Looking for soldiers that served prior to WW1? Find My Past is the best resource for finding information about Victorian-era Soldiers.
By far the best resource for WW1 research. WW1 Service Records, pension papers, medal index cards and casualty information.
Search through millions of archived British Newspaper Articles to find any references to your ancestors.

Martin Leo Wall was born in Preston in 1896 and was the eldest surviving son of Peter and Elizabeth Wall (nee Whiteside). His parents married in Preston in 1892 and by 1901 they were living at 26 Dawson Street West in Preston with Martin and two more sons; Joseph ((1898) and William (1900). Also in the house was a boarder Mary Ann Saul, a single lady aged 33 years who worked in a cotton mill. Peter Wall`s occupation at the time was a general carter.

By 1911 Peter and Elizabeth had three more children; Gilbert (1902), Margaret Ann (1908) and Mary Elizabeth (1911) and they had moved the family to a two up two down terraced property at 26 Farington Street in Preston. Peter Wall was working for the railway as a lorry driver and fourteen year old Martin was `attending the ovens` at a biscuit works.

Unfortunately Martin`s papers are unavailable but from later information we know that he was called up in April 1916 and he joined the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment with the service number 23994. Prior to his enlistment he had been working for Messrs. George Hough on Preston docks.  At some point in the weeks that followed Martin was sent to France with a batch of reinforcements and was later posted to “C” Company of the 1st Battalion.

On the 26th September 1916 the 1st Battalion was involved in action on the Somme and it was during a failed attack on this date that Martin was captured and taken prisoner. The Red Cross P.O.W. records state that he was captured at High Wood and was taken directly to Parchim Prisoner of War Camp. The records also state that Martin was severely wounded in the left leg and as a result his left leg had to be amputated up to the knee.

On the 28th October 1916 the local paper, the Preston Guardian printed a photograph with some details about Martin. His parents had been informed he was missing but they were not aware that he had been taken prisoner and were obviously desperate to hear from anyone who might have any information about him.23994 Private Martin Leo Wall 1st Battalion

The Red Cross records then show that by the 2nd December 1916 Martin had been moved from Parchim to Gustrow prisoner of war camp. The next information on Martin is dated 21st December 1916 when his name appears on a list of repatriated Officers and British prisoners of war. All of the men on the list of repatriated prisoners were seriously wounded, many of them were amputees like Martin. After arriving back in England he was then admitted to the Queen Alexandra Hospital at Millbank in London.

Sadly, Martin did not recover from his wounds and he passed away at the hospital in London on the 30th December 1916.

He was later buried at Kensal Green (St. Mary`s) Roman Catholic Cemetery but it would seem that Martin`s burial place is one of a number of unmarked graves in the cemetery and so his name has been recorded on the screen wall in the cemetery.

After the war his parents would have received the British War and Victory Medals to which their son was entitled and would also have received the Memorial Plaque and Scroll in recognition of his sacrifice.

The name of Martin Leo Wall is also recorded on the War Memorial in St. Walburge`s Roman Catholic Church in Preston.St. Walburge`sSt. Walburge`s panel

Rank: Private
Service No: 23994
Date of Death: 30/12/1916
Age: 20
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, “C” Coy. 1st Bn.

Janet Davis
Latest posts by Janet Davis (see all)
(This post has been visited 108 times in the last 90 days)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.
%d bloggers like this:

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.