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Capt Arthur de Bells Adam (MC)
1885 - 1916

CPL David Wallace Crawford
1887 - 1916

Lce-Corpl John Joseph Nickle
1894 - 1916

Pte 17911 Morton Neill
1897 - 1916

Lieut Edward Stanley Ashcroft
1883 - 1918
Lieut Edward Stanley Ashcroft

Pte 41461 Harry Babut

  • Age: 22
  • From: Heywood, Lancs
  • Regiment: LABOUR CORPS
  • Died on Wednesday 24th July 1918
  • Commemorated at: Godewaersvelde British Cemetery
    Panel Ref: II.A.18
Harry was born in Heywood in the second quarter of 1896 the son of David Babut andhis wife  Mary (nee Chadwick). Both parents were born in Manchester.

The 1901 Census shows the family are living at 102 Starkey Street, Heywood. His father is a Tanner's Labourer. His siblings in the household were; Sarah E, Ethel, Alfred, Charles, James and Leonard

By 1911 the family have moved to 3 Rutland Street, Heywood. Harry is aged 15 and employed as an apprentice reed maker. 

His father died in the December quarter of 1911 aged 56.

Harry enlisted in Heywood. According to SDGW he joined the Cheshire Regiment as Private 39531 before transferring to the 19th Bn of The King's Liverpool Regiment as Private 39909. He subsequently transferred to the 70th Company of the Labour Corps as Private 41461. 

His brother James served in Gallipoli and the Heywood Advertiser of 09th November 1917 reported the following:


James Babut (27, single, 102 Starkey Street, Heywood, ring overlooker, class A) asked for exemption on domestic grounds. He stated that he had been for nearly 2 years on service at the Dardanelles, where he was wounded. Three brothers were now serving in France, and there was an invalid brother at home, his mother was a widow. Conditional exemption was allowed to February 1st.

With regard to the three other brothers referred to in the article as serving in France are Harry and the others are: 

His older brother Alfred  who served as #243686 KLR, and #6469 2/6th KLR (service records exist)

Older brother Leonard  who served as Pte #2776625 Manchester Regt

This leaves older brother Charles who was referred to as an invalid.

James, who was the subject of the article served as Corporal 936 in the Lancashire Fusiliers, and did not serve again after Gallipoli.

Harry was killed by a shell which also killed seven other men on 24th July 1918. He was 22 years of age and now rests at Godewaersvelde British Cemetery in France.

The CWGC have Harry's King's Liverpool Regiment service number on his headstone together with the White Horse of Hanover, rather than the Labour Corps details. They also state that he was transferred to a secondary unit, which was the Labour Corps.   

Harry's death was reported in the local press as follows:

Heywood Advertiser 16th Aug 1918

Private H. Babut

On Saturday Mrs Babut of 102 Starkey Street received official news that her son Private H. Babut was killed in action on July 24th, he was 23 years of age. Formerly he was employed by Mr Robert Parker, heald maker[part of a loom], Heywood. He attended St Luke's Church ,Heywood and his name is on the roll of honour there. The Rev. L. Rogers, a military chaplain, has addressed the following letter to Mrs Babut:-  It is with profound sorrow that I write to you with reference to the death of your son, Private H. Babut, which took place in the early hours of this morning (July 24th.) I expect that his commanding officer will write and give you all the details he can. It was my melancholy duty to lay him to rest in the military cemetery this evening. The funeral was very simple, but just as reverent as if it had taken place in one of the beautiful old churchyards of England. The whole service of our prayer book was used. A very large number of his comrades attended to pay their last respects to him, for he was held in very high esteem in his company. His chum was killed by the same shell, and they were laid side by side. Before we left the graveside we all joined in prayer that it might please our Heavenly Father to comfort you and give you strength to bear the heavy blow which has fallen upon you. His comrades united in asking me to convey their sympathy to you. Private Babut was killed instantaneously, and could not possibly have felt any pain. I am sure this will be a great consolation to you, I have ordered a cross to be erected over the grave.

Heywood Advertiser 16th Aug 1918

BABUT - In loving memory of Private Harry Babut,  killed July 24th 1918.

He never shunned his country's call,

But gladly gave his life, his all;

He died the helpless to defend,

A British soldiers noble end.

- Ever remembered by his Aunt Alice and cousins (Castleton)

Fondly I loved him, he is dear to me still,

But in grief I must bend to God's holy will.

My sorrow is great, my loss is hard to bear,

But angels, dear sweetheart, will guard you with care.

- Alice

Further newspaper reports of his death were contained in the Rossendale Free Press on 17/08/1918:

"Regret will be occasioned by the news of the death of Pte. Harry Clegg, 70th Company, and whose home was the Water Board Office, Rawtenstall. The news has been conveyed to Mrs Clegg in a letter from the C.O. of the company, from the Chaplain of the company and a comrade. The latter in his letter states:

"Poor Harold was killed instantly by a shell while asleep and therefore suffered no pain. A shell fell in his ---- at midnight on July 24th and killed 6 other comrades. I know sympathy won't heal your aching heart in your sad loss, but it will console you to know that all his section boys will dearly miss him, for we have lost a good comrade. He was always cheerful and willing. You have all my sympathy, and also from No.8 section boys. His close chum Harry was killed by the same shell. 
Harold always had a kind word for us all. I was chatting with him a few hours before he was killed, and he was then, as he always was, quite happy. You can rest assured that if we could have done anything for him at that time he would have received every attention, but it was no use, for the shell fell clean amongst seven of them" 

His close friend referred to in this letter was Harry Babut.

Soldiers Effects and Pension went to his mother Mary Ann.

Harry is commemorated on the Memorial at All Souls Church, Heywood.