Private George Robertson

Private George Robertson, 6th ( Service ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action in France on 25th September 1915, aged 30 on the first day of the Battle of Loos. He had been born in St Boswells and was the son of the late James and Agnes Robertson of St Boswells. He was was the brother of Henry Robertson of Bonny View, St Boswells and he was named legatee.  He is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Dud Corner, Loos, France. He fell in the disastrous assault on the village of Haisnes which got no further than ” Madagascar Trench “. No gains were made and the Battalion lost 11 Officers and 358 Other Ranks killed or missing and 8 Officers and 272 Other Ranks wounded or gassed. No Officer escaped unscathed. Sheer bravery was not enough against machine guns and uncut barbed wire. His late father, James Robertson, had been a mason in St Boswells and George was employed as a stonemason when he enlisted in 1914. The first picture shows Scots troops marching up to the line at Loos and the second shows an actual attack with the troops disappearing into ghostly clouds of smoke and gas. This was the first time in the War that the British Army had used gas. The third shows the village of Loos after capture and the artist’s nightmarish illustration depicts an attack at Loos with the troops wearing their gas hoods and using primitive grenades.

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