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George Hesketh was born in 1891 in Blackburn, Lancashire. He was the son of William and Elizabeth Hesketh (nee Hodgkinson).

William and Elizabeth were both originally from Preston and they were married in Christ Church, Preston in 1878. They had 9 children altogether including George; the others were Margaret Ann (1879), Thomas (1880), Martha (1883), Elizabeth (1886), Alfred (1889), Richard (1892), Annie (1894) and Arthur (1898).

When the 1901 Census was recorded the family were living at 1 Cromwell Terrace, Blackburn. At some point after that William and Elizabeth and 3 of their children, Alfred, Richard and Annie moved back to Preston.

At the time of the 1911 Census George`s parents were living at 73 Berry Street, Preston. William Hesketh was the owner of a restaurant in Church Street, Preston. Son Richard was a waiter and daughter Annie a cook, presumably both working for their father in his restaurant. Son Alfred was a conductor for the corporation. Also living with the family was William Hodgkinson, a brother to Elizabeth, he was also assisting in the restaurant. The family also employed 2 general servants, Alice Lancaster and Margaret Lawton and they are shown as living with the family.

Meanwhile George was still in Blackburn in 1911. He was living with an older married sister Margaret Ann Wilkinson and her family at 4 Edith Street. George was employed as a shuttle finisher.

On the 12 October, 1911 George married Margaret Hall in Blackburn. A son William was born on 24 May, 1913.

On the 2 September, 1914 George enlisted at Preston for the duration of the war. He was posted to the 10th Battalion. He gave his address as 8 Fishwick Road, Preston and his occupation was a waiter.

His medical inspection report states that George was 5`4” tall, had blue/grey eyes, brown hair and had a fresh complexion. He named his wife Margaret as his next of kin.

George embarked at Folkestone on 31 July, 1915 with the 10th Battalion bound for France.

According to his papers there was only one minor misdemeanour recorded. On 17 June, 1916 “Whilst on active service overstaying his pass from 12 midnight on 17/6 until 8.30pm on 22/6”. George`s punishment was 7 days confinement to camp.

A couple of months later on 11 August, 1916 George was killed in action. The following report appeared in the local paper.


George`s widow Margaret received a pension of 15 shillings per week for herself and one child from 26 February, 1917.

Private George Hesketh was awarded the 1915 Star, British War and Victory Medals for his services in the war. His name is recorded on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing.

Rank: Private
Service No: 13229
Date of Death: 11/08/1916
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 10th Bn.

Additional family information:

Two of George`s brothers also enlisted and unfortunately like George they did not return home from the war either.

24194 Private Richard Hesketh, 1st Battalion Loyal North Lancs. Died from wounds on 18 September, 1918. Buried Brie British Cemetery, Somme, France. Richard was awarded the British War and Victory Medals.

202924 Gunner Alfred Hesketh, Royal Field Artillery “C” Bty. 148th Bde. Died of wounds 20 June, 1917. Buried Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, West Vlaanderen, Belgium. Alfred had married Annie Cooper in Blackburn in 1913. Alfred was awarded the British War and Victory Medals.

Research completed by Janet Davis

Janet Davis
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