Friends of old Folkestone cemetery
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Left for France These soldiers left for France from Folkestone Corporal James Pollock 5th Battalion The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders James Pollock is awarded a Victoria cross for his conduct and action at Little Willie trench during the battle of Loos in September 1915. His citation read as follows: For most conspicuous bravery near the Hohenzollern redoubt on 27th September, 1915. At about 12 noon, when the enemy's bombers in superior numbers were successfully working up the " Little Willie" trench towards Hohenzollern redoubt, Corporal Pollock, after obtaining permission, got out of the trench alone, walked along the top edge with the utmost coolness and disregard of danger and compelled the enemy's bombers to retire by bombing them from above. He was under heavy machine-gun fire the whole time but continued to hold up the progress of the Germans for an hour, when he was at length wounded.1 In 1916 James was commissioned and in 1919 he left the army as a Captain. James Pollock died on the 10th May 1958. No. S/1456, Donald Fraser, Piper. 7th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders (Ross-shire Buffs, the Duke of Albany's) Killed in action, 25th September 1915, age 27. Donald Fraser was born in Nethy Bridge the son of Donald and May Fraser of Station Cottages, Blair Athol, Perthshire. Nephew of Mr and Mrs Gordon of Ardverikie, Kinguissie. He enlisted at Fort George. Donald arrived in France on the 10th of May 1915 with his battalion. In the 7th Battalion Pipers piped the soldiers into the attack. and Donald was killed in action during the attack on the Hohenzollern Redoubt by the 7th, in the Battle of Loos. He was awarded the 1915 Star, British War Medal, and the Victory Medal. He was one of five pipers from the 7th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders killed, or dying of wounds, during the battle. Today brings back sad memories, Of one who was called to rest, And those who think of him today, Are those who loved him best. (In Memoriam, Strathspey Herald. Date unknown (1921?) Inserted by his Aunt, Uncle and Cousins at Ardverkie) 1London Gazette, publication date 16 Nov 1915, Supplement 29371 page 11449, retrieved 16/03/2016. S/6523 John Lawson, “C” Company 8th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders. (Ross-shire Buffs, the Duke of Albany's) Killed in action 25th September 1915 John was born in Paisley son of Mr and Mrs L Lawson of Achnahannet Grantown-on-Spey. A brother of Lewis Lawson of 13 South Street Grantown-on-Spey. He worked as a railway porter at Knockando. Arriving in France on the 8th July 1915 he was killed in action on the 25th September. His grave is now lost. He is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Grammar School Memorial in Grantown-on-Spey and on the Grantown-on-Spey War Memorial. “He fell where fall the dying brave, Among the noble slain, Nor Kindly love nor tender care Could light that couch of pain. Nor loving hands may kindly tend, The sod above his breast, But tender thoughts will ever haunt, His far off place of rest. (in Memorium, Strathspey Herald, 27th September 1917 and 26th September 1918)1 John Lawson was awarded the 1915 Star, War Medal, and the Victory Medal. 1Page 60, poppies from the Heart of strathspey, Peter Anderson 2010 Private 17424 Thomas Kenny 13th Battalion Durham Light Infantry. Thomas Kenny was a collier and lived at 23 Queen St Castleford. He attested on the 25th February 1915 and crossed to France from Folkestone with the 13th Battalion Durham Light Infantry. He is awarded the Victoria Cross for an action on the 4th November 1915. The Citation reads as follows: No. 17424 Private Thomas Kenny, 13th (Service) Battalion, The Durham Light Infantry. For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty on the night of 4th November 1915, near La Houssoie. When on patrol in a thick fog with Lieutenant Brown, 13th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry, some Germans, who were lying out in a ditch in front of their parapet, opened fire and shot Lieutenant Brown through both thighs. Private Kenny, although heavily and repeatedly fired upon, crawled about for more than an hour with his wounded officer on his back, trying to find his way through the fog to our trenches. He refused more than once to go on alone, although told by Lieutenant Brown to do so. At last, when utterly exhausted, he came to a ditch which he recognised, placed Lieutenant Brown in it, and went to look for help. He found an officer and a few men of his battalion at a listening post, and after guiding them back, with their assistance Lieutenant Brown was brought in, although the Germans again opened heavy fire with rifles and machine-guns, and threw bombs at 30 yards distance. Private Kenny's pluck, endurance and devotion to duty were beyond praise.”5 Thomas may have transited through Folkestone to France on one more occasion as he was presented with the VC at Buckingham Palace by King George V. on the 4th March 1916.6 He is the first soldier from the Durham Light infantry to be awarded the Victoria Cross in the First World War.7 During 1917and again in 1918, this time a gunshot wound to the lower back. He returned home on the 30th October 1918 and was discharged from the army on the 26th September 1919. 8 Thomas was also awarded the 1914-1915 Star, British War Medal and the Victory Medal.9 Thomas Kenny V.C. Died on 29th November 1948. 3British Regiments 1914-1919 page 101 4 13th DLI Battalion War Diary 5 London Gazette, 7th December 1915, Supplement:29394,Page:12281 6 7 retrieved 19/03/2017 8 Pension Record. 9 Medal Card. Author: Peter Anderson (WW1 Blog)
The ‘Friends’ are a volunteer group formed to protect, preserve and promote interest in this lovely old Victorian cemetery.