Remembrance – Anthony Ellingworth

Today we remember Private Anthony Ellingworth of Horbling who was killed in action on 10th July 1916, serving with the 10th Battalion Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment.


Anthony Ellingworth was born  in October 1887 and was baptised in Billingborough Church on the 23rd October 1887. His father Henry Ellingworth, who had worked as a Miller at Stow Mill, was born in Horbling in 1851 and married Sarah Harriss in the Sleaford District in 1875. Sarah was born in Walcott, near Billinghay, in 1852.

When Henry married Sarah in 1875 she already had one son, Mason Harris who was born in 1873.


The couple originally lived around Billinghay but had moved to High Street Billingborough by 1879, two years later the census gives Henry’s occupation as a journeyman Miller.


The census of 1891 finds the family in Horbling.  By now the family had expanded to 10 out of their eventual family of 11 children and Henry is now listed as a general labourer. Their children were:-


  • Mason Harris, 1873, Helpringham (half brother)
  • Herbert Henry Ellingworth, 1875, Billinghay
  • Minnie Ellingworth, 1877, Billinghay
  • William Ellingworth, 1879, Billingborough
  • Frank Ellingworth, 1881, Billingborough
  • Edith Ellingworth, 1882, Billingborough
  • Susannah Ellingworth, 1883, Billingborough
  • Sarah Elizabeth Ellingworth, 1885, Billingborough
  • Anthony Ellingworth, 1887, Billingborough
  • Thomas Ellingworth, 1889, Horbling
  • Harris Ellingworth, 1892, Horbling


In 1901 the family are still in Horbling, Henry working as an Agricultural Labourer and the thirteen year old Anthony is working as a Groom Boy, but this states ‘not domestic’ and therefore we are to assume that he is a groom on a farm.


Unfortunately in November 1909 Henry dies leaving the now 36 year old Sarah in Horbling with four children still at home in 1911. Each child is now grown up William working as a Farm Labourer, Elizabeth a Domestic, Thomas and Harris both working as Grooms.

Anthony by now has moved away from home, living in Grantham and has a job as a Railway Signalman. He is living with William Dunmore, a Railway Goods Guard, and his family at 56 Red Cross Street. Anthony is living in the household as a Boarder along with William’s wife, two school aged sons and their three year old daughter. As this is only a five room house we can imagine that life was very cramped for Anthony.


When war was declared it did not take the now 27 year old Anthony long to answer the call of duty and he enlisted in Bradford possibly in August of 1914.

Anthony’s service records have not been found and so using a calculation on the War gratuity payment that his mother Sarah received, it would indicate that he joined in the Month following the 11th August. This is also confirmed by a newspaper clipping saying that he enlisted soon after the declaration of war.


Research into Anthony’s war has to be made by piecing together surviving records such as Pension and Battalion Diaries. 60% of all WW1 service records were destroyed in a warehouse fire in the London Blitz during WW2.


On enlisting Anthony was  given the regimental number of 11733, and then at some point posted to the 10th Battalion Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment.

The 10th Battalion was formed in September 1914 as part of Kitchener’s Third Army. After being formed in Halifax they were then moved to Frensham for training as part of the 69th Brigade of the 23rd Division. Following on from Frensham they were moved to Aldershot where training continued.


In February 1915 they moved to Folkestone and then Bramshott before eventually being mobilised for war in August 1915.


If a soldier was posted for overseas service before the end of November 1915 he would receive the 1915 Star as a medal, unfortunately no record of this can be found with Anthony.

We have however found that there is a 1915 Star medal roll in the name of J W Ellingworth with the same 11733 regimental number, serving with the Duke of wellington’s. As there cannot be two regimental numbers in the same Battalion we have to assume that Anthony and J W Ellington are one in the same.

Newspaper articles after his death do say that he had been in France for something like 11 months and the letter from his Sergeant says that Anthony had been under him for 9 months .

Anthony also known as  J W Ellingworth to the Army for whatever reason, arrived in France on the 28th August 1915.


The Battalion Diary tells of their mobilisation from Bramshott. The Battalion received their orders on the 23rd August 1915, and they left Liphook Station in three parties starting on the 24th.

The first Party consisted of transport, machine Gun Section and 110 men of A company sailed to Harvre from Southampton. The remaining parties sailed to Boulogne from Folkestone on the 27th.


