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Harry Lockwood

Private Harry Lockwood, 34385, York and Lancaster Regiment, 8th Battalion

Harry Lockwood was born in Ossett on the 9th July 1889 and baptised at Ossett Holy Trinity Church on the 7th August 1889. He was the only child of Ossett couple Joshua and Grace (nee Pollard) who were married in 1889. In 1901, Joshua, Grace and Harry were living on West Well Road, Ossett. Joshua was a carrier working on his own account.

By 1911, the Lockwood family had moved to 39, High Street, Starbeck, Harrogate, where Joshua now worked as a self-employed metal broker and 21 year-old Harry was working as his assistant in the business.

On the 26th February 1913, Harry Lockwood married spinster Mary Watson Dent at St Paul’s Church, Knaresborough and on the 31st August 1913 a child, Grace Elizabeth, was born to the couple. Sadly Mary Lockwood, aged 29, died in early 1914, leaving Harry a widower with a child aged under 6 months of age.

On the 30th December 1914, Harry, aged 25 years and 5 months, a labourer, of 39, High Street, Starbeck, Harrogate enlisted in the army, at York, for the duration of the WW1. He joined the 3rd Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment on the 7th January 1915, with service number 17686. Harry Lockwood was 5’ 6¼” tall and weighed 123lbs with a 36” chest measurement.

Harry was quickly promoted to unpaid Lance Corporal on the 10th May 1915, then to paid Lance-Corporal on the 9th June 1915 and he reverted to the rank of Private on the 19 July 1915. Harry’s army conduct in these early days was short of exemplary and during his posting to Whitley Bay between February and August 1915, he was charged on six occasions for a variety of offences including: smoking on the line of march; talking on parade; inattention; absence on parade; hesitating to obey an order; having a dirty rifle and being unshaven on parade.

This latter offence, on the 17th July 1915, appears to have been the reason for his being reduced to the ranks two days later. On the 7th September 1915, Harry was found asleep at his post and accordingly received punishment of 24 hours detention. By this time Harry was serving overseas in the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force having embarked for Egypt on the 29th August 1915. In 1915, Harry saw service in the Dardanelles and in Cairo, where he was hospitalised with rheumatism and a septic leg for a short period.

In early 1916, he was in Alexandria Egypt and by March 1916 his unit had moved to El Farden, near Ismailia, Egypt. On the 1st July 1916, his unit moved to France and he arrived there the following day. By the 12 July 1916, he was in the field attached to 8th Battalion, York and Lancaster Regiment. Harry Lockwood formally transferred to the 8th Battalion, Yorks and Lancaster Regiment on the 10th September 1916 with service number 34385. At some time in the 8th York and Lancs, Harry also had the service number 34383, and he had once again been promoted to Lance corporal.

The 8th (Service) Battalion of the York and Lancaster Regiment was formed at Pontefract in September 1914 as part of K3 and came under orders of 70th Brigade in 23rd Division. They moved to Frensham, and on to Aldershot in November 1914. The Battalion moved to Hythe in February 1915 and went on in May to Bordon. On the 27th August 1915, they landed at Boulogne. On the 18th October 1915, they transferred with Brigade to 8th Division and on the 17th July 1916, the Battalion returned with Brigade to 23rd Division. In November 1917 the Division moved to Italy concentrating between Mantua and Marcaria before taking over the front line at the Montello on the 4th of December. In 1918 they were in action during the fighting on the Asiago Plateau and the Battle of Vittorio Veneto, including the passage of the Piave and the Monticano.

Both the 8th and 9th Battalions of the York and Lancasters were attached to the 23rd Division in Italy during April 1918. The 9th Battalion War Diary

"8th to 11th April Battalion in the Line. Our patrols were very active nightly and on the night of 9 -10 a fighting patrol consisting of two Officers and 20 O.R. succeeded in capturing 2 prisoners - just outside the enemy's wire at MORAR. The patrol returned safely with the two prisoners without loss. 2/Lt F Flory was slightly wounded in the foot."

