14/367 Sgt Charlie BIRKETT M.M. 14th York and Lancaster Regiment 2nd Barnsley Pals
WOUNDED 29th June 1917
Charlie BIRKETT was born at Hunslet, Leeds on the 4th November 1896.
The 1901 census shows him living with his parents at 46 Cross Whitehouse Road, Hunslet, Leeds. By 1911 the family have moved to Barnsley and are shown to be living at 6 Salisbury St, Kensington Road, Barnsley at which time Charlie is employed as an errand boy.
Charlie was educated at St Mary’s School, Barnsley.
On the 1st December 1915, aged 19, he enlisted in the Army at Barnsley and was to become a Barnsley Pal. He was given service number 14/367 and placed in the 14th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment. His given address at this time being 52 Corporation Street, Barnsley and his occupation Plumber.
He first entered a theatre of war in the Mediterranean on the 28th December 1915 and then entered france on the 11th March 1916.
Charlie proved himself a proficient soldier rising through the ranks
17.06.16 – L/Cpl
01.07.16 – Cpl
01.07.16 – L/Sgt
23.02.17 – Sgt
09.05.17 – A/CSM
29.06.17 – Sgt
01.09.18 – 2Lt Border Regiment
On the 29th June 1917 he was wounded, gun shot wound to right leg and was hospitalised for a month. The 14th York Lancs had taken part in the attack to capture German positions at Gavrelle. The attack took place on the 28th June and was successfully carried out with very few casualties but the following day they were heavily shelled and took casualties of 12 killed, 45 wounded and 7 missing.
His award of the Military Medal was announced in the London Gazette 29th August 1917 so it is likely he was wounded whilst engaged in the action that saw him awarded the medal for bravery in the field.
On the 8th February 1918 he was accepted under commission to the 2nd officer cadet battalion at cambridge and appointed the rank of 2Lt with the Border regiment.
His given address at this time being 49 Church Street, Barnsley and his occupation Electrician.
He would marry Lucy BELL on the 22nd April 1919 at Barnsley.