On arriving at 11:30pm in Boulogne the main party encamped for the night two and a half miles from the harbour. At 5am they were on the move again eventually arriving at Watten around 4pm, then marching to Nortleulinghem and their billets, once again meeting up with the transport section.


Here the Battalion undertook training consisting mainly of route marches and it was not until the 6th September that they marched out of Nortleulinghem for Wallon Cappell. The next day it was marching again and the destination of Outersteen. The 50mile march over two days took its toll especially on the first day when the 20 miles plus a mixture of hard roads and great heat was given as the cause for numerous men to fall out.


They were now in the Ballieul sector of the western front to receive instruction, eventually on the 13th September the men of C and D companies saw trenches for the first time and were there for 24 hours of instruction. A and B companies taking over the trenches then next day for their 24 hour instruction.


We refer again to the Battalion Diary to take us through Anthony’s and the Battalion’s first action of the war.


The first full tour of the trenches took place on the 15th September and now the Battalion had taken over the trenches occupying T52, T53, T54 and part of the Bois Grenier line from Moat Farm to the North east. Despite enemy sniping during the Battalion reported no casualties.


On the 16th the Battalion Diary reports: ‘ All quiet. Artillery duel over our heads. German’s retaliated on our trenches but did no damage – we suffered our 1st casualty no 13684 Pte Arthur Hargreaves A Company was sniped whilst cooking his dinner. He died instantaneously. In the evening the dumping ground was swept by machine gun fire by the enemy, during this time Lance Corporal 11611 R W Tillebrooke of A Company was shot through the head. Both casualties were buried in the Bois Grenier Church Yard, crosses were erected over their bodies.

During their first tour of the trenches a few other things were of note apart from the weather which was described as ‘all you could wish for’. On the night of the 17th an alarm was sent up that the Germans were attacking our trenches but no attack arrived.

On the 19th the trenches were passed over by hostile aircraft and anti-aircraft ammunition was wasted on them as none were hit.

That same night the Germans shouted across to our lines, but what they said was hardly audible as we are 400yards from their trenches.


A great bombardment was started from our side on the 21st September and during a period of enemy retaliation one of the two tanks in the water farm was punctured. This was serious it was now difficult to maintain a big supply of water.

During the that night working parties were using sand bags to surround the remaining water and then on the second day of the Bombardment the Battalion received orders that on the Wednesday they were to carry out an attack.


24th September 1915

At 4am all were in position and at 4.25am the bombardment commenced, all guns of all calibre and rifles were firing rapid. The Germans sent up many flares but did not retaliate until our bombardment ceased. They then sent several heavy shells and Whizz Bangs into us without however doing any harm to the trenches. During this affair  5 men were wounded some seriously. After this all was quiet for some hours at about 9am our guns commenced a steady bombardment of the enemy lines, doing much damage to their parapets but very little otherwise.

The enemy retaliated with heavy shells (4-5 howitzers and 77mil) which damaged our communication trenches in parts. During the morning we suffered a casualty No 11641 Pte A Flitcroft, D Company. He was shot through he head by a sniper. In the afternoon one man was wounded.

In the evening we got the order to cut gaps in our wire. Operational orders were given to the companies. In the evening hostile aircraft were active but owing to the wet and a stiff breeze did not remain in the air long. During the night all was quiet, working parties from each company went outside our parapet and cut openings in our wire, through which we could pass if the order to advance was given.


25th September 1915

4.25am – Punctually to the minute a most terrific bombardment by our artillery on the German lines commenced. This was the commencement of. Forward movement by the 3rd Army Corps which in its turn was a small part of a large advance by the French and English troops.

Almost simultaneously the enemy retaliated and a terrible artillery fire was kept up for several hours and did not quieten until about 2pm. For the most part, the German shells burst behind our firing trench

 and in consequence little material damage was done . The moral effect however was great. Our men were splendid, especially considering it was their first real action. During the morning we only suffered 14 casualties of which only 2 were serious, one proved fatal the man dying shortly after being admitted to the field ambulance.

At 4.30am the 8th Division crossed to the German trenches covered by smoke bombs and took over the trenches with no difficulty. They passed on, meanwhile the 69th Brigade of infantry 10th Duke of Wellingtons and 8th Yorkshire Regiment being in fire trenches kept up a bombardment with rifle fire which had the effect of drawing a great portion of the enemy fire from the troops which were actually attacking. During the morning, no orders were received to advance. The attacking battalions were relieved during the day which showed a very satisfactory advance by the allies.

