4th September 1916

John Howard Cotterrell was killed on 4th September 1916 serving as a Lance Corporal with the 2nd Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial. He was born in Chessetts Wood, Knowle in 1882 and was the youngest of the seven children (five sons, two daughters) born to parents Edward (a gardener) and Alice (née Clark) who had married at Knowle in November 1871.

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3rd September 1916

Eight local men were killed in action on 3rd September 1916 whilst serving with the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in France. Unpublished research by the late Alan Tucker describes the 14th Battalion in assault positions near Angle Wood at 2am on 3rd September, ready for an attack towards Falfemont Farm. The farm was on high ground overlooking the Allied positions and was a German fortified strong point immediately in front of the German trenches.

The attack began at 9am with an assault by the 2nd Battalion King’s Own Scottish Borderers. It faltered quickly as there was no protective barrage to provide cover, and German machine guns cut down the soldiers 500 yards from the front of the farm. The 14th Battalion Royal Warwicks joined the attack, with the 15th Battalion joining in at about 1pm. The men who had survived were relieved at midnight, and the farm was finally taken on 5th September by the 1st Cheshires and 1st Bedfords. By this time, no part of the farm was left standing.

None of our eight local Royal Warwicks casualties killed in this action has a known grave and all are commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial.

  • Private Archibald Henry Brown, 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Lance Corporal Hugo Buckley, 16th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Private Rowland Hill Burgess, 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Lance Corporal Henry Wood Doble, 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Private Oliver Robert Foreshew, 2nd Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Private Garnet Smith, 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Private Henry Troman, 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
  • Private Frederick George Wilsdon, 14th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment

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