Private James Calder

Private James Calder, 6th ( Territorial ) Battalion, Gordon Highlanders. He was killed in action in France on 9th April 1918, aged 39 during the German Spring Offensives on the River Lys. He had been born in  Swinton, Berwickshire and was the son of  Jessie and the late George Calder of Polwarth and Duns, Berwickshire and is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Dud Corner, Loos, France. He was the husband of Annie Calder of Cappercleugh, St Mary’s Loch, Yarrow and of Linden Lea, St Boswells. Before enlisting he had been a policeman with the Selkirkshire Constabulary base at Cappercleugh, St Mary’s Loch. He fell during the defence of the village of Lawe where the Battalion suffered heavy casualties.  The colour photo shows the impressive Memorial raised to commemorate the 51st ( Highland ) Division of which the Battalion was part. It was erected in Newfoundland Park on the Somme overlooking “Y” Ravine which was taken when the Division stormed and captured the very strong German positions in Beaumont Hamel in November 1916. A plaque on the Memorial in both English and Gaelic reads ” Friends are Good on the Day of Battle”. The other photos show troops preparing to resist the advancing Germans.

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