The message with reference to the German movement afterwards from Lille gave misgivings of a heavy counter attack by the enemy. The men by now are completely worn out having been 12 nights in succession in the trenches, followed up by this terrible bombardment


26th September 1915

The morning of the 26th a Brigade order was received to the effect that the Battalion would be relieved

 by the 11th West Yorkshire and that we were to take over their billets about 1 1/2 miles north of Bois Grenier. During the day it was exceptionally quiet.

Reassuring Bulletins were received from HQ showing good progress on the part of the allies, the French as well as on the part of the British troops.

At 7.30pm reliefs commenced and by 11.30pm was complete. By 12.30pm the battalion was in its new billets, which consisted of small huts specifically built for the purpose.

During the last two days in the trenches, owing to the mud which was ankle deep, matters were rather uncomfortable for the men.


27th – 30th September 1915

Nothing to report. Good news continued to arrive from all sides. On the morning of the 30th C & D companies relieved the 8th Yorks in the Bois Grenier line. Weather colder and some rain.


This extract from the Diary shows that the Battalion had a fairly through first tour of the trenches, 12 nights in total and during this time they has received their first casualties, seen hostile aircraft, been subject to artillery and machine gun fire, been in support of a forward advance, been ankle deep in water and provided working parties to save their drinking water and cutting their own wire.


We  now move forward to Christmas 1915 and the Battalion were in billets at Rolanderie farm near Erquinghem to the south west of Armentieres.


24th December 1915

Still very rainy, to walk about is difficult, our heavy artillery has been at work all day, nothing further to report.

CHRISTMAS EVE – artillery duels in progress ours is sending some very heavy shells over. A plentiful supply of useful presents has arrived for the Battalion and all are making as merry as possible under the circumstances.


25th December 1915

The weather continues rainy. Artillery duels are still in progress our heavies being particularly active. A concert for the Battalion has been arranged for.

The above mentioned took place in a large barn close to billets which was prettily decorated. The programme which is attached was gone through and greatly enjoyed.

Our heavy artillery is very active again. The rain came on very heavily and continued through the night.



During 1916 the Battalion would be part of the relief of the French 17th Division between Boyaude l’Ersatz and the Souchez River and the German attack on Vimy Ridge, before arriving on the Somme for the Start of the Battle of the Somme with, the Battle for Albert, The Battle of Bazentin Ridge, The Battle of Pozieres, The Battle of Fleurs-Courcelette, The Battle of Morval, The Battle of Transloy and the Capture of Sars.


Unfortunately for Anthony he would not see many of those battles and to continue his story we move forward to the start of the Battle of the Somme once again told from the 10th Battalion Diary.


The battalion were in Enquin Les Mines on the 23rd June when they received orders to move the next day to The Somme by train, travelling by night via Lillers, Chocques, Calonne Ricoart, St Pol, Doullens, Vignacourt, through Amiens to Longueau. They detrained at 2.30pm.

The Battalion moved off again at 4am on the 25th passed through Amiens to Fremont where they took over billets at 9am. Eventually by the 30th June, the eve of the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the Battalion had moved on to Coisy and billets and bivouacs.


1st July 1916 – Coisy

Fine day . A little training being done, received orders from Brigade that the Battalion would be prepared to move at 6 hours notice. Definite orders soon followed and the Battalion moved off at 8pm.


2nd July 1916 – Baizieux

Arrived at Baizieux at 2am. The Battalion was rested by the best means at disposal about 7.30 received orders that the Battalion would move at 8.25pm to North West of Albert. The place was reached at midnight and Battalion was bivouacked in a field.


3rd July 1916 -Becourt

Received orders that the Battalion would move to Becourt Wood. We formed up at 11am and arrived at 4pm. There we stayed the night.


4th July 1916 – Becourt

Still at Becourt Wood. During the day there was a heavy downpour of rain and as a consequence things were not comfortable. During the evening orders were received to capture and consolidate certain positions.


