Sergeant James Huntly

Sergeant James Huntly, 1st/7th ( Territorial ) Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers. He was killed in action in Belgium, aged 23, on 26th April 1915 at St Julien during the Second Battle of Ypres. He had been born in Berwick and was the son of Mrs Margaret Huntly of Violet Terrace, Berwick. He is commemorated on the Menin Gate, Ypres, Flanders, Belgium. He fell in the Battalion’s first action only five days after landing on the Continent where heavy losses were suffered for no gain. Before the War he had worked for a local Electricity Company and was an enthusiastic member of the Berwick Parish Church choir. The Battalion had been rushed into Belgium to support a Canadian attack but with no preparation were caught in the open by heavy machine gun fire and suffered cover 400 casualties. A terrible baptism of fire. The photo shows the impressive Memorial raised to commemorate the 50th ( Northumbrian ) Division of which the Battalion was part until February 1918 when it was transferred to the 42nd ( East Lancashire ) Division as the Pioneer Battalion.  It was erected near the village of Weiltje in the Ypres Salient nearby where the above action was fought.

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