It is likely that Harry Lockwood's battalion was close by at Morar, in the Asiago area of northern Italy and that he was captured by the Austrians. However, why he was in a German hospital at Cologne is unknown.

Harry Lockwood was posted missing on the 9th April 1918. He was captured by the Germans on the 9th April 1918 and died on 19 July 1918. The cause of his death was an abscess in his frontal sinus and pulmonary tuberculosis.

Private Harry Lockwood was buried in Cologne Cemetery and his grave marked by a cross inscribed with his name. He died in the presence of his comrades and the German male nurse "being fortified with the consolations of his religion."

Harry Lockwood, Private, in the 8th York and Lancaster Regiment, D Company, Driver, aged 29, died on the 19th July 1918 at 10.15 p.m. at Cologne in the Fortress Hospital VI. He was officially confirmed as dead in late October 1918, after the army received a translation of the circumstances of his death.

In November 1918, a separation allowance and an allotment of pay (the amount of unpaid army pay due to Harry at the time of his death) was made to Grace Lockwood as the mother of Harry and guardian of his child, five year old Grace Elizabeth. With effect from the 6th May 1919, Grace Elizabeth, the child of Harry Lockwood was awarded a pension of 10/- a week, and the papers provided in support of her application were returned to her guardian by the Ministry of Pensions.

In September 1919, the Army issued their usual request regarding the close relatives of the deceased soldier and this was completed by Harry’s mother,Grace Lockwood, who was living at 39, High Street, Starbeck. Harry was an only child and had been lost but so too had Grace’s husband, Joshua and her daughter in law, Mary Watson Lockwood (nee Dent). The family now comprised only Grace and her grand daughter Grace Elizabeth aged six.

Harry Lockwood was posthumously awarded the 1914/15 Star, to recognise his service prior to 31st December 1915, in addition to the British and Victory medals. Harry’s mother, Grace, died aged 60 in Summer 1928 by which time her ward, Harry’s daughter, Grace Elizabeth, was aged only 15 years.

In late 1935, Grace Elizabeth Lockwood, married James Hawkridge in the Knaresborough Registration area which then included Starbeck. The couple had two children; Mildred D Hawkridge born Spring 1936 and Jean Hawkridge born late 1937.

Asiago 1918

Private Harry Lockwood, aged 29 years, son of Joshua and Grace Lockwood, of 39, High Street, Starbeck, Harrogate, died on the 19th July 1918. He is buried at grave reference VIII. D. 22. at the Cologne Southern Cemetery, 1 Koln (Cologne), Nordrhein-Westfal, Germany.

More than 1,000 Allied prisoners and dozens of German servicemen were buried in Cologne Southern Cemetery during the First World War. Commonwealth forces entered Cologne on 6 December 1918, less than a month after the Armistice, and the city was occupied under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles until January 1926. During this period the cemetery was used by the occupying garrison. In 1922 it was decided that the graves of Commonwealth servicemen who had died all over Germany should be brought together into four permanent cemeteries at Kassel, Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne. Over the course of the following year, graves were transferred to Cologne Southern Cemetery from over 180 different burial grounds in Hanover, Hessen, the Rhine and Westphalia.

There are now almost 2,500 First World War servicemen buried or commemorated in the Commonwealth plots at Cologne. The Cologne Memorial, located inside the shelter building at the entrance to the Commonwealth plots, commemorates 25 British and Irish servicemen who died in Germany and who have no known grave. Of these, 19 are known to have died as prisoners but their places of burial are not recorded. The remaining six died after the Armistice by drowning and their bodies were not recovered. The Commonwealth section of the cemetery also contains over 130 Second World War graves, mostly those of servicemen who died with the occupying forces. There are, in addition, 676 non-war graves and 29 burials of other nationalities.


1. Commonwealth War Graves Commission web site