5th July 1916 – Trenches

A copy of the operations carried out is attached marked ‘A’. This is the first time that the Battalion has been employed on an attack, and it is a great pleasure for me to say that all ranks worked magnificently.
 The Battalion is composed of the real material. The men worked well under the guidance of their officers. Many ddeds of valour were performed by both officers and men. Our casualties read as follows:-

4 officers killed, 2 officers wounded, 13 other ranks killed, 66 other ranks wounded

Discipline played an important part in the operations and the training of the past 10 months in this country has not been work in vain. There was much individual effort and intelligence shown. The battalion was relieved by the 8th Yorks Regiment, the Battalion returning to Becourt Wood – the relief complete at 10pm. The undermentioned officers were lost to the Battalion and are greatly missed – they were popular with all ranks.

Captain H M S Carpenter – Killed

Lieutenant A K Laverack – Killed

Lieutenant L Hammond – Killed

2nd Lieut W D Taylor – Killed

2nd Lieut C Snell – Wounded

2nd Lieut C G Meryweather – Wounded


6th July 1916 – Becourt

Fine day which was spent easily, the men cleaning themselves up and relating to each other their past recent experiences. At 7pm orders were received for the Battalion to move to a field for the night south of Albert. Arrived there at 8.30pm. A good square meal was provided for all ranks.


7th July to 8th July 1916 – Lozenge

Reveille 4am, received orders to issue two days’ iron rations to the Battalion. Moved off at 6am & marched via Becourt Wood to the captured trenches on the left of Lozenge Wood.

Rain began to fall heavily at 9am and continued throughout the day. The 24th infantry brigade attacked Horse Shoe Trench and Shelter Alley. About 8pm the Battalion moved to the dump at Lozenge Wood where they were at once instructed to dig themselves in. We sustained a few casualties during the process.


9th July 1916 – Trenches

Artillery is moving forward. In the late evening C&D Companies were fitted up with all requirements for an attack and they were accompanied by about 50 of the Royal Engineers and proceeded to the front line system of defences, to the left rear of Peak’s Wood. A & B Companies moved to the right of Sunken Road and dug themselves in whilst HQ proceeded to the German Bakery on the left of the same wood. This bakery is a substantial construction and is about 20 feet below the surface and has two tunnel staircases. It is at present being used by our own men as an advanced dressing station. It is quite proof against shell fire. Beyone heavy artillery fire there is nothing to report.


10th July 1916 – Contalmaison

About 6pm A & B Companies moved up to the trenches occupied by C & D Companies and just at this point the enemy placed a heavy barrage on the ridge and heavily shelled the now crowded trenches causing many casualties. C & D Companies advanced on Contalmaison and were followed later by A & B Companies as will be seen in the attached copy of operations marked ‘B’ the attack on the village by the 69th Brigade was a great success. Our HQ assisted by a carrying party of the Duke of Lancaster’s Own carried stores, ammunition, bombs etc. straight by the road to Contalmaison and assisted in the consolidation of the captured positions. A large quantity of 4.2 shells and stores of other descriptions were found in dug-outs, they having been abandoned by the enemy in his flight. Our artillery kept up a continuous barrage and we held the position.


11th July 1916

About 3am our machine guns were in action against a small party of the enemy, who it is thought were coming to surrender. Our men did not leave anything to chance, as the light was bad their intention could only be assumed. They however returned. Judging by the state of the village, the enemy did not intend to leave this position and was probably under the impression that it was impregnable. The artillery worked magnificently. They were called upon to make a great effort and responded to it. It is impossible to speak too highly of the that branch of the service. The Battalion moved into a field North West of Albert and bivouacked for the night.


Private Anthony Ellingworth of the 10th battalion Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment was killed in action on the 10th July during the attack on Contalmaison.



Grantham Journal Saturday 19th August 1916
of Horbling
Lance-Corpl. Anthony Ellingworth, the fifth son of the late Mr. Henry and Mrs. Ellingworth, of Horbling, Folkingham, was killed in action during the great advance at the beginning of July.  Lanc-Corpl. Ellingworth enlisted in the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment soon after the declaration of war, and had been our in France for something like eleven months.  during that time, he had been in many engagements, and had, luckily come out unscathed.  The news of his death will be received in the village with the profoundest regret.  His mother has received a sympathetic letter from Sergt. B. McAvan, of her son’s regiment.  He states- “He was the best lad in the Company, and all the boys send you their deepest sympathy in your trouble.  He was loved by everyone, because he was such a good, quiet lad, and it’s a pity to be losing such fine young fellows.  I have had him under me this last nine months, so I know well enough.”



