Peter KELLY
Rank: Private
Number: 3129
Unit: 9th Battalion LANCASHIRE FUSILIERS
Date of Death: 27 November 1915
Age: 21 or 23
Cemetery: Helles Memorial

It has not been possible to establish Peter's age. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records it as 21, whilst the local newspaper, reporting his death, has it as 23. It is such a common name that it cannot be separately verified in records of births.

It is known that Peter was born in Failsworth and was living there when he enlisted into the army at Bury. His mother is thought to have been quite recently widowed and perhaps had moved back to her home town of Stockport by 1915. She was living at 17 Eryngo Street. She later remarried, becoming Mrs Crosdale and, in the 1920s, was living at 7 Greystokes Street.

Peter had enlisted into the army very soon after War was declared in August 1914 leaving his job in Manchester as a dyer. He went overseas with the newly formed Battalion in the summer of 1915.  

On 27 November 1915, the Fusiliers were in reserve positions at Suvla Bay, in the north of the Gallipoli peninsula. The Battalion's War Diary records that a "severe storm swept over Suvla Bay. Heavy fall of rain, followed by a hard frost. All men's dug-outs were flooded, owing to the general lack of shelter, very trying time ensued for all ranks but total evacuated sick as a result of the storm was comparatively small - 1 officer and 63 Other Ranks."

The Diary does not mention that Peter and another man, Fred Wild, both died that day. Regimental records published after the War stated they "died" - a designation usually indicating a death unconnected with actual combat (as opposed to "killed in action" or "died of wounds"). The local newspaper, reporting Peter's death said that he had been killed accidentally. Whilst it will now be impossible to establish what happened, it seems likely that the heavy rainfall was a contributory cause. Perhaps their dug-out collapsed in the flooding or they drowned somehow.

   
           
   
     
© 2006. Design and Layout are the property of Ihelm Enterprises Limited and cannot be reproduced without express permission.
 
Enter Search Phrase Here:(search may take up to 30 seconds) 
 
Close Search Window