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Harold Foster was born in Wigan, Lancashire on 16th August 1888.

In 1911, Harold and his wife Margaret (nee Morley) were living at 7 Coop Street, Wigan. They had a two year old son named Charles, and a three year old daughter named Lydia. Harold was working as a Coal Miner (Hewer).

Private Foster served in the 1st Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and arrived in France with a batch of reinforcements on the 3rd June 1915. Harold was quick to impress the senior ranks, soon being promoted through the JNCO ranks he was appointed Lance Serjeant.

He was wounded in action not long after having arrived in theatre, his name being published int the Manchester Courier on 14th September 1915.

Lance Serjeant Harold Foster died near Passchendale on 14th November 1917, quite likely as a result of being wounded by shrapnel from shell fire the day before.

The 1st Battalion War Diary for the period reads;

12th November 1917 – Near Passchendaele

The enemy opened two very heavy bombardments on our front area at 05:00hrs for 30 minutes, and about 16:00hrs for two hours; extremely heavy on our centre and right companies and continuing round the ridge to Passchendaele and the south, but not so heavy on our left. Casualties however were very slight.  Lieutenant Allsop was slightly wounded, but whilst on his way down was blown up by a shell and severely concussed. During the night, ‘A’ Company pushed forward and occupied Virtue Farm without opposition, ‘B’ Company posts being also pushed forward to conform.

13th November 1917 – Near Passchendaele

The enemy opened another very heavy barrage about 05:00hrs which lasted for 2.5 hours. During the rest of the morning and early afternoon the situation was quiet until 16:00hrs when another very heavy barrage was opened. At 16:32hrs the S.O.S went up on our right, apparently due north of Passchendaele. Our guns opened very quickly and an intense artillery duel continued until 17:30hrs when shelling gradually died down and about 18:00hrs the situation was again normal. It was afterwards ascertained that the enemy had been seen massing opposite the Canadian Corps but any attempt to attack had been wiped out by our barrage.  No signs of massing or any attempt to attack was observed on our own front or our extreme left where an enemy detachment estimated at two platoons debouched from the neighbourhood of Tournant Farm and, under cover of the barrage supported by machine-gun fire, endeavoured to advance against our position. They were easily repulsed and did not succeed in getting within 150 yards of our posts. Probably owning to the advance of our posts, the enemy barrage came down mainly in the rear of our front Companies, and casualties were again very slight.  Lieutenant H.P Burton was wounded and there were about fifteen ‘other rank’ casualties.

The relieving Battalion, the 2nd Royal Sussex had been warned to ‘stand-by’ until the situation was quieter, but about 19:00hrs it was possible to carry on. The early part of the relief was safely accomplished but two platoons which were due to relieve our centre company, ‘B’ Company failed to arrive up in the position until after daybreak.

13 – 14th November 1917

Unfortunately on the way out two platoons each of ‘A’ and ‘B’ Companies go caught in a heavy enemy barrage on the road between Mosselmarkt and Meetcheele and suffered heavy losses.

The last two platoons of ‘B’ Company were relieved about 07:30hrs and the whole battalion had got back to the support area by 10:30hrs.

Dispositions at first taken up were three companies holding the Bellevue ridge from Bellevue to the cemetery, with ‘D’ Company in reserve near Battalion Headquarters at Kron Prinz farm. As however the position occupied by ‘C’ Company was very exposed to enemy shell fire, they were withdrawn to trenches near Kron Prinz farm to move up to their original position if required.

14th November 1917 – Kron Prinz Farm

Quiet day, the Battalion got some well earned rest after a most trying time in the front-line trenches.

Harold Foster is buried at Poelcapelle British Cemetery, Belgium.

sjtfoster

Rank: Lance Serjeant
Service No: 19265
Date of Death: 14/11/1917
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.
Cemetery: POELCAPELLE BRITISH CEMETERY

Unfortunately his service records appear not to have survived.

1st Battalion Casualties during this period 12th – 14th November 1917

33193 Private ALBERT EDWARD BAKER L.N.LAN.R
26915 Private J H BALL L.N.LAN.R
15946 Private ALBERT FINCH L.N.LAN.R (M M)
290419 Lance Corporal JAMES HARRISON L.N.LAN.R
14312 Private MICHAEL HONAN L.N.LAN.R
15350 Private EDWARD TIMONY L.N.LAN.R
28143 Private WILLIAM ELLIS TURNER L.N.LAN.R
13803 Private WILLIAM WELSH L.N.LAN.R
10640 Private FREDERICK WHITTAKER L.N.LAN.R
36069 Private GEORGE RITCHIE WILSON L.N.LAN.R
35996 Private GILBERT CARTWRIGHT L.N.LAN.R
37601 Private HARRY WARD L.N.LAN.R
34511 Private CHARLES H. ALEXANDER L.N.LAN.R
26917 Private FREDERICK BUNNER L.N.LAN.R
31528 Private JAMES DEAN L.N.LAN.R
35991 Private K J DEAN L.N.LAN.R
20578 Private DENNIS DIGGLE L.N.LAN.R
34579 Private W J EDWARDS L.N.LAN.R
35957 Private GEORGE HENRY GWYNNE EVERETT L.N.LAN.R
18352 Private JAMES HERBERT FEARNLEY L.N.LAN.R (M M)
19265 Lance Serjeant HAROLD FOSTER L.N.LAN.R
36009 Private THOMAS HILL L.N.LAN.R
26695 Private JOSEPH LONSDALE L.N.LAN.R
9325 Private JAMES MARS L.N.LAN.R
27413 Private JOHN McGLYNN L.N.LAN.R
14449 Lance Corporal WILLIAM NIGHTINGALE L.N.LAN.R
23284 Private ISAAC RODGERS L.N.LAN.R
2662 Serjeant HERMAN SCHULTZ L.N.LAN.R (D C M &  M M)
37595 Private JOHN TOMLINSON L.N.LAN.R
32380 Private ALBERT EDWARD WADE L.N.LAN.R
29815 Private HENRY WHITTLE L.N.LAN.R

Paul McCormick
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Paul McCormick

Paul McCormick is the creator and administrator for the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment website. Since 2010 he has been researching the soldiers that served during the First World War and sharing their stories on his website. You can contact Paul through the website 'Contact Me' page or on Twitter and Facebook.
Paul McCormick
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One Response to 19265 LSJT. H. FOSTER. L.N.LAN.R

  1. Philip Gosling says:

    May name is Phil Gosling and my Dads Uncle was Harry Ward 37601, 1st Battalion, loyal North Lancashire. He was killed on the 13th November 1917.

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