Joseph was the eldest son of Harry and Mary Parrott. In 1901, the family home was at 1 Briscoe Street, Stockport and Harry was earning his living as a carter for a coal merchant. Also at home were Lucy (then 6), Charles (1) and Jessie (3 months). A little extra income came from two boarders. When the Census was taken, three year old Joseph was staying at the home of his grandmother, Sarah Parrott, at 4 Dialstone Road, Heaviley. It's not known if he was living there or had just gone to visit.
When War broke out in 1914, Joseph was not quick to enlist but, when he did join up, he joined one of the Territorial battalions of the Cheshire Regiment. His service number, 5227, suggests this was towards the end of 1916. However, his medal entitlement records, at the National Archives, confirm he never served abroad with the Regiment and appears to have been transferred to the King's (Liverpool) Regiment when he finished his training. He was given a new number - 79100. At some later point, he was transferred again. This time he moved to the Labour Corps (service number 54905). This was probably during a lengthy period when his health made him unsuitable for the rigours of trench warfare. He will still have been fit to undertake labouring duties, such as road building, in the rear areas.
In the spring of 1918, the Germans launched a series of offensives and the British losses were substantial. There was a desperate need for fighting men and this was, probably, when Joseph was returned to the trenches as a Fusilier. For the first couple of weeks of July 1918, Joseph and his mates were in the reserve area undertaking training. On the 2nd, they were inspected by His Royal Highness, the Duke of Connaught. Until this time, the Battalion had been one of several Garrison Guard units performing guard duties away from the front line but it had been retrained and redesignated as a fighting unit.
On the night of the 18th/19th they went into the front line for the first time at a position known as Tiflis House, near the French town of Hazebrouck. On the first day in the trenches, five men, including Joseph, were killed, most probably by shellfire.