Bygone news: 04 May 1917 – The Macclesfield Times

Roll of Honour; News from the Front; Announcements




Mr and Mrs James Hough, 21 Fence St, received… notification of the death of their youngest son, Private John Hough, South Lancashire Regt, who was killed in France on April 21st… [they have received] the following letter from Lance-Corporal F Ainsworth, a comrade of the deceased… Jack’s end was instantaneous and without pain. His remains have been conveyed from the trenches and buried in a small cemetery alongside many of his comrades… he was one of my best chums ever since we started training at Press Heath in early 1916… Mr James Hough, the father, is an overlooker in the mule department at the Lower Heyes Mill, where he has been employed for 51 years, having held his present position for 37 years. Private Hough was born in Fence St 28 years ago and on leaving the Daybrook St School started work at the Lower Heys and continued in employment there for 14 years. He then entered the service of the Great Central Railway Company at Penistone; afterwards he became a barman at Stockport, and his last employment in civil life was as a waiter in a large hotel at Droitwich. Enlisting on March 25th 1916, he was posted to the South Lancashire Regt with whom he trained at Prees Heath, being drafted out to France on September 18th last. Private Hough was a single man and was formerly connected with the Mill St Wesleyan Sunday School and Sunderland St Chapel.



Captain Arthur Tylston Greg, Cheshire Regiment, attached Royal Flying Corps, the eldest son of Colonel E W Greg, V.D., O.C., 4th (Reserve) Battalion the Cheshire Regt, and Mrs E W Greg, of Norcliffe Hall, Styal, has been killed in action. He was educated at Rugby School and New College, Oxford. At Rugby he was an OTC cadet officer. He matriculated at Oxford in March, 1913, and joined the Oxford OTC. In August, 1914, he received his commission as second lieutenant in the Cheshire Regiment, and went to the front in September, 1914… In September, 1916 he was selected as a candidate for the Royal Flying Corps… and was sent out for active service [last] month. On the 23rd he was killed in an aerial action…



Sergeant David James, a Macclesfield man who has fought with gallantry in two campaigns, died in Mesopotamia on April 16th from wounds received in action on the 11th of that month. Notification… has reached his wife, who lives with her five children at 100 Black Road, on Saturday.  Sergt James was born in Hurdsfield thirty-five years ago, his father, the late Mr David James, being a silk weaver. Educated at Daybrook St School, the sergeant was afterwards employed at the Lower Heys Mill, and at the age of 18 joined the 4th Cheshires, with whom he served continuously for nine years and 36 days, rising to the rank of Sergeant. He fought in the South African War from 1900-2 and possessed the Queen’s and King’s medals, each with two clasps. Upon leaving the colours he returned to his employment at the Lower Heys, and at the outbreak of the present war his period of service in the Special Reserve had expired. In September, 1914 he rejoined the Cheshires as a private, and within three days had been restored to his former rank of sergeant. For some time he was employed as drill instructor at various camps in England, and 18 months ago was drafted out to Mesopotamia, where he had since been operating with the Persian Gulf Forces. Mrs James, who has been married 14 years, has received no details [of how] her husband met his death. His brother, Lance-Corpl John James, is serving with a Scottish regiment in England, and a nephew, Charlie James – son of Mr George James of Hurdsfield – is with a Rifle Corps in France…



Mr and Mrs William Worsley, 42 Thomas St, have received new of the death in action in France of their son, Signaller John Worsley, Cheshire Regt. The sad tidings were conveyed in letters from the adjutant and a comrade, Private A W Harrison… a Macclesfield man… [who wrote]: We had been great pals out here; in fact we had been together since enlistment… Jack was a good pal to me and a good honest soldier… I am too upset to say anything more.” Signaller Worsley was 21 years of age and a native of Macclesfield. He was educated at Duke St Day School and was connected with the Parish Church and the Large Sunday School. He was formerly employed as an embroiderer at Councillor A W Hewetson’s Mill, St George’s St. He enlisted just over two years ago, and after training at Bedford and other places was drafted out to France last September. He participated in the Somme fighting… His father is in the Royal defence Corps and at present is engaged on guard duty at Banbury. He is an old soldier and went through the South African campaign, for which he holds the King’s and Queen’s medals. He had served seven years prior to the outbreak of the present struggle, when he was called up as a reservist. He is 46 years of age and formerly was employed at Messrs Armstrong & Whitworth’s, Manchester.



