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Remembered Today:

1/14th London Scottish Messines Ridge 1914


Arnside98

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Hi. My great Uncle Frank Lionel Mahon died just after the battle of Messine ridge on the 1st November. I’ve found basic information on him but no one knows what happened to him. His brother was told at the time that he was possibly a POW but on the offical records he is “killed in action”. He is listed on the Menin gate. Were they relatively accurate with who died and when? Assume he didn’t respond to a roll call on the 2nd.  Any ideas on where I could get more information? Anyone know much about the early days of the London Scottish ? Thanks 

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Hello 

 

The 1/14th London Scottish Messines Ridge landed in France in the 16 September 1914.

Attached to 1st Brigade, 1st Division

Seeing their first action at Messines on 31st October 1914

 

The brigade was composed as follows during the war

 

1st Battalion, Coldstream Guards (until August 1915)

1st Battalion, Scots Guards (until August 1915)

1st Battalion, Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment)

2nd Battalion, Royal Munster Fusiliers (until August 1914)

1st Battalion, Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders (from September 1914)

1/14th Battalion, London Regiment (from November 1914, left February 1916)

 

 

Will have a look in the diary (hopefully) for you as I have access to ancestry.co.uk :thumbsup:

 

John 

Edited by johnmelling1979
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  • Admin

@Steven Broomfield as you are former London Scottish, can you assist please? 

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3 hours ago, johnmelling1979 said:

 

Hello 

 

The 1/14th London Scottish Messines Ridge landed in France in the 16 September 1914.

Attached to 1st Brigade, 1st Division

Seeing their first action at Messines on 31st October 1914

 

The brigade was composed as follows during the war

 

1st Battalion, Coldstream Guards (until August 1915)

 

 

 

Will have a look in the diary (hopefully) for you as I have access to ancestry.co.uk :thumbsup:

 

John 

 

At Messines they were attached to the Cavalry Corps, not joining the 1st Division until a while later.

1 hour ago, Michelle Young said:

@Steven Broomfield as you are former London Scottish, can you assist please? 

 

I've copied the information, via email, to the Regimental Archivist so see what he can do. Bear in mind, however, that he is not at work at present, for obvious reasons.

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This recent thread may be of possible interest, too. I realise it's a completely different unit, but this is one of the more detailed 'on the spot' accounts from war diaries that I've come across of late.

 

The London Scottish's war diary entry makes mention of the "cavalry trenches" at Messines, which I assume to be those shown in the drawn schematic appended to the Dragoons' narrative:

 

5th Dragoons at Messines

 

 

 

 

 

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Thank you all for your help. There’s always been uncertainty around Franks death so it’s good to get some information on his regiment. Any info is great. My mum is his only surviving relative (his niece) so keen to pass on all of this to her. 

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The London Scottish were a few hundred yards out of the village, on the Wulverghem road, on 31st October. Their right was effectively on the windmill (now site of the regimental memorial), with the left butting up to an Indian regiment (Wilde's Rifles, I think, from memory).

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This may...or may not....be helpful, from The Scotsman May 7th 1915.

Courtesy of the British Newspaper Archive. 

 

 

Screenshot_20200503-094301.jpg

 

 

From The Sheffield Daily Telegraph January 20th 1915.

 

 

Screenshot_20200503-094901.jpg

Edited by sadbrewer
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Thank you for much for this. It now makes a lot of sense. The Mahon you have highlighted is definitely my great uncle. That’s all very interesting. 

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Hello Arnside98

 

Glad I was able to find the map for you and all the bits people are finding for you

 

Steven Broomfield 

New they were attached to the Cavalry Corps! I had forgot to re edit to re add it as I had originally put that on haha

 

Glad to see some newspaper clips have survived :thumbsup:

 

John

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4 hours ago, Steven Broomfield said:

The London Scottish were a few hundred yards out of the village, on the Wulverghem road, on 31st October. Their right was effectively on the windmill (now site of the regimental memorial), with the left butting up to an Indian regiment (Wilde's Rifles, I think, from memory).

 

The map I sent to Arnside98 confirms your post :thumbsup:

Wondering if there is a trench map for the area?

