Thomas HARLOCK
Rank: Private
Number: 17776
Unit: 6th Battalion King’s Own (Royal Lancaster) Regiment
Date of Death: 20 October 1915
Age: 35
Cemetery: Alexandria (Chatby) Military & War Cemetery, Egypt

Thomas was born in the Droylsden area in the late spring of 1880. Over 20 years later, when the National Census was taken, he was living with his widowed mother, Priscilla, and his brother, John, at 16 Boodle Street, Ashton-under-Lyne.

In 1902, he married Sarah Normanton at St James' Church, Ashton and, very shortly afterwards, their first child, Harold, was born. The family later moved to live at 19 Emperor Street, Portwood, Stockport and Thomas found work as a warehouseman at Pear Mill (the building still exists in Stockport and is home to a number of businesses). Thomas and Priscilla would have another four children - John (in 1905), Arthur (1907), Marjorie (1911) and Lily (1912). 1911 would be a year of double celebration as the children's Uncle John got married that year.

Thomas enlisted into the army on 4 September 1914, a month after war was declared. He joined the 11th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment but, after several months, he was discharged as being medically unfit, without seeing overseas service. In 1915, he re-enlisted; this time joining the King's Own and went overseas to Gallipoli on 26 July. The Battalion had actually left at the beginning of the month and Thomas must have followed as part of a group of reinforcements.

Conditions on the Peninsula for the troops almost defy description. The nature of the terrain and the closeness of the opposing trenches meant that men, who had been killed in No Man's Land, had to be left there. It was simply too dangerous to try to recover and bury the bodies. Flies and vermin flourished in the heat and disease spread in epidemic proportions. Thomas was one of many to fall victim to typhoid. He was evacuated from Gallipoli to hospital in Egypt, where he died.

   
           
   
     
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