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Robert Lee was born in 1898, he was the son of Jonathan and Mary Ann Lee, of Morley Hill, Whitfield, Northumberland. His father was a farmer, and his elder brothers and a sister were employed on the farm. It is quite likely this is where Robert would have worked too, if War had not broken out.

1911 Census – Morley Hill, Whitfield, Northumberland

Jonathan Lee, aged 55, Farmer
Mary Ann Lee, aged 49, Wife
Janet Lee, aged 27, Farmers daughter – dairy work.
William Lee, aged 19, Farmers son – working on farm.
Sarah Jane Lee, aged 17, Farmers daughter – dress maker
Jonathan Little Lee, aged 15, Farmers son – working on farm
Samuel Lee, aged 14, Farmers son – shop assistant
Robert Lee, aged 13, At school
Ethel Lee, aged 12, At school
Fred Lee, aged 10, At school
Beatrice Lee, aged 7, At school

Robert enlisted in the Royal Field Artillery at Hexham-on-tyne, Northumberland and was given the service number 174138.

He was later transferred into the 1st Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and given the number 36040.

Robert arrived in France sometime after 1st January 1916, thus entitling him to the British War Medal and Victory Medal.

Robert died of wounds sustained during the night of 14th July 1917 whilst conducting working party duties at Nieuport Bains. One officer and six men were killed, and a further eight men wounded.

The nature of their death is not explained in the War Diary, but I would suspect it would be by German bombardment.

Private Robert Lee is buried in the Coxyde Military Cemetery. He was just 19 years old.

The ‘Whitfield Welcome Home Fund’ apparently presented his family with a gold pocket watch inscribed with the following;

“Presented by the Whitfield Welcome Home Fund in memory of Pte. R Lee. L.N. Lancs.”

Unfortunately no service records have survived.

Rank: Private
Service No: 36040
Date of Death: 14/07/1917
Age: 19
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.
Cemetery: COXYDE MILITARY CEMETERY, I. J. 34.

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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