 

John

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2 hours ago, johnmelling1979 said:

 

Wondering if there is a trench map for the area?

 

John

 

Very, very unlikely. The fighting was still pretty fluid and shell scrapes would have been the best to expect. There would have been no time (or, really, need) to produce a trench map for the October 1914 fighting; there will be trench maps of Messines, but for a later period.

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  • 3 years later...

After all the information given to me from the Great War Forum via my daughter Fiona who lives in New Zealand, my son took me to visit Bedford House Cemetery a few week's ago.  My uncle Frank Lionel Mahon is buried here we discovered.  My father (Frank's brother) was told he had either trod on a land mine on 31 October 1914 or had been wounded and taken prisoner by the Germans.  The latter turned out to be the true story.  All those years my father mourned his brother, he did not know that there was a grave to be found.  He thought either Frank had been blown up or was buried in a mass grave which would never be found.  However, The Forum sent information to my daughter and amongst it was the name William Wylie.  He was from the London Scottish too and he died on 31 October along with Frank and two other London Scottish soldiers.  We guessed that in 1932 their bodies were found together and re-buried in Bedford House.  I found the 4 gravestones easily and although I did not know which one was Frank's I laid a poppy on the top of each one.  The Fromelles association sent me the poem 'The Day My Family Came' which is now so very meaningful to me.  So after all these years Mission Accomplished. The Fromelles Association is looking for DNA evidence from my daughter and me as we know we are in the family tree of an Anzac, James John Harris but unfortunately there is no match even though we know he was my grandmother's nephew.  Thank you so much for your help.  I told my father I would keep searching and now the search is over.

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  • 1 month later...

A cousin of my grandfather looks to be listed in The Sheffield Daily Telegraph screenshot a few lines above your relative, Theodore Laing, London Scottish. His name is also on the Menin Gate. We will remember them. Regards, Paul.

Edited by Wardog
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Hi Paul.  Can you send this article to me please.  I don't know whether you saw my posting on my visit to Bedford House Cemetery.  Four London Scottish soldiers were buried by the Germans in Bousebeques where there was a German field hospital as they died of their wounds on 1 November 1914.  Among them was William Wylie who was able to be idntified in the 1930's when they  were reburied at Bedford House.  The other three could no longer be identified one of whom was my uncle Frank.  They are all buried side by side.  I visited this cemetery this summer and put a poppy on the top of the 4 gravestones.  One of these graves is my uncle.  Was one of them your cousin you mention?  I hope so.  I promised my father I woud keep looking and it took my daughter who lives in New Zealand to find out his final resting place and my son to take me there.  My father would have been so pleased.  Mission accomplished - may they all rest in peace.  Best Wishes.  Moira

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Many thanks Chris.   I have printed this information to pass on to my daughter when she comes over in December.  I doubt if there are many close relatives of soldiers who fought and died in the great War left.  I am going back to Ypres on 31 October, this time with my husband, to visit my uncle's grave again as it was about 35 degrees when I went this summer and I could not stay as long as I would have liked.  I also intend to wear my uncle's medals when I march at the Cenotaph in November alongside my husband who used to be in the RAF.

With Best Wishes

Moira

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This is the link which John Melling posted on 02 May 2020. Regards, Paul.

Link to a thread re. my distant relative 

 

Screenshot_20200503-094901.jpg.324c629f1

Edited by Wardog
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I have some photos of my uncle Frank Lionel Mahon standing with his friends in their uniform.  I am not sure how to copy and send  these but my husband does.  I hope that someone from the Great War Forum recognises a relative.  I will get them to this site somehow today or tomorrow - we are a bit ancient !!

 

Regards

Moira nee Mahon

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I'm sorry, I'm not understanding, how are you sure one of the unnamed graves is that of your relative? Regards, Paul.

Edited by Wardog
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I may have missed something or not be aware of some information that has been found. If I remember over 80 men are listed as being killed 01 Nov 1914 and there must have been a number of the wounded who died of wounds after being taken prisoner. Regards, Paul.

This is my distant relative if you could check your photographs.

 

2023-08-31.png

Edited by Wardog
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