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John Furze married Lydia Mary Swain on 25th April 1907 in Taunton. They had one son, John Reginald Furze who was born on 8th April 1910.

Prior to enlisting in the Army Reserve, John Furze was the Innkeeper of the Sanford Arms, Wellington, Somerset.

On 13th November 1915, John signed-up for a short home-service only engagement, he was 36 years old. John was mobilized in October 1916, joining Army Service Corps 666th Company, 69th (Training) Reserve Battalion.

Private Furze was accepted for ”Overseas’ service, sailing from Folkstone to Boulogne on 12th June 1917. Upon his arrival in France, John was transfered to the 8th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, joining them in the field on 28th June 1917. His new service number 27954.

The 8th Battalion moved up to Westhoek Ridge on 1st August 1917, the weather being particularly severe owing to heavy rain.

Skirmishes with the enemy, who were established in Glencorse Wood accounted for seven Officers and 147 Other Ranks killed, wounded or missing during the next four days. One of those men killed was Private John Furze on 5th August 1917.

Lydia received her late-husbands’ personal effects the following January;

  • Letters
  • Photos
  • Wristwatch (broken) with strap and protector piece.

In April 1922, Lydia received the British War Medal and Victory Medal in recognition of Johns War service.

John is remembered on the Menin Gate Memorial.

Rank: Private
Service No: 27954
Date of Death: 05/08/1917
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 8th Bn.

Paul McCormick
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