Today we commemorate the 101st anniversary of the death of local Bourne man, Ernest Robinson of the 6th Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment.
Ernest was born in the summer of 1889 in Bourne to John Robinson of Bourne, a bricklayer, and his wife Susannah Barnes, born in Billingborough.
Ernest was one of four children;
Sarah Elizabeth Barnes, 1876, Sleaford (Half sister)
Charles William Robinson, 1879, Bourne
Herbert Robinson, 1885, Bourne
Ernest Robinson, 1889, Bourne
The family lived at 31 Woodview Bourne and in 1911 Ernest is listed at home on census night and working as a Coal Porter at the gas works.
Ernest along with both his brothers joined the army during WW1 although Charles and Herbert both survived the war.
On Monday 31st August 1914, less that 4 weeks after war was declared, Ernest along with 14 other local men left Bourne station to join the Lincolnshire Regiment. The men were escorted to the station by the Bourne Brass band as well as lots of local residents.
Ernest joined the Lincolnshire Regiment, although his records are not available and it is assumed were destroyed in the warehouse fire in the Blitz during World War Two, we are not sure if he served with the 6th Lincolnshire regiment for his entire service life.
Ernest was awarded the 1915 star meaning that he saw action abroad in 1915. Other than this and the fact that he was listed in the 2nd Battalion on his effects register, not much is known about his exact movements.
The 6th Battalion had been sent straight from training in 1915 to Galipoli and then to Egypt before moving to France on the 1st July 1916. The battalion entered the Battle of the Somme on the 15th July near Fleurs.
The rest of 1916 and the early part of 1917 saw the 6th Battalion in the somme area. Early 1917 and the 6th battalion was first providing working parties in the St-Leger-Authie valley railway and then went into specialised training.
At some point whilst in France, Ernest was promoted to acting corporal and was posted to the 2nd Battalion Lincolnshire regiment.
The 2nd Battalion started April 1917 at Fins on the Dessart Wood outpost line. The Battalion was then relieved and went into divisional support in Equancourt Wood and then at Fins ready for an attack on Gouzencourt Wood on the 4th April.
Once the objectives were met the Battalion moved back to Fins, to be relieved on the 6th April and moving to Lieramont in divisional reserve.
From the 8th April the 2nd Battalion were in training, before moving to Nurlu on the 11th to provide working parties for road mending.
On the 16th April the Battalion moved into divisional support in trenches north east of Heudecourt. On the 17th they were in support trenches and working on them to create a defensive line.
The battalion relieved the Berkshire Regiment in the outpost line in front of Gonnelieu on the 18th. At 12 midnight 6 patrols attempted to enter Gonnelieu but were held up in the wire in front of the village and constantly fired upon by rifles & machine guns and were unable to press forward. This was carried out by A & C Companies. 1 officer killed, 2 officers wounded, 11 other ranks killed, 26 wounded, 7 missing.
The next day, 19th April, the battalion were in the outpost line, artillery and patrols were active on both sides.
Acting Corporal Ernest Robinson was killed in action on the 19th April 1917.
On Saturday 19th May 1917, the Grantham Journal reported that Corporal Ernest Robinson, attached to the Lincolns had been killed in action.
In memory of Acting Corporal Ernest Robinson, 8570, 6th Battalion, Lincolnshire Regiment who died on 19 April 1917
Remembered with honour, Arras Memorial and on the Bourne war memorial.
Rest in Peace