Monday, 4 August 2014

England enter the War

One hundred years ago today on the 4th August 1914, England declared war on Germany, subsequently becoming a major player in what became known as World War One. Over 400 men associated with the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes fought in the War. The charity has now produced a roll of honour on its website to commemorate these men. 


Together Trust Roll of Honour, 1914-1918

We know that 33 men associated with the charity whether a refuge boy, trustee, committee member or staff member never came back from the War. Over the next few weeks we’ll be telling some of their stories through the blog.

Harold

Today we start with a Refuge boy who was admitted to the charity in 1906. By the age of 8 he had lost both of his parents and was brought up for the next few years in the house of his older, married brother. Three years later however, his sister-in-law, who was expecting her second child, applied for his admission to the orphan homes as she could no longer afford to keep him. Her husband, Harold’s brother,
had had an accident a few months before and the family was subsequently surviving on a reduced income.




Harold in uniform

Harold entered No. 4 George Street, (Garnett Home) on the 5th June 1906. Here he lived for 4 years, attending a local school, along with 15 other children. At the age of 14 he gained employment with a drapery shop in Liverpool as an apprentice. By the time of his enrolment he was back in Manchester working for Messrs. William Sutcliffe’s Limited, High Street, Manchester. 


Work Agreement
He enlisted at the beginning of the war and was sent to France with the 15th Battalion of the Lancashire Fusilliers. News of his death was reported in the Manchester Evening News that Private Harold, formally of Rusholme was ‘killed by a rifle grenade’ on 17 March 1916. He is commemorated at Le Treport Military Cemetery in Seine-Maritime, France.

His housemother Mrs Howarth on hearing the news of his death recorded;

“We were very grieved to hear of his death, he had always been such a good lad in every way, as he grew older we always felt he was a real elder brother to the younger boys. It was most touching many times when he has been home, to see him with the little ones, he was never tired of them, and they used to love to have him with them. We shall miss him very much, but it is a comfort to know he has died as he always tried to live, doing his duty and helping others.”

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