Sgt Brian McAvan was awarded the Military Medal during  July 1916 but he would himself be killed in action on the 3rd May 1917.



Commonwealth War Graves Commission:

  • In memory of Private Anthony Ellingworth, 11733, 10th Bn., Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment) who died on 10 July 1916. Remembered with honour, Thiepval Memorial


Anthony Ellingworth is also commemorated on the Roll of Honour in St Andrew’s Church Horbling Lincolnshire.

Remembrance – Captain Allison Gould Smith

Yesterday we remembered Horbling man, Allison Gould Smith, who died on the 18th April 1918 whilst serving with the 7th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire regiment.

Allison was born in the winter of 1890, on December 3rd, in Horbling to George Smith, a solicitor born in Horbling in 1859 and his wife Helen Phyllis Allison, born in Louth in 1861.

The couple were married in Louth in 1888 making their home in Horbling. Between 1889 and 1900 the couple had 4 children :-

* George Henry Gould Smith, 1889, Horbling
* Allison Gould Smith, 1890, Horbling
* Helen Phyllis Gould Smith, 1892, Horbling
* Francis Gould Smith, 1900, Horbling

On the night of the 1891 census we find a four month old Allison living with his parents in Horbling and his older brother George. His father is a solicitor and is listed as an employer.

Ten years later in 1901 we again find them in Horbling, this time the house is now identified as being 2 houses away from Sunnyside. George and Helen now have 2 sons and a daughter and also in the household we have a cook, parlour maid and a nurse. George is a solicitor and still an employer.

If we jump on another 10 years to 1911, living at 28 Dorset Road in Bexhill we can see that a retired school master by the name of John Neve Allison aged 34 a single man that has two nephew’s with him. George and Allison are in his household along with a housekeeper, Emma Lidgand from Binbrook Lincolnshire. The two Smith brothers are now 22 and 20 and have both given their occupation as students. Looking once again at the surname of Allison, we now confirm that this is the reason for Allison’s unusual christian name.

On later CWGC paperwork we find that Allison Smith was educated at both Winchester College and also Magdalene College, Cambridge.

We do not have access to the official military records for Allison but, as with 60% of all WW1 records, it is most likely that they were destroyed in a warehouse fire in he blitz. Therefore the only way to piece together his military history is from single entries in other related military documents.

Allison’s Medal card shows that Pte Smith attended Officer Training Corps. Possibly starting or ending on the 11th September 1914 and then upon passing out as 2/Lieut, Smith is listed as serving with the 7th Battalion Loyal North Lancs, eventually disembarking in France on the 17th July 1915.

It is most likely that he trained and then was posted immediately to the 7th Battalion.

On the 23rd June 1915 the 7th Battalion, as part of the 19th (Western) Division, was inspected by King George V at Tidworth. Advance parties then left for France on the 11th July.

The 7th Battalion were placed on trains to Folkestone on the 17th July at 3.55pm and after arriving embarked at 8.55pm. They arrived in Boulogne at 11pm and were marched 2 miles into the rest camp.

For the next week they spent most of their time training and daily route marching from the Calais area, spending time at Watten, Moulle, Walton Chapel on their way.
In Patit Courdois on the 26th, after a route march of 6 miles. General Sir Douglas Haig visited the Bn HQ at 3.15pm.
By the end of the month, as well as the daily route marches, they had also received instructions in the use of entrenching tools and the fitting of smoke hoods.
By the night of the 30th they were in Paradis and were due to be inspected by the Corps Commander on the 1st August. The final note in the Battalion Diary for July notes “Promotions for Officers”

We are lucky that Allison is an officer and therefore his name appears in the list of officers in the Appendix of the July diary while at Tidworth, he is listed as a 2/Lieut.

The whole of August was spent in trying camps at Paradis, Vielle Chapelle and Le Sart. During this time the officers attended lectures and the men were trained in all kinds of equipment, trench and hand motors, machine guns, bombing, trench warfare etc. At the end of August the Battalion became part of the army reserves.

