Rank: Private
Number: 119758
Unit: 200th Company LABOUR CORPS
Date of Death: 23 December 1917
Cemetery: Peronne Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France

Nothing is known about John's life except that Corps records published after the War indicate he had been born in Stockport and was living in the town when he enlisted into the army at Rochdale. The same records indicate he originally joined the Lancashire Fusiliers (service number 33532). If this is correct, then he never served abroard on active service with the Fusiliers as this service is not mentioned on his medal entitlement records at the National Archives. His first recorded unit is the 8th Battalion, King's Own (Royal Lancaster) Regiment (service number 32780). It is probable that he was transferred to the King's Own after training.

At some later point, he was transferred to the Labour Corps. The Corps was formed at the beginning of 1917 mainly from men deemed unfit for the rigours of fighting in the front line trenches but still very capable of undertaking vital manual work in the reserve areas. They would undertake tasks such as road building, grave digging, unloading ships, etc. This work would often be carried out not far behind the front line and, certainly, within range of enemy artillery and, in consequence, casualties were not uncommon.

Unlike the fighting battalions, there are now no records of the day to day activities of the Corps' Companies but it is known that John was "killed in action".

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