Benjamin MILLER
Rank: Private
Number: 210351
Unit: 51st Graduated Battalion WEST YORKSHIRE REGIMENT
Date of Death: 29 November 1918
Age: 18
Cemetery: Christ Church, Ashton under Lyne

Benjamin was one of the many young men who died as a result of the worldwide pandemic of influenza in the autumn of 1918. It is estimated that some 25 million fell victim. In an age before antibiotics, the transition from flu to pneumonia often could not be prevented. He had been born in Ashton under Lyne and would be buried there, near his mother, on Wednesday 4 December.

The family had moved to Marple when Benjamin was still a baby, living at 6 Church Lane. They had worshipped at the local Congregational Church. He had attended Albert Day School and had furthered his education by attending the Sunday School run by the Church. He had won a Whitworth Scholarship when he was 12 and attended Stockport Secodnary School until he was 16. Benjamin then went to become an apprentice electrician at Broadbents in Huddersfield. Whilst studying at the local Techincial Institute he won the highest prize for his work, valued at £10 (worth over £300 at 2005 values). He was a member of his trade union - the AEU.

Benjamin had been conscripted into the army when he became 18 and was still in training at Worksop. With the War over, Broadbents had already applied for him to be released from the military and be allowed to return to their employment. He fell ill and died before any decision was taken.

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