September 1915 saw the battalion art in Les Lobes, behind the lines providing working parties for filing sandbags, laying telephone wires and digging communications trenches. The Battalion reported their first casualties on the 8th September when 4 men from D company, who had been part of the working parties attached to the Royal Engineers were report injured when returning from their work.
The first time the battalion had been called upon to provide troops for a defensive line was on the 13th September when 4 officers and 138 other ranks were sent forward.
The 22nd September saw the battalion in their first action when they were in support for a planned attack and our artillery had started a continual bombardment, ti lasted until the 24th the the Battalion marched back into reserve positions. By the 28th the Battalion saw their first time in the front line.

From the 25th September the Battalion were now firmly involved in the Battle for Loos, positioned between Bethune and Loos, at Les Lobes in the Orchard salient and had witnessed their first fighting and gas attacks.

In the fighting strength appendices to the diaries in September, Allison Smith is now listed as a Lieutenant.

During October we find that Lieut Allison Smith appears on the sick list on the second week and is sent to hospital at St Venant, he rejoins the Battalion around the 19th November. The Battalion at this point are still in a similar positions.

The Battalion saw the year out in and out of the same positions. The war was was now one of holding ground, defending positions and patrolling as no major offensives would be planned during the winters.

By March the Battalion had moved along he sector a little and were now around Neuve-Chapelle.

Eventually the Battalion was moved out of the sector and down to Amiens and started training for probably the next big push.
The only thing to note during all the training in May 1916 was that Captain Cammack, 2/Lieut Ford + 4 NCOs were wounded as a result of a bomb accident during training.

The training went on all through June and on the 1st July the battalion went into intermediate line waiting to be given orders to attack Ovillers fro the N.W. by 4.45pm this attack was called off and the Battalion went into Brigade reserve trenches until dawn on the 2nd. There were about 25 casualties on the day, but considering this was the first day of the Battle of the somme, the Battalion suffered less than most.

The Battalion then saw action between Albert and Poziers o the next day and on to La Boiselle for their first day of heaving fighting during the Somme offensive. By the 5th July the Battalion were in the thick of the fighting an on this day Lieutenant Wilkinson held up an enemy advance with a single machine gun in a trench and was recommended for a V.C. Unfortunately he was killed in action the 10th and the request went in posthumously from the GOC 19th Division.

For the first 12 days of the Somme offensive the Battalion had lost 7 officers and 164 other ranks.
Next the Battalion diary sees them in some infamous places on the Somme including Bazentin Le petit, Contalmaison, Martinpuch and Memetz Wood. To tell the full story would need a very long book and suffice to say that the Battalion Diary was full of heroic actions performed.

At the end of July the Battalion were withdrawn from the line and after 3 day regrouping, refitting etc, they eventually were moved and arrived in Bailleul and into shelters at Kemmel on the 7th August. The entrainment orders show he Battalion to only have 15 officers and 629 men at this point.
They spent the rest of the month providing working parties in the support trenches and reserve lines and when not active, retraining around the camps of Kemmel and then on to Ploegsteert for early September.

By the 6th October they were back in the sector of the Somme where they remained until being pulled out for retraining near St Omer in March 1917.

In April they moved into the sector S.W. of Ypres near Sent-Elooi, once again being trained, no doubt for another major offensive, whilst still providing working parties and then starting to take over the line again from the 18th April. This kept up through May and the Battalion were heading into the next major offensive which was the Battle of Messines Ridge that started on the 7th June.
The 19th Division and the 7th Battalion played their part and all objectives were met by 9.30am, the initial mines along the ridge blown at 3.10am.
By mid June the Battalion were back at the camps near Kemmel, once again providing working parties and training.

July was similar with the Battalion around Locre at first practicing for the next big push, but them moving back into line near Zillebeke, ready for what was going to be on the 31st July, the first day of 3rd Ypres, known as the Battle of Passchendaele.
During the Battle of Ypres, the Battalion fought at Menin Road Ridge, Polygon Wood, Broodseinde, where they were in the line at Hill 60, following this it was back into the Kemmel sector before on the 11th November being taken back from the front to La Belle Hotesse Camp between St Omer and Hazebrouck.

The Battalion were there for almost one month before on the 6th December entraining for Bailleul and marching to Etricourt. Here they went back into the front line against the Hindenburg support line.
Christmas Day was spent in support in Ribecourt before once again going into the trenches on Boxing Day.

The London gazette on the 28th December 1917 reported. The King has been graciously pleased to approve the reward of the military cross for distimguised service in the field to Temporary Captain Allison Gould Smith of the Lloyal North Lancashire Regiment.

