(L to R) British War Medal; Allied Victory Medal
John was born in Ancoats, Manchester. We don't know anything about his early life or his family.
When the First World War broke out in August 1914 John was one of thousands of men who rushed to join the Army. John enlisted during August 1914 into the newly formed 12th Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. This was a 'Service' Battalion, made up of men who had joined the Army for the duration of the war. John was given the service number 3898.
The 12th Battalion trained at Bovington in Dorset and at Hursley Park in Hampshire before sailing from Folkestone to France on the 15th July 1915.
John first served in the Ypres area of Belgium until March 1916 when he moved to Armentieres in France. The 12th Battalion was preparing to take part in the Somme offensive and trained for this from the 19th May until the 27th June.
The Offensive began on the 1st July 1916. The 12th Battalion was not involved until the 3rd, but John was Killed in Action on the 1st July. We don't know the circumstances of his death.
After the war John's body could not be found so his is one of the 72203 names listed on the Thiepval Memorial in France. John is on Pier 13 Face A or Pier 14 Face C. As well as his British War Medal and Allied Victory Medal John was also awarded the 1914-15 Star for his war service.