Rossendale Branch - Lancashire Family History & Heraldry Society

Rawtenstall War Memorial Obituaries

Private Wilfred TODD  -  Private George TOLWORTHY  -  Private James TOLWORTHY
Private Francis TOMLINSON  -  Private Fred TOMLINSON  -  Private James TOMLINSON

Private Wilfred TODD - died 21st March 1918

No information available

Private George TOLWORTHY - died 28th March 1918

Unofficial information has been received by Mr. James H. Tolworthy, of 7 Cobden-street, Hareholme, of the death from gas poisoning of another of his sons, Pte. George Tolworthy, of the Machine Gun Corps. The news is conveyed in a letter from a captain of the company, who under date of April 1st has written:-

"My dear Mr. Tolworthy, - On behalf of all officers and men of my company, I tender you my deepest sympathy for your recent loss. Your son only joined my company two days before he was gassed, consequently we did not have time to be well acquainted, but I am sorry to have lost him. Again accept our deepest sympathy, and may your sorrow be lightened by the knowledge that your son died in the service of his country."

This up to yesterday was all the family had learned in regard to the fate of the soldier. He was 24 years of age, and has been in the Army since 1916, and in France since November of the same year. In October of last year, it may be remembered, he came home with the news of the death of his brother in France. His last furlough was at the end of January of the present year.

Prior to joining up Pte. Tolworthy was employed in the press-room at Sir H. W. Trickett's Ltd, Waterfoot. He was a scholar at St. John's Sunday School, Cloughfold, and was formerly in the choir at that church.

Source: R.F.P. 6th April 1918 p5 c5
Commonwealth War Graves Commission details
Private James TOLWORTHY - killed in action 31st October 1917
James Tolworthy

Official news has been received of the death in action of Private James Tolworthy, son of James Henry Tolworthy, of Cobden-street, Hareholme. The sad intelligence of his son's death had previously been received by Mr. Tolworthy from another of his sons who was on active service in France. The latter (Private George Tolworthy) had a trying experience and learned of the death of his brother under painful circumstances. A little over a fortnight ago Private George Tolworthy obtained 14 days of leave of absence, and knowing that his brother James was in the vicinity, went to the camp to tell him that he (George) was going home. When he got to the camp. on November 8th, he learned that his brother had been killed nine days before, that was on October 31st. George arrived home on the 10th inst. and informed his father of the sad loss.

Last weekend, the official notification of Pte. James Tolworthy's death was received, and the father also received the following letter from the Second Lieutenant of the late Private Tolworthy's company:-
Dear Mr. Tolworthy:- "It is with much regret that I write to tell you that your son, Private James Tolworthy, of the East Lancashire Regiment had been killed. He died at his post and his comrades erected a wooden cross on the place where he was buried. I have not been with the battalion long but I know that your son was very well liked by everyone and his death is much regretted by his comrades. His brother had just called to see him and was very much cut up on hearing the news. Before closing this letter I would like to add that the platoon paid the "Boche" with interest for your sons death. Please accept my sincere sympathy."

 Private Stratton of Bury-road, Rawtenstall also sent a letter to his wife saying that he was alongside Private Tolworthy when he fell and he was buried behind the lines.

Pte. James Tolworthy was in the East Lancashire Regiment, and was 22 years of age. Prior to joining up he was employed as a "cropper" in the felt department at Mr. Roland Rawlinson's Myrtle Grove Mill. He was of an extremely courteous and genial disposition and was highly respected by his workmates and by all with whom he came into contact.

He attended St. John's Church and Sunday school, Cloughfold, and his name is on the roll of honour there. A service to his memory is to be held in St. John's Church on Sunday morning at 11 a.m. (November 25th) to which relatives and all sympathising friends are invited.

Source: R.F.P. 24th November 1917 p8 c4
Commonwealth War Graves Commission details
Private Francis TOMLINSON - died 27th July 1916

Private Fred TOMLINSON - killed in action 27th July 1917

Official news has now been received of the death of Private Fred Tomlinson, formerly of 27 Entwistle Buildings, Bridleway, Newchurch. The first intimation of there husband's death was conveyed from a lieutenant of the South Lancashire Regiment, stating that Private Tomlinson had been struck by the fragment of shell and that he died instantly. This news, as stated above has now been officially confirmed.

The officer in his letter to Mrs. Tomlinson said:- "I greatly deplore his loss as he was one of my best men and was very popular with his comrades."

Private Tomlinson, who was 34 years of age, was a native of Wood Top, Rawtenstall, but had lived in Newchurch for about eight years, He was very much respected by a large circle of friends an both districts. As a boy and a young man he was associated with St. Mary's Church and Sunday School.

Prior to joining the colours he was employed as an edge cutter at the Newchurch Boot Company for which firm he had worked for a period of 15 or 16 years.

He joined up on the 14th of February of the present year and went out to France at the beginning of May. For about three weeks prior to his death he was attached to an Employment Battalion.

Source: R.F.P. 18th August 1917 p5 c5 - 25th August 1917 p8 c3
Commonwealth War Graves Commission details
Private James William TOMLINSON - killed in action 8th October 1917
James William Tomlinson

Private James William Tomlinson, a man well known both in the Waterfoot and Stacksteads district has been killed in action in France. The deceased soldier was a member of a family who lived for long periods in the Miller Barn district and was 36 years of age. His wife now resides at 11 Higher Tunstead and by the death of her husband she is left with eight children.

Private Tomlinson joined up on 14th August 1916, and went out to France in February of the present year with the Manchester Regiment.

In a letter to Mrs. Tomlinson the lieutenant of the regiment says Private Tomlinson was killed in action on the 8th inst. He did not suffer any pain as he died instantly, being buried by the explosion of a large shell near him. The letter goes on to say that in the line Private Tomlinson was "very sound and reliable and is missed very much by all who knew him."

The Captain of the regiment in another letter says Private Tomlinson conducted himself as a brave soldier and fulfilled his duties cheerfully and well. "He had been with me all the time", proceeds the captain "and I feel I have lost and old comrade. Take heart in his brave and loyal end. He has given his life that his country may be free. Those of us who are left will remember the sorrow these Huns have caused at home."

The Chaplain has also written to Mrs. Tomlinson expressing his deep sorrow at her loss. He says "I did not have the opportunity of laying the mortal remains of your husband to rest; it was only possible to bury him on the battle field with other comrades."

Source: R.F.P. 3rd November 1917 p8 c4 - 10th November 1917 p8 c3
Commonwealth War Graves Commission details