Private William Pringle

Private William Drysdale Pringle, Field Coy. Royal Engineers. ( C.W.G.C. site has only one entry for this soldier )  25th ( 2nd Tyneside Irish ) Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers. He was killed in action on the First Day of the Battle of the Somme on 1st July 1916 and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France. He had been born in Berwick-upon-Tweed and had enlisted in Wooler. The 25th Battalion along with its sister Battalions 24th, 26th and 27th formed the 103rd Brigade of the 34th Division attacked from the Tara-Usna Line towards the fortified village of Contalmaison. In this advance very heavy casualties were suffered with the Brigade losing 22 Officers and 574 Other Ranks killed and 53 Officers and 1522 Other Ranks wounded. 25th Battalion alone had 4 Officers and 140 Other Ranks killed and 14 Officers and 351 Other Ranks wounded. 1st July 1916 the “Big Push”  between Gommecourt in the North  to Montauban in the South cost the British Army 57,000 casualties of which 19,000 were fatal. The photo shows troops advancing over a wide no mans land with practically no cover into a hail of machine gun fire.

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