Bygone news: 22 Dec 1916 – The Macclesfield Times

News from the Macclesfield Times and East Cheshire Observer of Friday 22nd December 1916.

Bollington Roll of Honour; Local Men at the Front; Other Local News




Mr and Mrs Wm Brown, Palmerston Street, Bollington, have received an official intimation stating that their son, Private Arthur Brown, King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, who was previously reported missing, was killed in action in France on Nov 13th… the body of the deceased soldier had been found by a soldier belonging to a Scotch regiment. Private Brown was born in Bollington twenty-four years ago. He was educated at the Church Schools under Mr Oliver Kenyon, and attended the Parish Church, being a member of the Young Men’s Bible Class. Private Brown had been employed by Messrs H and L Slater Ltd, paper stainers, since he was twelve years of age. He enlisted in February and was drafted out to France the last week of July. A brother of the deceased, Sergt John Brown, enlisted in the Manchesters two years ago, and was subsequently transferred to the Lancashire Regt. He was drafted out to France the same day his parents received the sad news of his brother’s death.



News has been received of the death in action of Private H Brown, of the Australian contingent, son of Mr Harry Brown, who formerly carried on a fish and game business in Palmerston Street. The sad intelligence was contained in the following letter written by a comrade to a relative: …your cousin has made the greatest sacrifice of all for the homeland. I enlisted with him, and he was my comrade in Australia, Egypt and France to the day of his death… He was shot through the head and died instantly… His other two comrades were wounded and his death occurred on the morning of the 14th. From his sorrowing comrade, Private Harkness. The deceased soldier was a native of Bollington and 23 years of age. He received his education at the Church Day Schools under Mr Oliver Kenyon and on leaving assisted his father in the business. Private Brown was connected with the Parish Church and the Bollington Sunday School. He was an only son. His father emigrated to Australia between three and four years ago, and Private Brown was married shortly before he responded to the call of the Motherland. He enlisted just after the outbreak of war, and was drafted out to France in May.




Mrs Bailey, 24 Water Street, Macclesfield, had the proud privilege this week of welcoming home from active service, husband and son. Unfortunately the latter is still a hospital patient suffering from the effects of a fractured arm caused by a German bullet during an attack on the enemy trenches in September. The husband is Private Samuel Bailey, a driver in the Army Service Corps, and the son Corporal Harry Bailey, of the Grenadier Guards. Private Bailey, who had been in the employ of the Macclesfield Corporation for over twenty years, enlisted shortly after the outbreak of the war, and has been in France with the A.S.C. for twelve months. He returned to duty at the beginning of the week, after spending a few days’ leave with his wife and family…

Corporal Bailey, the son, is twenty years of age and a finely-built young man. He was educated at St Alban’s School and when 16½ joined the Grenadiers. Drafted to the front on January 22nd 1915, he had twenty months arduous campaigning before being rendered hors de combat. He went out as a private, received his first stripe in March 1915 and was made full corporal last August… The Corporal has been in… many battle areas, including Guinchy, Festubert, Loos and Ypres… Speaking of the Somme fighting, Corporal Bailey… said… on September 15th the Guards made their first attack, his battalion being the one that went over the parapet… He said, “I got plugged about twenty minutes after the attack started. We charged the German trench amid a hail of shot and shell. As soon as we got there, or all that was left of us, the Germans who had been firing on us threw up their hands. So in the trench we jumped to take them prisoners. Just as I jumped in a… German who was standing in the doorway of the dug-out fired at me and got me through the elbow. I dropped my gun, but not the bomb I had, and I let him have it…” The bullet struck the bone of the arm and fractured it, and the Corporal was eventually transferred to the Beaufort War Hospital at Bristol, where he has been ever since… Corporal Bailey… is a nephew of Sergeant-Major Parker, of the Macclesfield Battalion of the Cheshire Volunteer Regt…



Private Fred Bullock, South Lancashire Regt, son of Mr and Mrs James Bullock, 10 Blackshaw St, Macclesfield, has met with a serious accident in France. He is now lying in a London hospital. Private Bullock, it appears, was engaged in tunnelling operations and received his injuries through the collapse of a roof. He was severely hurt about the body and legs and his side was badly crushed. His wife, who lives in Pitt Street, and his father are leaving during the weekend for London to see him.

Private Bullock is twenty years of age. He enlisted on April 13th last under the Derby Scheme and was drafted to France after three months’ training. For many years he had been in the employ of Councillor A W Hewetson as an embroiderer at the St George’s Street Mill, and he attended the St George’s Street Baptist Church.



