Last Night’s Episode featuring Lee Mack is worth watching on catch-up. Lee’s Greandfather was an original member of the 17th King’s Liverpool Regiment (1st Liverpool Pals) and Prof Peter Doyle gives some good background of the Pals movement – albeit not mentioning the 30th Division neighbours in Manchester.
Best of all Lee walked north from Maricourt to Montauban. He then visited the Manchester and Liverpool Pals Memorial, where the historian advised that ‘other Battalion’ entered the village, without mentioning which Regiment they were from. Lee did read the inscription though.
I realise I’m being oversensitive, because the producers couldn’t add too much detail, without losing some of the personal impact of Lee’s recognition of his Grandfather’s involvement.
Photo Credit RBL
The Times 21/7/1916.
Memorial Plaque in St Michael’s Church. Burgh by Sands, Cumbria. Robert was originally educated at Carlisle Grammar School 1903-1910. In common with a large group of 17th Bttn Officers, Robert was also St Bees Old Boy (1910-14) and was a Hastings Exhibitioner at Queen’s College, Oxford (1914-15).
He was killed at Trones Wood on 9th July. Robert’s body was eventually recovered and he is buried at Serre Road Cemetery No2. In common with at least three other members of the Regiment, Robert had originally had a battlefield grave in the south west corner of the wood, close to the point where Trones Alley had entered. His exhumation record from 1929 indicates Robert’s remains were identified with the help of his pipe. Kenneth MacArdle’s final contribution described Robert in his diary as “Calvert – a student of classics lately from St Bees in Cumberland, with bored looking wrinkles on his forehead and an inability to pronounce his “R”s which he substitutes with “W”s. He was meant for the Civil Service but makes a good enough soldier and is as comic as a clown with a tired resentful expression.” (Thanks to John Hartley) Robert Calvert had been an accomplished scholar, as a Hastings Exhibitioner at Queens College, Oxford. His parents were Robert and Fanny Calvert. A Major L Calvert finally arranged the inscription on Robert’s memorial “Remembered at his home, Burgh-by-Sands, Cumberland”.
In one of last letters to a school friend, Robert quoted Aes Triplex, by Robert Louis Stevenson “Does not life go down with a better grace foaming in full body over a precipice than miserably struggling to an end in sandy deltas?”
As suggested in St Bees Roll of Honour, this might stand as his epitaph.
via A Fire Watcher on the Town Hall in the Manchester Blitz
Town Hall extension (Rates Hall) 31 March 1938. Arthur Bell’s work place (C) Manchester Libraries
Town Hall Aerial View 1930. It was the left – east side of the building that was damaged in the Blitz © Manchester Libraries M80335
Town Hall in 1950 © Manchester Libraries
Bomb damage to Manchester Assizes Court from1940. © Manchester Libraries
City Architects Dept. Map of Bomb damage, showing damage to the Town Hall from and incendiary bomb on 23rd December 1940. © Manchester City Council
Buildings surrounding a bus station in Manchester burning after a German air raid on the night of 23 December 1940. © IWM (H 6322)
Alfred Ridge – Harlebeke New British Cemetery
Alf Ridge was an Old Contemptible of the 1st Battalion Manchester Regiment and was previously a member of the 6th Volunteer Battalion, before his service with the Regulars in India. He later served in the 12th and 11th Battalions during the Great War and was finally posted to the 18th (3rd Pals) Battalion.
Alf was wounded in the backside by a German granade during a local assault near Polderhoek Castle in Flanders. He was taken prisoner and treated in a German Field Hospital near Wevelgem.
Alf died from his wounds on this day in 1918. He was buried in Menen Wald German Cemetery and concentrated to Harelebeke New British Cemetery in the 1920s.
Alf was my grandfather’s cousin. My family and friends have visited his grave to pay our respects on a number of occasions. Alf is definitley not forgotten and I hope a few others will rememember him on the Centenary of his death.
For more photos and background see my original research. 1095 L/Cpl Alfred Ridge