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poppyOn this day one hundred years ago one soldier of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment died as a prisoner of war in Germany; and a second man died due to an accident in the UK.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them.

3260 Private John CASSIDY

John Cassidy was the son of Jim Cassidy of Liverpool and had married widow Margaret Ann Cassidy in September 1913. They had one child together, Margret Elsie who was born in Burnley on 30th May 1914. His wife also had a daughter (Dorothy, b. Dec 1909) from her previous marriage. They lived together at 22 King Street, Burley.

John was a time expired soldier that was recalled to the Colours as a Special Reservist when war broke out in August 1914. He had previously served with the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, service number 6271 but had since been working as a tailor.

He sailed to France to join the 1st Battalion on 29th November 1914 and was captured at Givenchy on 22nd December the same year (see report)

John died as a prisoner of war at Wittenberg on 16th February 1915*. His wife later moved to  2 Charlotte Street, Burnley.

Rank: Private
Service No: 3260
Date of Death: 16/02/1915
Age: 39
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.

*British Red Cross records show date of death as 11th February 1915.

3268 Corporal Harold BUTTERWORTH


Harold Butterworth was the son of Edwin and Louisa Butterworth of 387, Bury Road, Tonge, Bolton.

Harold enlisted in the Territorial Force on 6th November 1914 in Bolton. He was embodied the same day into the 5th (Reserve) Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment.

At his enlistment medical he was described as being 29 years 5 months old, 5ft 6in tall, with a 38in chest and of good physical development.

On 23rd January 1915 he was promoted to Corporal.

On 16th February that year he was found dead in Blackpool Central Public Library, the staff headquarters of the troops based in the town. He was noticed missing at about 05:20hrs. Later, a guard found him lying at the top of some concrete steps with a wound to his head. It was believed he had tripped whilst running up the steps.

A newspaper cutting that is placed within his service record reads;

Territorial’s fatal fall when on guard
A Bolton Territorial, named Harold Butterworth, of 387, Bury Road, Tonge, has met with an untimely end at Blackpool.

He was attached to the 2/5th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, which is stationed at the seaside resort, and on Tuesday morning he was killed. This is the first fatalitiy that has occurred in connection with the Reserve Battalion of the 5th L.N.L. Regiment, and the public sympathy goes out to the parents and relatives of Corporal Butterworth, who is exceptionally well-known in the town.

He is a young man, being 29 years of age, and eldest son of Mr Edwin Butterworth, and enlisted soon after the formation of the Reserve Battalion. Prior to then he was a selfactor minder employed at Messrs. Thomassons’ Mill Hill Mill, and he joined about the same time as his brother (Arthur), and they both earned rapid promotion, both being made Corporals, the deceased being promoted first. He was over in Bolton on a flying visit last weekend.

The deceased was particularly well-known in swimming circles, and at the time of his death was the assistant secretary to the Bolton Bridgeman Club. He has worked hard for that organisation, and has earned special praise for his labours in the matter of life-saving, being hon. instructor to the club in that department. He has been very successful in teaching life-saving, and was awarded a special honour by the Royal Life Saving Society.

Our Blackpool correspondent wired – Corporal Butterworth was killed at the Blackpool Central Public Library on Tuesday. He was on duty at the staff headquarters of the troops billeted in the town. He was missed about 05:21hrs, and on the guard going in search of him he found him lying at the top of the concrete steps with a wound in the forehead. He had evidently tripped while running up the steps.

Comments on the hours of guard duty
The fact that a soldier in training at Blackpool had been on duty for 15 hours prior to meeting his death by accident was referred to at the inquest on Wednesday night.

Butterworth was put in charge of the guard at the divisional staff headquarters, at the Central Library, Queen Street, Blackpool, on Monday night, and about 04:55hrs on Tuesday he was seen to go up two flights of steps. As he did not return in half an hour a sentry sent a bugler boy to see where he was.

The bugler, a lad called Humphreys, found Butterworth lying on the top landing unconscious and bleeding from the nose and mouth.

Doctor Barnes arrived and pronounced life extinct.

Butterworth had apparently stumbled on the top step and fell with his head on the concrete floor, fracturing his skull.

The Coroner and the jury commented upon the fact that Butterworth had been on parade on Monday and went on duty in charge of the guard at 17:30hrs Monday afternoon, and was not to go off duty until 09:00hrs on Tuesday. He had no actual work to do, apart from seeing the change made in the guard every two hours, but he had not to fall asleep.

It might seem to civilians, said the Coroner, that the time Butterworth had to remain on guard was unneccessarily long, something like 15.5 hrs, but it seemed to be a military rule, and when the men were on service they would probably have harder things to do.

Corporal Harold Butterworth is buried in St James Churchyard.

Rank: Corporal
Service No: 3268
Date of Death: 16/02/1915
Age: 29
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 2nd/5th Bn.

Total Casualties to date (inclusive)

cross 558

1st Battalion: 490 – Worst day: 22/12/1914 (89)
2nd Battalion: 52 – Worst day: 04/11/1914 (49)

1/4th Battalion: 3
1/5th Battalion: 3
2/5th Battalion: 1

New Armies
7th Battalion: 1
10th Battalion: 1

Reserves and Home Service
Depot: 5
3rd Battalion: 1
Unknown: 1

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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.
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