Lance-Corporal Harold McCormick, of the Manchester Regt, son of Mr and Mrs McCormick, 39 Prestbury Rd, Macclesfield, has been wounded in the face and left hand with shrapnel while fighting in France, and is now in hospital in Scotland, where he is making satisfactory progress. The lance-corporal enlisted in September, 1914 and was drafted out to France last August with the Cheshires, subsequently being transferred to the Manchesters. Prior to joining the colours, Lance-Corporal McCormick was a bandsman in the Salvation Army along with his brother, Private Bromley McCormick, who was wounded in the spine in November, 1915. He has been discharged from the Army, and is now in the Star and Garter Home, Richmond, Surrey.




Since the outbreak of the war, farriers all over the country have been engaged in making horse shoes for the Army in France. The country is divided into districts so as to completely control the production, each district having a central depot to which the shoes are sent to be examined and passed. The depot for the north is Liverpool, and in April last, with the object of increasing the supply and quality, it was decided to offer prizes to the men engaged in making the shoes, the competition to be for a period of six months from the 1st of May… Mr Harry Poole, Warren Smithy, Gawsworth, near Macclesfield, has won the first prize of £10, and his brother, Mr A Poole, of Somerford Booths Smithy, near Congleton, has been awarded the fourth prize. Mr Harry Poole has had one assistant, Mr Arthur Rose, of Macclesfield, and together they have produced between 9,000 and 10,000 Army horse-shoes in the six months, in addition to their ordinary work. Mr Arthur Poole, with one assistant, has produced about 6,000 shoes. They are the sons of Mr Edwin Poole, of Somerford Booths… other prizewinners are farriers… [from] Blackburn, the Isle of Man, Cockermouth, Carlisle, Preston, etc…



An effort is being made to provide every Sutton man at the front – some 70 in number – with a suitable gift in the New Year. Two whist drives have been held in Langley which realised over £12…



Christmas… is again upon us, and there are indications of a mild festival so far as the weather conditions are concerned. Many familiar faces will be absent from the family circle on account of the inability of husbands and sons to obtain leave of absence, and there are vacant chairs that, alas! can never be filled. Shops and factories will be closed on Monday and Tuesday. The customary religious observance in the churches and chapels will take place, and the usual social functions have been arranged… Special efforts are being made by the staffs of the three local auxiliary military hospitals – the General Infirmary, Hurdsfield House, and Prestbury Road – to create the traditional atmosphere for the wounded soldiers who are compelled to spend Christmas in Macclesfield. All the wards have been brightly decorated and the walls adorned with appropriate mottoes. At Hurdsfield House the dinner will include roast turkey and plum pudding. A whist drive is being promoted, in addition to an entertainment by the staff and patients. Each soldier will receive a fitting present in the form of a silver match-box bearing the inscription “H.H.H. Christmas 1916”. These gifts have been provided through the generous contributions of various friends of the institution, and the cost of the dinner will also be met… Extra fare is being furnished for the men int eh Infirmary and at Prestbury Road, where concerts and entertainments will also take place. On Boxing day all the wounded soldiers in Macclesfield are being invited… to a social gathering at the Stanley Hall… Christmas greeting cards (the gift of Mr G A Till, printer, Mill Street) accompanied by a postal order for half-a-crown, are being dispatched by the Mayor (Alderman E Crew, J.P.) to Macclesfield soldiers in home stations, the cost of the orders being defrayed out of a fund placed at the disposal of his Worship, which has been this week augmented by a substantial contribution representing the balance of the fund for soldiers’ and sailors’ comforts… This year the price of Christmas provisions and poultry is considerably [more than] twelve months ago… Turkey are selling in Macclesfield at 1s 6d to 2s per lb, and at Leadenhall Market, London, this week, a bird which turned the scales at 30lbs fetched the record price of £3 7s 6d or 2s 3d per lb.



Another enjoyable social to the military patients in the General Infirmary, the Hurdsfield House Hospital, and the Prestbury Road Auxiliary Military Hospital was given in the Stanley Hall, Macclesfield, on Saturday under the auspices of the Wounded Soldiers’ Entertainments’ Sub-Committee. A whist drive was directed by Mr H W Bloor as M.C., and the following were the prize-winners: – 1, Private Courtney; 2, Private Mullin; 3, Private W Ward; 4, Corporal Snowden; 5, Private E Kendall…



On Tuesday last week the annual scholars’ prize distribution and concert took place at the Church School. Major Horner took the chair… The concert opened with the song… “When the Boys come Marching Home, the third verse, which refers to the fallen heroes, being feelingly rendered as a solo by one of the junior girls… At the conclusion of the concert the chairman referred to the fact that more then forty old boys were serving with the colours, amongst them being lads from Canada, Australia and New Zealand… Major Horner… congratulated the Headmaster, Mr F J Curphey, and the staff on the continued success of the school, and the two boys, Frederick Robinson and Frank Wheelton, who had won County Council Scholarships this year.


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