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On 10th December 1915, William Ainsworth of 4 Chapel Street, Belmont, Bolton attested into the 5th (Territorial) Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment at Preston. He was given the service number 7914.

At the time of him joining the Army, he was single and had been working as a cotton dyer. He had no previous military experience. William elected his mother, Mrs Priscilla Ainsworth, of the same address, as being his legal next of kin.

At his enlistment medical it was noted that he was 5ft 10.5in and weighed 131lbs.

On the 5th February 1916, William was mobilized and posted into the 4/5th Battalion. Quick to impress his senior ranks he was promoted to Lance Corporal, unpaid, the following October.

In 1917, when the service numbers changed he was given the new style number 243367.

On 18th February 1917, William embarked for France with the 4/5th Battalion. That May, he was made substantive Lance Corporal.

A month after arriving in France he was admitted to 2/2 field ambulance with septic sores on his neck.

In July 1918, coinciding with his promotion to Corporal, William was posted into the 1/5th Battalion as a lewis gunner.

William was promoted up to the rank of Serjeant.

Promotion Dates: Acting Corporal (07/08/1917), Corporal (24/07/1918), Acting Serjeant (01/08/1918) and Serjeant (28/09/18).

On 30th June 1918, William was granted leave to England. He returned to France on 15th July 1918.

On 16th September 1918, the Battalion moved to Saulty, and were now part of XI Corps, 5th Army.

For the remainder of the month, and practically the whole of October they were under nearly constant fire by the retreating enemy, who although on the back foot were still putting up fierce resistance.

By the end of October the Battalion were in the vicinity of Templeuve. Their loses in the last few days had been 3 officers, and 46 other ranks; one of whom was Serjeant William Ainsworth on 27th October 1918.

His mother, Priscilla received notification of her sons death, and in May 1919 she received a letter stating that he had buried in Templeuve Communal Cemetery. It is known that she was planning to visit his grave on 30th June 1922 as she queried the location of the cemetery in a letter to Fulwood barracks.

Rank: Serjeant
Service No: 243367
Date of Death: 27/10/1918
Age: 25
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st/5th Bn.

Paul McCormick
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2 Responses to 243367 SJT. W. AINSWORTH. L.N.LAN.R

  1. Peter Haslam says:

    Hello Paul,

    Do you mind if I make a copy of this bio, mentioning your name? We are hoping to use it for the Belmont History Society.

    Kind regards

    Pete Haslam.

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