Arthur CLARKE
Rank: Private
Number: 24203
Unit: 8th Battalion CHESHIRE REGIMENT
Date of Death: 20 May 1916
Age: 21
Cemetery: Amara War Cemetery, Iraq

Arthur was born in Stockport and lived at 20 Angel Street. Until he volunteered for the army, he was working for the London and North Western Railway Ltd at Stockport. The local newspaper reported that he worked as platelayer, but he is commemorated on the Company's Roll of Honour as a "parcel porter". His service number indicates he enlisted between December 1914 and April 1915.

Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq) was part of the Turkish Ottoman empire and an ally of Germany. Then as now, Britain relied heavily on oil from the area. When war broke out in August 1914, British troops were quickly sent to the area to protect its interests by occupying the oilfields and pipeline near Basra. 

Conditions for the men were appalling. Extremes of temperature (120 degrees F was common); arid desert and regular flooding; flies, mosquitoes and other vermin: all led to very high levels of sickness and death through disease. Under these conditions, units fell short of officers and men, and all too often the reinforcements were half-trained and ill-equipped. Medical arrangements were quite shocking, with wounded men spending up to two weeks on boats before reaching any kind of hospital.

Arthur was one of many who lost his life through illness and not combat. He died, in hospital,of cholera.

   
           
   
     
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