Private John Cecil Doughty 15/286

Private John Cecil Doughty

Born. 1/10/1893, Farnley, Leeds.
Killed in action. 1/7/1916, age 22.

John Cecil Doughty and Sister Alice were living with their mother and stepfather at 34 Cobden Road, New Blackpool, Wortley, Leeds (their father had died in September 1897 aged 32, John and Alice were his only children). John attended New Farnley Council School and played fife in the New Farnley Fife and drum band. In 1904, aged 11, he and the band had accompanied the carriage of the then newly installed Lord Mayor Robert Armitage (owner of Farnley Ironworks) after his installation ceremony at the Town Hall.
In later years he captained Farnley cricket club's second team and was a member of Wortley Working Mens' institute and Farnley Parish Church.
Prior to enlistment he was working as a clerk with the Farnley Ironworks

He joined the "Pals" on 9th of September 1914 and was posted to D Company, serving with the Pals at Colsterdale, Egypt and France. When the Pals attacked Serre on 1/7/1916, John and two other Farnley Pals, John Richard Hill, 'D' Company and Arthur Jackson of 'B' Company were reported missing in action. Other Farnley men who had joined the pals were Willie Rudkin and William McNeil.

Armley and Wortley News 14/7/1916:

"No news has been received from John Doughty, Cobdon Road or Richard Hill, Peel Street both members of D Company Leeds Pals, their families are very anxious about their fate."

Yorkshire Evening Post 15/7/16:
"Only son of the late J. Doughty of Farnley and Mrs Taylor of Cobdon Road, Lower Wortley, is reported to have been killed. He was 22 years of age and was a clerk with the Farnley Iron Company."

Armley and Wortley News 21/7/16:
"John Dopughty and Richard Hill, both of the Leeds Pals, have been reported by local soldiers to have been killed on July 1. Both were 22 years of age. In no case has official intimation been received"

Armley and Wortley News 11/3/1917:
"Privates J Doughty and J R Hill, both of Farnley, previously reported missing, are now reported killed"

In the spring of 1917 when the Germans withdrew from the old British front line, many soldiers searched the battlefield in an attempt to find comrades who had been declared missing, especially those lost on 1/7/1916. John's remains must have been found, as it was at this time that his mother received official conformation of his death.

He is buried in Queens Cemetary, Puisieux, France, and commemorated on the Farnley War memorial.

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