Allan Tattersfield


Acting Bombardier 95023, 1st /1st Essex Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery

Killed in Action 21st November 1917 aged 34

Buried Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery, Belgium

Son of Frederick James and Frances Mary Tattersfield

Lived The Hollins, Kilpin Hill, Heckmondwike

Allan was born on 19th November 1883 in Batley; one of the seven children of Frederick James Tattersfield, a Blanket Merchant, and his wife, Frances Mary Walker, who had married in 1876 and lived at The Hollins, Kilpin Hill, Heckmondwike. On the 1901 census Allan was listed as a Woollen Merchant’s Assistant but by 1911 he had become a Cloth Merchant on his own account. His Grandfather, Jeremiah Tattersfield, also of The Hollins, had been a well known Blanket Manufacturer, employing 280 men, women and boys at Bower Lane, Kilpin Hill, Heckmondwike in the 1870’s. The Tattersfield family are able to trace their ancestry back to Thomas Tattersfield who married Ann Appleby at Dewsbury Parish church on 10th November 1696. Allan’s father died in 1912 aged 63.

Allan attested on 18th January 1916 at Liversedge and was put into the army reserve until 9th June 1916 when in Great Yarmouth, Suffolk, he was posted, as Bombardier 95032, in the 71st Essex Heavy Battery to No 4 Depot Royal Garrison Artillery. He remained on British soil until he was sent to France with the British Expeditionary force on 25th May 1917.

Soon after the outbreak of war the Heckmondwike Upper Independent Chapel's Young Men's Guild began to produce a monthly 'Active Service Magazine'. The publication enabled the active service members to receive news of one another’s whereabouts and also messages from the minister. In March 1917, Allan's entry was

A/Bombardier Allan Tattersfield (95023), A Company, 4th Depot, Royal Garrison Artillery, Hut 4, 3 Lines, South Camp, Ripon. His older brother Frederick's address was Headquarters, Friends Ambulance Unit, B.E.F., France.

The Chapel encouraged those serving in the forces to supply a photograph to be mounted in several large frames and then displayed in an exhibition on 24th April 1917. However Allan's photograph was not amongst the 84 that were displayed. His service record shows that he set off with the British Expeditionary Force to France on 25th May 1917 when his mother was still living at The Hollins. She later moved to Framlingham in Suffolk. In the December 1917 issue, Allan's entry read as "Bomb. A. Tattersfield (95023) 1/1st Essex Heavy Battery, R.G.A., B.E.F. France". The next issue carried news of his death as follows:-

"For God, for Righteousness, and for Liberty.

Another name from our roll has been added to the scroll of fame which will be handed down throughout the ages to come, of the men who took their stand in the great battle for God, for righteousness, and for liberty.

Allan Tattersfield has passed onward to a higher life. He was killed in action during November. A descendant of strong puritan forefathers, he had inherited much of their great love of liberty, and although he hated war, and everything connected with war, with a passionate hatred, he loved and was ever ready to stand firm for liberty, for righteousness, and for God.

And with that vision grand at morn he passed -

That he with others yielded up his life

For love of race, Truth's victory at last,

To win a wider vision for the strife;

The "greater love" that more no man could give,

The sacrifices outpoured that men may live.

We deeply sympathise with our deceased's friend's mother and near relatives, and in this heavy trial which they have been called upon to bear trust that God will be very close to them, will put his loving arms around them and give them strength and hope for the future. As our pastor pointed out in his letter last month the names of those belonging to our church who have made the great sacrifice have doubled in number during the past year, but we believe that the sacrifice has not been in vain. It would be wrong to say that these men are dead, 'O rather say: that these do live (does nobleness o'er die?)' "

Allan was killed in action on 21st November 1917 in Flanders and is buried in Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery two and a half miles West of Ypres. When Allan’s will was published his widowed mother had moved to live at Storthholme, Pembroke Road, Framlingham, Suffolk.

The Cleckheaton Advertiser & Spenborough Times published a report of his death on 6th December 1917 as follows “We regret to announce that Bombardier Allan Tattersfield, 1st-1st Essex Heavy Battery, R.G.A. has been killed in action in recent fighting in France. He was the fourth son of the late Mr Frederick Tattersfield, of The Hollins, Dewsbury Moor, and one of the heads of the late firm of Messrs. Jeremiah Tattersfield and Sons, blanket manufacturers, of Kilpin Hill Mills. A staunch Liberal, he was a member of both the Batley and Staincliffe Liberal Clubs. He enlisted in the Royal Garrison Artillery and had been in France some months. One of his brothers, Mr Frederick Tattersfield, is on the Headquarters Staff of the Friends’ Ambulance Unit and has been in France since the early days of the war

Medals: Victory and British

Commemorated: Heckmondwike Green Park and Vellum Roll; Upper Independent Chapel Memorial, Active service magazine; St Saviour's Parish Church Memorial; Batley War Memorial.{KH-127}

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