Arthur RATCLIFF(E)
Rank: Private
Number: O/7840
Unit: ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS
Date of Death: 25 January 1918
Age: 27
Cemetery: “Normandy” Memorial, Ste. Marie Cemetery, Le Havre , France

Arthur’s surname is wrongly spelled on the Stockport Memorial as the more common Ratcliffe. However, all official sources spell it as Ratcliff.

His parents, Tom Ratcliff and Ada McNeill, married at St Matthew’s Church, Stockport and it’s thought he was their only child. When the Census was taken in 1901, the family was living at 72 Carmichael Street. Tom earned his living as a life insurance agent.

Before the War, Arthur had worked for the Cheshire Lines Committee railway company as a clerk at Stockport Station. He enlisted into the army at Stockport and was assigned to the Army Ordnance Corps. The Corps was responsible for the provision of munitions and the maintenance of weaponry but it is not known what was Arthur’s exact job.

He had been home on leave earlier in January and was returning to duty. The SS Normandy was a troop and supply ship of just over 600 tons, which sailed between Southampton and Le Havre. She was eight miles north east of Cap de La Hague when she was torpedoed by German submarine U90 and sank. 14 merchant marine sailors, 3 Royal Navy men and 13 soldier passengers died. 13 men were rescued.

After the War, Mr & Mrs Ratcliff were known to be living at 120 Moorland Road, Stockport.

   
           
   
     
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