Private James Edward Boardley Allott, 300040, Duke of Wellington's (West Riding) Regiment, 2nd/4th Battalion
James Edward Boardley Allott was born in Ossett in 1894, the son of George W. B. Allott and his wife Mary (nee Batty) who had married on July 2nd 1893 at South Ossett Parish Church. In 1911, James now aged 17, was living on The Green, Ossett in a three-roomed house with parents George William Boardley Allott and his mother Mary with another four siblings. James Allott was the eldest child in the family and worked as a bricklayer’s labourer like his father, George William Boardley Allott who died, aged 57, in 1916.
James Allott died of wounds on the 25th April 1917, aged 23, whilst serving in France & Flanders. He had transferred to the Duke Wellington's (West Riding) Regiment, 2nd/4th Battalion, having formerly served with the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (KOYLI), with the service number 271051. His War service record appears not to have survived. Allott was posthumously awarded the Victory and British medals.
The "Ossett Observer" 1 had this report of Private Allott's death: "According to a telegram received on Thursday evening from the Army Records Office, York, Private James Edward Allott (23), of the West Riding (Duke of Wellington's) Regiment, whose widowed mother lives near the top of Healey Road, at the Green, Ossett, has died in hospital in France from the effects of gunshot wounds in the jaw. Deceased, who used to follow the occupation of a bricklayer, and who was employed by Mr. Mark Senior, contractor, of Ossett, joined the army in January last year, and went to the fighting area in time to take part in the "big push" last July, when he sustained a shrapnel wound on the right hand. He was in hospital in England, and visited home, returning to the front just after Christmas. Only yesterday morning his mother had received a letter, in deceased's hand-writing, stating that he had been wounded, taken to hospital, and was doing so nicely that she need not trouble over him.
Deceased's father, who completed 18 years service with the army, died since the deceased joined the forces. He was known to many as a former instructor of the gymnasium, which for several years was conducted in connection with Holy Trinity Church Schools."
Formed at Halifax in September 1914 as a home service ("second line") unit and then moved to Derbyshire. 1st March 1915: came under orders of 186th Brigade in 62nd (2nd West Riding) Division. Moved to Thoresby Park (Ollerton) in May 1915. Moved in October 1915 to Retford, November 1915 to Newcastle, January 1916 to Salisbury Plain, June 1916 Halesworth, October 1916 to Bedford and then landed in France in January 1917 and were mobilised for war and landed in France and engaged in various actions on the Western front including; the Operations on the Ancre, the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line, the first attack on Bullecourt (part of the Arras offensive), the German attack on Lagnicourt (part of the Arras offensive). James Allott was most likely wounded during or after the first Battle of Bullecourt on the 10/17th April 1917 in which the 62nd (2nd West Riding) Division and the Australians were heavily involved in the fighting.
James Allott is interred in Boulogne Eastern Cemetery 2 grave reference IV. C. 26. in the Pas de Calais area of France. Boulogne, was one of the three base ports most extensively used by the Commonwealth armies on the Western Front throughout the First World War. Boulogne and Wimereux formed one of the chief hospital areas. It is likely therefore that James Allott was wounded in action and brought to Boulogne for hospital treatment, but sadly succumbed to his injuries.
1. "Ossett Observer", 5th May 1917