Mr and Mrs R Schofield, 13 Parr St, Crompton Rd, [have heard] of the death in action in France of their son, Signaller Harold Barber Schofield, of the Cheshire Regt… conveyed in [a] letter from a captain and adjutant… I am enclosing pay-book of the late Private H Schofield… with three photographs and two postcards. These were taken from the body by a private of this unit. The body was buried under supervision of Lieut F C Clark… at Vimy Ridge… A native of Macclesfield, Signaller Schofield was 20 years of age and received his education at Crompton Rd Day School. He was connected with Christ Church Sunday School, and was formerly employed as a packer at Neckwear, Ltd, and later as an engine-cleaner by the Great Central Railway Co. The Signaller had served just over twelve months in the local Territorials prior to the outbreak of war and was mobilised at the commencement of hostilities. He… was drafted out to France about nine months ago. His father follows the occupation of a cattle drover, but has been unable to work for some time owing to an accident.



News has been received by Mrs H W Millward, Roe St, that her brother, Private Ernest Fairhurst, of the Canadians, was killed in action in France on April 11th. Twenty-nine years of age, Pte Fairhurst was the son of the late Mr and Mrs Henry Fairhurst, of Macclesfield. He was of fine physique, being over six feet in height… He was employed by Mr Millward in the butchery business, and later emigrated to Canada to take up farming. Fifteen months after the outbreak of hostilities, Private Fairhurst enlisted in the Canadian Grenadier Guards. He trained in England and shortly before going to the front came to Macclesfield on furlough… Two of his brothers have responded to the call, namely Sapper Edward Fairhurst, of the Royal Engineers, and Harry Fairhurst (who has been discharged from the Army on account of a wound). Mrs Millward has two brothers-in-law serving with the colours – one in the Royal Marines and the other in the Cheshires.



Mr W Simpson, butcher, Chestergate, has received an official intimation presuming the death of his son, Private Arthur Simpson, of the Royal Fusiliers (Public Schools Battalion), who was reported missing after the battle of the Somme on July 20th, 1916. Born in Macclesfield 22 years ago, Private Simpson commenced his education at the Mill St Wesleyan Day School and afterwards went to the Modern School. On leaving there he took up a position as clerk at the office of Messrs Whittaker & Bradburn, Architects, King Edward St, and at the time of enlistment was studying in Manchester for a surveyor. Private Simpson joined the Army on the outbreak of war, and after training at Caterham and Woodcourt, was drafted out to France in November 1915. He was a well-known local sportsman and played cricket with the Macclesfield Club. While at school he gained first prize at the annual swimming gala held at the Corporation Baths. His brother, Private Frank Simpson, is serving in Salonika with the motor transport, ASC…



A fine tribute is paid to Corporal L Harrop, late of 79 High St, Macclesfield, by his captain. Corporal Harrop, and old scholar of St George’s School, was mobilised as a reservist with the Northampton Regiment and went out to France with the First Expeditionary Force. He… was wounded twice and gassed once, and was mentioned in despatches for bravery. The Corporal fought in the Boer War and had been in France two years and seven months when he was killed on March 4th last… The Captain of his regiment writes: … he showed wonderful courage and bravery. He actually was killed whilst bombing some Germans out of a trench and [was] shot by a German sniper… he had no such word as ‘fear’…



Mrs Houghton, 26 Allen St, off Brook St, has received a letter from Private C Cockshoot relating to her husband, Private Samuel Houghton, of the Cheshire Regiment, who was killed in action at the battle of Gaza… He is missed very much… Your husband was always ready and willing to liven things up, no matter what hardships we were going through. I had been with him as his chum ever since he first came out, and was only a few yards away when he met his death… Private Houghton was formerly employed as a silk dresser at Messrs J and T Brocklehurst (1911) Ltd and later at the Bollin Mills. He served in the local Territorials and re-enlisted in October 1914. He went through the Gallipoli campaign and after being in England for a while was drafted out to Egypt nearly twelve months ago. Private Houghton has three brothers in the Army, all of whom have seen active service in France. He leaves one child.



