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Bernard and Joseph were brothers who served alongside their uncle, John Cox.

The brothers were born to Philip and Elizabeth (nee Baldwin m 1895). In 1911 the family lived at 19 Church Terrace Higher Walton Bernard was 15 working as a cotton Weaver and Joseph 14 was Tenter at the Cotton mill.

Bernard enlisted 9th November 1914 into the 4th (Territorial) Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment as Pte 3243/201004. He was 19. Bernard was posted into the 2/4th Batt L.N.L.R and qualified as a Scout. During his life he suffered with recurring knee trouble from an old injury in December 1916 he was admitted into Blackdown General Hospital with gunpowder burns. On the 1st June 1917 Bernard sustained a gunshot wound to his back whilst returning from a raid on the German lines. He recovered and in April 1918 he was appointed Lance Corporal in August he became Corporal to “complete the establishment” of the 4th (Reserve) Batt in Dublin Ireland. Bernard remained in Dublin until he was demobbed 14th May 1919 he had recently been promoted again to Acting Sergeant. Bernard received the BWM & Victory medals and S.W.B. B248821.

His brother Joseph Cox also served in the L.N.L.R and in December 1916 Joseph was mentioned in dispatches. Both brothers were wounded in France 1917 and early 1918 and returned to England. They were then part of the 4th Reserve Battalion that served in Dublin Ireland in 1918/1919.

Joseph was gassed during the war and his family believes he never properly recovered and this was a cause of his early death.

One of Joseph’s sons told his story:

My father’s service records were destroyed during WW2 bombing but we know he went with Bernard to Dublin because he was met there by a relation a Doctor living in Dublin at the time. Previous to that he was “mentioned in Dispatches” for taking a message back to HQ from the front line when two previous runners had been killed. He said he had done it so he got back to find out about Bernard who had been injured in a gunpowder explosion, this was in December 1916. The family had his MID certificate but it got lost overtime.
Rather than this being a deterrent to joining the Forces Josephs’ sons served. One brother served in the L.N.L.R 1935/1955 and John served in the 13th/18th Hussars in Malaya also with the L.N.L.R. My Father in law also served in the L.N.L.R 1927-1946 firstly in India aged 16 and then into France two weeks after Dunkirk. He was then posted into Italy where he was finally demobbed in 1946.” Joseph died in 1957 aged 59.

John Cox
John was born 1875 Higher Walton to Bernard and Rose (nee Lunny 1858 St Walburges) the youngest son of six children. Mary, Margaret, Philip Edward, Ann John and Rose Ann. Philip was the father of Bernard and Joseph. In 1911 John was single living with two of his sisters at the family home 1 Bridge Street Higher Walton and working as a Cotton Weaver No service records have been found for John.

I am grateful to the Cox family for their information and contributions.

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