton Cemetery.

He is the son of James Wilson and Amanda Mooney and he lived with his parents on Town Lane, Denton. He was employed as a shell dresser at Beyer, Peacock & Co of Gorton.
1436 Private Albert Wood of the 2nd Battalion, Manchester Regiment.

He entered the theatre of war on the 14 April 1915 and died of wounds on the 16 May 1915, aged 24 years. He is buried in the Divisional Cemetery, Belgium. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the son of Samuel Wood and Rachel Reece and he was born in Denton in 1891. In 1911 he was living with his parents on Emily Street, Oldham. He worked in a mill as a Cotton Mule Spinner Piecer.
1035 Private James Yearsley of the 2nd Company, 1st Battalion, Welsh Guards.

He entered the theatre of war in France on the 16 September 1915 and he died on the 11 September 1916, aged 18 years. He is buried in the Corbie Communal Extension, France. He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British Medal and Victory Medal.

He is the son of Alfred William Yearsley and Elizabeth Bailey and he was born in Denton in 1897. In 1911 he was living with his parents in Belgrave Street, off Taylor Lane, Denton, and he was employed as a Green Grocer’s Boy.