On Sunday morning, as he was about to leave home for Church service, the Vicar of Pott Shrigley (the Rev C W Aslachsen) received an official intimation stating that his son, Second Lieut H Shields Aslachsen, of the King’s Liverpool Regt, was killed in action in France on April 23rd. Nineteen years of age, the young officer was educated at St John’s Clergy School, Leather head, Surrey, and after being in the OTC was granted a commission in the 16th Liverpools two years ago. Later he was transferred to a service battalion, and took out a draft to France about eight months ago…



Private George Nolan, Manchester Regt, son of Mr Thomas Nolan, 44 Water St, Bollington, has met his death in action in France… on April 2nd… Private Nolan was born in Water St, Bollington 22 years ago and received his education at the Wesleyan Day School, being also an attendant at the Wesleyan Chapel. On leaving school he was employed as a doubler at the Adelphi Mill. Private Nolan was a well-known boxer and fought in several tournaments at Macclesfield. He was a welter-weight, and his last opponent was O’Brien, whom he met at the Macclesfield Skating Rink. He also took an interest in football. The deceased responded to the call… on November 13th 1915, and was wounded int eh calf while fighting in France on July 1st, 1916. After undergoing treatment at a hospital at Ashton-under-Lyme, he was again drafted out to France on January 1st of this year. Two brothers have done their ‘bit’. One, Private Thomas Nolan, is in France in the Royal Marines, having been out six months. The other, Private William Nolan, of the Cheshires, was wounded at Suvla Bay in the right shoulder, and was invalided home at the beginning of 1916 with enteric and frostbite. He has now obtained a temporary discharge from the service. The family has a proud military record, and no fewer than 20 relatives have played their part in the war…



Mr and Mrs Greig, 69 Turner Heath, Bollington Cross, have been informed that their son, Private John Grieg, Shropshire Light Infantry, was killed in France on April 22nd…





Private John Thomas Floy, of the Cheshire Regt, son of Mrs Floy, 10 Fowler St, was wounded at the battle of Gaza on March 26th. He has written home to say he was hit in the thigh (not seriously) and is now making good progress in hospital. Private Floy, who is 26 years of age, was born in the house where his mother now lives and received his education at Beech Lane Day School. He attended the Sunday School there and also the Parish Church. Before enlisting shortly after the commencement of the war he was employed as a cotton weaver at the Lower Heyes Mill. Private Floy was drafted out in January 1916 and his brother, Private Arthur, is serving in France with the Army Service Corps. The last-named was formerly employed by the Macclesfield Equitable Provident Society. Mrs Floy has been a widow eight years and her late husband was at one time a stoker at the Corporation Gasworks.



Signaller Ernest Thomas Harrison, Loyal North Lancs, has written to his mother, who resides at 1 Hatton St, stating that he has been wounded in Mesopotamia… I had it through the right side of the chest ad the bullet came out almost in the middle of my back… Signaller Harrison is now in hospital in India. The Signaller is 33 years of age and his wife and three children are living at Stockport. He was educated at London Rd (branch) day school, and was connected with Bourne Primitive Methodist Chapel, Byron St, his name being on the roll of honour. He was formerly employed as a polisher by Mr Bagnall, Sunderland St, and enlisted six weeks after the outbreak of war. Signaller Harrison originally joined the Army Service Corps and was drafted out to France two months after enlistment. He served fifteen months in France, and on returning to England was transferred to the Loyal North Lancs Regt. After passing his signalling examination he was drafted out to Mesopotamia in August 1916. He has two brothers in the Army, Private Fred Harrison, Cheshire Regt (in training at Great Yarmouth), and Private Jack (who is at Chester with the Army Pay Corps).



