Arthur Bailey

2626 Sergeant Arthur Eric Baily
1/6th Battalion, The South Staffordshire Regiment

Arthur  was the son of Mr John Bailey and Mrs Susan Bailey of 13 High Street, Dawley. He was 23 at the time of his death.

Arthur had been educated at the Adams Grammar School, Newport and afterwards trained and became a member of the teaching profession following a course at the Goldsmith’s College. Arthur had taught for a time at both the Pool Hill and Malinslee Schools.

Judging by his army number Arthur was embodied around the 2nd September 1914 and had already seen some hard fighting by early 1916, most notably at the Hollenzollern redoubt in October 13th 1915

Arthur had come through the battle and in March 1916 was with his battalion in trenches at Neuville St. Vaast when according to the battalion war diary;

March 29th – Enemy shelled our trenches heavily from 2 p.m., Using howitzers and H.E. (High Explosive), and concentrating on O.64 and O.S.63 with H.E. and the ground between them with howitzers. Our artillery barrage operated very quickly and at 6.50pm we sprang a mine, which formed a crater on the left of B.4. The hole was occupied and partly consolidated.

The enemy then severely bombarded Payerne trench and O.63, O.64, O.S.63 and O.S.6 with H.E until approximately 8 pm from then on the situation became quieter and the work of repair and consolidation was pressed on with.

Arthur must have been killed in one of these bombardments because according to another Dawley man (Private Boycott) who was serving with him at the time, “ A German shell blew in the trench that he was in burying him and 4 other men, When they dug Arthur out he was already dead”

Arthur now lies buried in the Ecoivres Military Cemetery at Mont-st-Eloi in grave L.C.13.

His death was mentioned in the local Baptist newsletter (The Dawley News) and it was stated that a cross had been placed on his grave by a fellow Dawley soldier, probably the same Private Boycott that has already been mentioned.

Information supplied by Dave Shaw

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