Thomas SUTTON
Rank: Private
Number: 203043
Unit: 1/4th Battalion South Lancashire Regiment
Date of Death: 12 June 1917
Age:
Cemetery: Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, Nord, France

Nothing is known of Thomas' life, except that Regimental records published after the War note that he was born in Stockport and was living in the town when he enlisted into the army at Glossop.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission's records indicate Thomas was serving with the 8th Battalion when he died. Whilst this is possible, his service number is consistent with him serving with the 1/4th Battalion and this is confirmed by the Regimental records. His service number was not issued until after the beginning of 1917 suggesting he had not been at the front for very long when he died.

The 1/4th Battalion was a Pioneer unit. Pioneers were trained fighting soldiers who would take part in attacks, but their main role was in the construction of defences. In the days prior to his death, the men were working to improve the trench system after the successful attack that became known as the Battle of Messines. The Battalion War Diary does not report any casualties on 11 or 12 June, but does mention that 2 men were wounded on the 10th. Thomas was probably one of these men (and , possibly, had been wounded by enemy shellfire). He would have received treatment from the Battalion's own medical officer, although this would have been little more than first aid and he would then have been evacuated to one of the Casualty Clearing Stations (field hospital) based at Bailleul. There military surgeons would have done what they could to save his life but without success.

   
           
   
     
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