Driver Samuel Hill, Army Service Corps, whose wife and six children reside at 7 Pitt St, Sutton, has met with an accident in Mesopotamia. Mrs Hill has received the following letter from the assistant matron of the 15th General Hospital: I am writing on behalf of your husband, who was admitted here three days ago, having met with an accident. His head and shoulders were injured, and he is also suffering from chill. He is making good progress towards recovery, and you need not worry. Driver Hill is 37 years of age and a native of Macclesfield. He was born in Sutton and received his education at the London Rd (Branch) day school. Prior to enlistment he was employed by Messrs Swindells, corn merchants, Brunswick St. He joined the Colours two years ago last February, and was drafted out to Mesopotamia, where he was wounded in the eye a few months ago. Driver Hill was transferred to hospital in India and underwent two operations. He afterwards returned to his duties. His brother-in-law, Private Wm Baker, High St, has been discharged from the Army. He was wounded at Suvla Bay, and the injury necessitated the amputation of two fingers of the right hand.



Mrs Ball, licensee of the Sir Robert Peel, Higginbotham St, has received a letter from her husband, Drummer Joseph Ball, who is serving in France with the Cheshire Regt. Writing [on] April 25th, he says: … one of the Drummers was the first wounded, and it was terrible to see… we advanced on a village, where Bill spotted us with his aircraft. So we got it hot, shells flying in all directions as we were carrying the wounded off. We were there ten days and occupied Bill’s dug-outs. He has some fine ones about 40 feet deep… they had beds in the dug-outs… I had a very narrow escape. While walking towards the dressing station with wounded we heard a shell coming. We dropped flat on the ground and the shell exploded. My mate, who was hit, ran into a shell hole, and I followed and dressed his wound, which was at the side of his throat. When I returned I saw that one had been killed and three wounded and I was the only one to escape… Mrs Ball has also three sons in the Army, one of whom, Private George Ball, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, has been reported missing since the engagement at Gaza on March 26th…



Mr and Mrs Reg Oliver, 48 West Bond St, have received another interesting letter from their son, Corporal C W Oliver, who is a despatch rider attached to the Royal Engineers. He has been serving in France for the last two years and has not had a furlough for fifteen months…: I suppose you read… about the glorious victory… at Arras… there were more prisoners than the lads could cope with… I saw thousands of [Germans] pass through and also saw the Tanks going up for action… Arras has not had the shelling that Ypres had… the basements are quite good shelters for our troops. We (the despatch riders) have properly struck oil. We found a house where the civilians had to leave very hurriedly, and only the roof is damaged. Going upstairs we found some mattresses… carrying on… we found a nice table and cooking range, and… ‘obtained’ some coal. Corporal Oliver, who celebrated his 24th birthday on Tuesday, also mentions that he has seen some lovely duels in the air.



Private Joseph Harold Beard, Ches Regt, son of Mr Henry Beard, Wellington Rd, Bollington, has written… describing his experiences on a torpedoed vessel, to his wife, who lives with her sister, Mrs Bassett, 49 Wellington Rd: I set sail on April 13th and we were torpedoed on the 15th… I got into a boat and when they started to lower it, it capsized and about 60 of us were thrown into the water. I was in the water about four hours before being picked up, and gave myself up for lost many a time. I shall never forget the cries of the drowning… When I got rescued on of the tars put me on his back, took me to his cabin and put me to bed with four blankets. We were 160 miles from any place… I am in hospital suffering from pleurisy brought on by my immersion and am being well-cared for by English nurses… There were 3,000 on board but no one knows how many were saved… Private Beard is 29 years of age and before enlisting on February 29th 1916 was employed as a doubler at the Clarence Mill. He was stationed at Oswestry for some time. His younger brother, Lance-Corporal William Beard, is serving in France.





HOUGHTON – Killed in action on the 26th March, 1917, Private Samuel Houghton, of the Cheshire Regt, at Gaza, Palestine, aged 31. Dearly loved husband of Mrs Houghton. 26, Allen Street. “His duty nobly done.”



HOUGHTON – In loving memory of our dear brother, Private S Houghton, killed in action in Egypt, March 26th 1917.

The first one of the four to fall,
He was one of the first to answer the call.
O God, in Thy mercy, think of the bereft,

Succour the wife and child he has left;
Succour the three brothers he has left in the field.
And in Thy great love be their guard and their shield.

From his sorrowing Sisters and Soldier Brothers,
48 Gloucester Street, Oldham.

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