Frederick HAUGHTON
Rank: Acting Sergeant
Number: 42047
Unit: 1st Battalion SOUTH WALES BORDERSWB (on mem CHES)
Date of Death: 8 September 1916
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France

Very little is known about Frederick. He was born in the Stockport and his mother and sister, Alice, lived at 47 Charles Street. A regular soldier serving with the 2nd Battalion, Cheshire Regiment (service number 9384), Frederick was in India when War broke out in August 1914. It took some weeks for a replacement unit to arrive to take over the garrison duties at Jubbelpore, the men arrived back in Devonport on Christmas Eve. After a short leave, they left again, for France, on 16 January.

At some point, he was transferred to the Borderers. This was probably after recovering from a wound or a lengthy period of sickness. When he was fit enough to return to duty, they will have been in greater need of replacement troops, perhaps in particular, experienced "old soldiers". His service papers no longer survive at the National Archives so it cannot be known exactly when the transfer occurred. However, the Borderers had been in action at the Battle of the Somme since the middle of July and it is very possible that he had not been with them for long before he was killed.

One of the early objectives had been the German strongpoint in High Wood, in the south of the battlefield. It was still in German hands in September, in spite of repeated attack to try and dislodge them. On the 8th, orders were issued for another attack. It would be led by battalions of the Gloucestershire and Welsh Regiments. Frederick and his comrades would be in close support, ready to reinforce the other two. After several hours "softening up" of the German trenches, the infantry attacked at 6pm. "A", "C" and "D" Companies of the Borderers followed behind across No Man's Land. "B" stayed behind to man the British front line. The attack was again a failure and, by midnight, those that had managed to retreat were back in the British trenches. 105 Borderers had become casualties - dead, wounded or missing. Frederick was amongst those missing and had probably been killed crossing No Man's Land. His body was never found and identified.

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