And on the 1st January the London gazette reported that, Temporary Captain Allison Gould Smith listed in the New Years honours list. Normally if the award comes as part of he New Years honours lists then no separate citation for the medal award is listed in the London gazette.

At the end of January the Battalion Diary ends. It is known that Captain Smith’s medal card also mentions the 1st Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, although it does not give a date.

Between the 10th and the 18th of February the Battalion received a draft of 160 other Ranks from the 7th loyal North Lancashire Regiment and at this time were just to the south of Poelcappelle.

They remained in the sector until the 7th April when they were pulled back out of the line and ack to Elverdinge between Ypres and Poperinge and then marched to Lapugnoy.
By the 15th April they had arrived by buses into Houchin, Marched to Beuvry and ended up billeted in cellars there for three days of occupation. 10 casualties were sustained – chiefly of a light nature.

On the 15th April, the Battalion relieved the 1st Glosters in the defences of Le Preol, the relief completed by 10:30pm.
The Battalion Diary for the 16th+17th says; The next day the Battalion moved forward into the sector La Bassee Canal northwards to A.14.a.95.75. Taking over from the 2/5 Lancashire Fusiliers – Disposition of Companies from right to left. C-B-A – D Company in support – Bn HQ at A.14.a.90.80. The day was dull and relief was carried out in daylight – Only on e casualty being sustained. Relief Completed at 3.55pm. Day generally quiet.

18th April – In the Line
At 4.15am the enemy commenced to bombard the whole of the Divisional front. The garage became intense and at 8.10 the enemy attacked from the North. Filtering into our trenches under causes of the high ground at Givenchy. He succeeded in reaching and occupying the main line of resistance before counter measures could be taken. Vigerous counter attacks by C&D Companies Eventually succeeded in ejecting the enemy from the main line and by 11am he was only holding a few isolated parts of our out post line.

19th April – Beyond a certain amount of sniping the day was fairly quiet.

21st April – 23rd April 1918
Remainder of the period was fairly quiet and work was concentrated on improving the defensive system. The Battalion relieved on the night of the 23/24th by the 1/4 King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment and moved back by bus from. Annequin to Houchin. Relief completed without incident at 1.30am,

Casualties during the period were 2/Lieut King and Petit killed, Captain Base MC, Captain Jefferys, 2/Lieut Bell 2/Lieut Mallett Lieut Allen wounded, Captain Smith MC Lt Gladding 2/Lieuts Smith, Claridge and Whitehead missing. 46 other ranks killed, 105 other ranks wounded and 189 other ranks missing.

As we can see from the diary captain Allison Smith went missing during this period in the front line. A later report of the 29th January 1919 has the daily casualty lists as the following – Reported Missing, since ascertained mortally wounded after being taken prisoner, died on the same day. Report date 18th April 1918.

Reported in the Lincolnshire Echo Wednesday 1st May 1918
* LOCAL OFFICER MISSING – We regret to learn that Captain A. G. Smith (Lancashire Fusiliers), second son of Mr. George Smith, solicitor, Horbling is reported “missing.” It is known that he was engaged in recent severe fighting and that he and a small detachment of men were cut off from the main body, two only remaining. Further news of this valiant young officer is anxiously awaited.

The next official document we can find is on the 7th July 1919, The Soldier’s effects register reports that Lt A G Smith had effects totalling £201 3/-

Two months later Probate records report – Smith, Allison Gould of Horbling, Folkingham, Lincolnshire died 18th April 1918 at or near Givenchy France. The administration of the estate was carried out in London on 6th September 1919 to George Smith, Solicitor. Effects £1120 14/-

CWGC – In memory of Captain Allison Gould Smith, MC, 7th Bn., The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment who died on 18 April 1918 Age 27. Son of George and Helen Phyllis Smith, of Horbling, Billingborough, Lincs. Educated at Winchester College and Magdalene College, Cambridge. Remembered with honour, Loos Memorial

18th April 1918

Thursday 18th April 1918


Today we learn of the sad death of Captain Allison Gould Smith of Horbling who died today serving his country with the 7th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment.

He will be missed by all in the village, his sacrifice will not be forgotten. Our condolences have been sent to George and Helen Smith, his paremts, on this sad occasion.