LT. H. J. BRIERLEY. LANCS.FUS.

 

Horace James Brierley was born in Rocjdale on 13 February 1890.  Most of Horace’s biography can be gleaned from the entry in De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour. His parents Edgar Brierley and Catharine Lancashire were married in 1889 and Horace had two siblings: Philip Edgar (b. 1891) and Helen Nora (b. 1892).  Edgar was a barrister and then stipendiary magistrate in Rochdale and Horace followed him into the legal profession.

9th (Service) Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers was formed at Bury on 31 August 1914 as part of Kitchener’s New Army and came under orders of 34th Brigade, 11th (Northern) Division. They moved to Belton Park near Grantham and then in April 1915 to Witley Camp near Godalming in Surrey.  They sailed from Liverpool on 5 July 1915, going via Moudros to Suvla Bay, disembarking on 6 August 1915.

 

In April 1915, the British Empire forces, including Australians and New Zealanders, had managed to establish a foothold on the Gallipoli peninsula, but despite repeated attempts they had failed to strike out north of Helles.  A second landing was therefore planned for August, further north.  Command of the expedition was given to Sir Frederick Stopford, an elderly general with not battle experience whatsoever.  The initial landing was actually very successful, taking the Turks by surprise, but instead of pushing forward, Stopford chose to consolidate his position, giving the Turks time to organise a defence and counter-attack.  Losses were predictably heavy.  The Allies suffered approximately 18,000 casualties at Suvla Bay and at Anzac Cove, plus a further 3,500 at Helles.  Turkish forces suffered 18,000 casualties at Anzac Cove and anything from 9,000-20,000 at Suvla Bay.

 

On 7 August 1915, the Lancashire Fusiliers had 423 officers and men killed, including 68 from 9th Battalion.  Lt Horace James Brierley was among the fallen.  He was 25 years old.

 

Rank:  Lieutenant

Date of Death:  07/08/1915

Age:  25

Regiment/Service:  Lancashire Fusiliers, 9th Bn.

Grave Reference:  I. C. 16.

Cemetery:  HILL 10 CEMETERY

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