Private Robert Notman

Private Robert Notman, 43rd Battalion ( Cameron Highlanders of Canada ) Canadian Infantry. He was killed in action, aged 24, in Belgium on the 26th October 1917 during the Third Battle of Ypres. He had been born in Peebles in 1892 as Robert Lyle Tait and was the son of Hannah Tait Notman of North Berwick and the step son of William Notman of Gamekeepers Cottage, The Haining, Selkirk. He had emigrated to Canada and was farming in Manitoba as well as serving in the local Militia, the 69th Cameron Highlanders of Canada. He enlisted in Winnipeg in July 1916 and went to France in April 1917 with the 174th Battalion where he was posted to the 43rd Battalion. He is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Flanders, Belgium. He fell in the fierce fighting for Passchendaele Ridge where Lieutenant Shankland won the Victoria Cross for his actions on that day for organising the men and repelling heavy German counter attacks. The photos show the atrocious battlefield conditions. The incessant shelling had shattered the fragile Flanders drainage systems.

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