Lieutenant Edward Macildowie

Lieutenant Edward John Howard Macildowie, 9th ( Service ) Battalion, ( Glasgow Highlanders), Highland Light Infantry. He was killed in action in France on 1st November 1916, aged 25, during the last stages of the Battle of the Somme. He was the son of C.M. and the late Rev. John Macildowie was a Ward of the late Rev. Dr. Robert Borland of Yarrow Manse. He is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Thiepval, Somme, France. He was educated at Fettes College, Edinburgh and graduated from Edinburgh University in 1912 with M. A. Hons( Classics) after which he began his Divinity studies at Glasgow University and graduated  B.D. in 1915. He had been a member of the University Officer Training Corps and was commissioned from there in November 1915. On 1st November a greatly depleted Battalion  together with the 2nd Worcesters attacked German positions named ” Boritzka” and “Hazy” trenches near Trones Wood. Conditions were appalling, artillery  preparation insufficient and thus the attack failed with heavy casualties. Colonel John Stormonth Darling from Kelso and three other Officers including Macildowie were killed together with 96 Other Ranks and many more were wounded. On 6th November the Battalion were relieved and went back in reserve at Fricourt to reform and refit.  The photos show the dreadful conditions of the shell churned battlefield which made any sort of movement very difficult. The colour image shows a peaceful Somme landscape today with” no gas, no barbed wire, no guns firing now”.

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