Ernest Henry TRUST
Rank: Private
Number: 17801
Unit: 8th Battalion South Lancashire Regiment
Date of Death: 29 August 1916
Age: 20
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France

Anthony and Leah Trust are thought to have met and married in the Merseyside area and their first child, Amy, had been born in Crosby. By the mid 1890s, they had moved to Marple, where Ernest was born. In 1901, the family was living at Lock Terrace, where Anthony earned his living as a gardener, They later moved to 20 East Vale.

Ernest had added to his state education by attending All Saints' Church Sunday School. Until he enlisted into the army in early 1915, he worked for the Grand Central Railway Ltd at the Company's stores' department at Gorton. After training , Ernest left Britain on 1 January 1916 to join his Battalion in France.

Ernest's first experience of "going over the top" in a major attack will have been on 3 July 1916, on the third day of the Battle of the Somme.  Between then and late August, he and his comrades had spent periods in reserve, alternating with tours of duty in the front line. In this part of the battlefield, little progress had been made and objectives for the first day were still in German hands.

One of the most heavily defended sections was the "Leipzig Salient". An attack, by other battalions, had captured part of the Salient known as the Hindenburg Trench and, on 28 August, the South Lancashires received orders to make a fresh attack to capture the remaining part so the trench. Again, it was a failure and the men were driven back by heavy fire.

The next day, Ernest was killed by a direct hit from a German shell landing on "C" Company's HQ dug-out. Five men were killed and several more wounded. Ernest has no known grave and it is possible that the expression "blown to bits" may be entirely correct in his case.

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