JAMES MORTON

Private 16/1488, 16th Bn West Yorkshire Regiment (Bradford Pals)

Died: 27th February 1917

Buried in Owl Trench Cemetery, Hebuterne

Lived at 67, Croft Street, Heckmondwike


James was the son Henry & Frances Jane Morton; he was born in Heckmondwike in 1879 and was one of nine children.

Before joining the army in 1915 he worked as a teamer at Marsden’s Engines Ltd.

James joined the 16th Battalion – the Bradford Pals on 16th June 1915.  The 1st Bradford Pals, was raised in Bradford in September 1914 by the Lord Mayor and City.  James was at home on leave for the last time in September 1915.   In December of the same year the regiment set sail for Alexandria in Egypt to defend the Suez Canal. James wasn’t there for very long because in March 1916 the regiment left Port Said aboard HMT Briton bound for Marseilles in France, a journey which took 5 days. They travelled by train to Pont Remy, a few miles south east of Abbeville and marched to Bertrancourt arriving on 29 March 1916. Their first taste of action was at Serre on the Somme where they suffered heavy casualties as the battle was launched. In 1917 they were in action in the Battle of Arras.   James is commemorated on the Roll of Honour at St James Church, he was also a member of the Oddfellows Institute.

"At Rest" was inscribed on his Commonwealth War Grave headstone at the request of his mother.
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