Friday, 12 June 2015

Haworth, John William - Private (50246)

(No soldier photo available)
17th Battalion,
The King's (Liverpool Regiment),
Killed in Action,
1st August 1917,
Age 27
Commemorated Ypres (Minin Gate) Memorial.

John William Haworth was born in Rising Bridge on 4 October 1890. He was the son of James and Sarah Jane Haworth of 10, Hoyle Street, Rising Bridge and was baptised on 2 November 1890 at St. John’s Church, Stonefold. In 1901 John William was still living at 10, Hoyle Street with his parents, two brothers Harry and James and sisters Betty, Alice, Martha, Elizabeth and Grace and was still attending school.  He was formerly a Private, 37967, in the East Lancashire Regiment.
His younger brother, Harry, who died on 5 September 1917, is also commemorated on Stonefold War Memorial. The two brothers were killed within a month of each other, as John William died on 1 August 1917 at Passchendaele (Third Battle of Ypres). His body was never found. He was 27 years of age.

It is very likely that Pte. Haworth and Harry Davison  joined the East Lancashire Regiment together as both enlisted at Haslingden and their numbers are fairly close. It is also possible they were both wounded in a previous action and transferred to the 17th King's (Liverpool Regiment) together. If so, it is particularly tragic that Pte. Haworth was killed in the same action as his friend. John William Haworth is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial at Ypres.

"The 17th Kings (Liverpool Regiment) took part in a supporting action on the night of the British Fifth Army's assault on the opening day of the Third Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele).
In the early hours of 31 July the Battalion moved into assembly positions immediately east of Maple Copse, near Sanctuary Wood. At 5 am they moved to their forward positions where they were heavily shelled and suffered many casualties. At 5.20 am the whole of the Fifth Army moved forward into battle.
At 7.30 am the Battalion moved forward in artillery formation all the while under heavy German shell fire. When they arrived at a point known as Stirling Castle they received reports that the troops in front of them were held up so they continued their advance with the idea of reinforcing them and carrying forward with the leading troops.
The Battalion then discovered no British troops were in front of them. However, they pushed on until forced to stop. They dug in and held on to the ground won in spite of very heavy shelling from the German forward guns. Any forward movement was at once stopped by very active German machine gun fire. It was then considered that further attacks would be useless. By then it was nightfall and rain was falling incessantly. After two days in a sea of mud and water, in which wounded men drowned, and constantly under fire, the Battalion was relieved.
Pte. Haworth was one of 82 men killed and 202 wounded during that period. His body was never found". From – Bill Turner’s Book.