Private Thomas McDougall

Private Thomas Soulsby McDougall, 1st/7th ( Territorial ) Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers. He was killed in action in Belgium on 26th October 1917 during the Third Battle of Ypres and is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Zonnebeke, Flanders, Belgium. He had been born in Blyth, Northumberland and had enlisted there. He fell in the attack on German positions near ” Aden Point ” which were taken but had to be given up in the face of heavy casualties and strong German counter attacks. 10 Officers and 43 Other Ranks were killed with 1 Officer and 150 Other Ranks wounded. In addition another 53 Other Ranks were missing. ( In Great War parlance ” missing ” usually meant  ” killed ” especially if the attack had not been successful ). The photographs show the dire conditions on the battlefield brought about by the fragile Flanders drainage system being shattered by the incessant shelling. The colour photo shows the impressive Memorial raised to commemorate the 50th ( Northumbrian Division ) of which the Battalion was part until February 1918. It was erected near the village of Welitje in the Ypres Salient near to where the Division had fought its first action on the 26th April 1915 during the Battle of St Julien only days after landing on the continent.

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