Lance Corporal Thomas Strother

Lance Corporal Thomas Strother, 1st/7th ( Territorial ) Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers. He was killed in action in France on 15th September 1916 during the Battle of the Somme and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France. He fell in an attack on German positions near High Wood. Two tanks led the attack and the troops reached the second objective in ” Sunken Lane” before being halted by Captain Merivale who realised his flanks were in the air and consolidated the position which then came under an enemy bombardment. This attack was as always costly with 3 Officers and 40 Other Ranks killed and 7 Officers and 219 Other Ranks Wounded. In addition 74 Other Ranks were posted missing. ( In Great War speak “missing” usually meant dead ). The C.W.G.C. site lists his rank as Private. The photos show the state of the ground in the autumnal rains. The colour photo shows the impressive Memorial raised to the 50th ( Northumbrian ) Division of which the Battalion was part until February 1918 when it was transferred to the 42nh ) East Lancashire ) Division as the Pioneer Battalion. It was erected at Weiltje in the Ypres Salient where on 26th April 1915 the Division had fought its first action of the War at St Julien only days after landing on the Continent. The other photos show troops on the Somme with the colour image depicting a peaceful Somme today with ” no gas, no barbed wire, no guns firing now”.

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