SKELTON - IN - CLEVELAND
"WE WILL REMEMBER THEM" |
20388 Gunner FRANK ERNEST SCURRAH.
41st Battery, 42nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.
Died of wounds, aged 21, on the 17th April 1918.
Born at Ormesby, Middlesbrough.
Son of Charles and Charlotte Scurrah of 17 William St, North Skelton, Yorks.
Pernes British Cemetery.
1911. Frank, aged 14, was living at 52 Beaumont St, North Ormesby, Middlesbrough and working as an Apprentice Fitter in a Pipe Foundry. He had been born in North Ormesby.
His father, Charles, aged 40, was a Blacksmith making hoops for cast Iron Pipes. He was born in North Ormesby.
His mother, Charlotte, aged 39, had been born in Bedale-Well, Yorks. She had had 4 children and all were living.
Frank had two brothers Harold, 10 and James Isaac, 7.
And a sister Frances Maria, aged 2.
At some time before Frank's death they family moved to 17 William St, North Skelton, Yorks.
The 42nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery was part of the 3rd Division which took part in most of the major Battles of the War.
Frank's Medal Card shows that he was awarded the 1914/15 Star and first entered the War on the 14th July 1915 in Egypt.
The 42nd Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery never served there, so Frank must have been transferred at some time.
It is possible that between July 1915 and his death in April 1918 he was out of action wounded at some time and returned to duty with a different Unit, as often happened.
In November 1917 the Germans had made a peace with the Russians and in the Spring of 1918, reinforced by Divisions moved from the Eastern front, they launched a series of offensives against what they thought were exhausted British lines.
If they could break through to the coast before the Americans arrived in numbers they could still win the War.
In March they had advanced some 40 miles on the Somme, almost reaching Amiens.
Just as that offensive weakened, they began another attack on the 9th April to the North, on the River Lys, West of Armentieres.
The Allies, mainly British, were driven back some 20+ miles and many men were killed and wounded before the advance was halted.|
Frank Scurrah must have been wounded some time in this action and taken back to a Casualty Station, where he eventually died.
Pernes-en-Artois where Frank is buried, is a small town on the main road from Lillers to St Pol, about 30 miles South West of Bethune.
The British Cemetery was not started until April 1918.