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poppyOn this day one hundred years ago three soldiers of the 1st Battalion, The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment were killed in action (KIA) in France and one man of the 2nd Battalion died of ptomaine poisoning (D) in India.

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.

1st Battalion War Diary – 31st December 1914

At about 1645hrs we suddenly received an order to stand by and then to move and support the K.R.R where left section had been heavily attacked. At this hour we had 200 men away in the Sussex trenches. The remainder of the Battalion and ‘B Company’ Sussex moved up to the Headquarters of the K.R.R.

The enemy had driven an advanced post of the K.R.R and had established trenches on a high railway embankment running through our line. It was decided that a night attack should take place and at about 1800hrs we moved forward towards the railway.

Captain Bond of the R. Sussex, after making a careful reconnaissance, attacked with his company up the railway while Lieutenant Wilberforce with two platoons supported him on the right.

The attack was driven back by fire and we occupied a trench about 200 yards this side of the position.

Our casualties were not great. Lieutenant Wilberforce and Second Lieutenant Rowell were wounded.

1st (Regular) Battalion

Lance Corporal JAMES BOWERS was the son of John and Mary Bowers, of 9 Cambridge Street, Belfast.

Rank: Lance Corporal
Service No: 1172
Date of Death: 31/12/1914 (KIA)
Age: 24
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.


Private RICHARD DAKER was the son of the late William and Elizabeth Daker and husband of Elizabeth Annie Reay (formerly Daker), of 8 Brunswick Street, Salford, Manchester.

Rank: Private
Service No: 6560
Date of Death: 31/12/1914 (KIA)
Age: 34
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.


Private BENJAMIN PEEL was born in Chadderton, Lancashire and enlisted in Oldham. He had previously served with the 3rd Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and had seen action during the South African campaign. Benjamin Peel had married Jennie Robinson in Stockport in 1907 and they had four children. He reenlisted as a Special Reservist on 31st August 1914 and sailed to France on 22nd September.

Rank: Private
Service No: 3355
Date of Death: 31/12/1914 (KIA)
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.


2nd (Regular) Battalion

Private WILLIAM EATOCK was born and resided in Bury. He enlisted in Manchester on 2nd April 1897 aged 18 years 6 months and had previously served in the Militia whilst working as a cotton piecer. He served through the Boer War being involved in the Defence of Kimberley. William died of ptomaine poisoning in Bangalore on New Years Eve 1914.

Rank: Private
Service No: 5550
Date of Death: 31/12/1914 (D)
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 2nd Bn.

Total Casualties to date (inclusive)

cross 506

1st Battalion: 443 – Worst day: 22/12/1914 (89)
2nd Battalion: 51 – Worst day: 04/11/1914 (49)

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

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

Reserves and Home Service
Depot: 2
3rd Battalion: 1
Unknown: 1

Paul McCormick
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2 Responses to On this day: 31st December 1914

  1. Nigel wimpenny says:

    private Benjamin peel was my great grandad would love to find out more about him.
    Any help would be greatly received.
    Thank you.

  2. Ian Court says:

    Benjamin Peel was my great grandfathers brother..therefore my 2xgreat uncle…superb site and information..

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