Harry Lilliman was born on 5th April 1887 to Robert and Margaret Lilliman. He was baptised at Old Whittington Church in April 1887.
(The Baptism record below was damaged by fire but the following entry to Harrys was April 25th and we can only assume he was baptised in April too).
Robert and Margaret were married at St Thomas’s Church Brampton 15th January 1883. Their first child, George W, was born in June 1884. As you can see from the Baptism entry in 1887 the family were living at Station Lane and Roberts occupation was given as Platelayer.
By 1891 when the census was taken the family were still living at 306 Station Lane. Robert’s occupation is given as a Stationary Engine Driver. (A stationary engine is an engine whose framework doesn’t move they could be used to drive pumps, generators or machinery in a factory). According to the census Robert and Margaret now had three children. George 6 years old and attending school, Harry 3 years old and Fred 1 year old.
On 16th February 1891 Harry started at Websters Endowed Mixed School. His address was given as Station Road. However, he left there 21st April 1893 to start at New Whittington School. Below is a copy of the School Admission Register and Log Book, the entry for Harry is last on the page.
The 1901 as the census below shows the family were living at 85 Station Road and as can be seen there were now four other children Blanche (9) Elsie (6) John (4) and Edith (1). George and Harry are both now labourers in an Iron Foundry (Probably Sheepbridge Coal and Iron Co).
Station Road started at Sheepbridge Station at the bottom of Whittington Hill.
When the 1911 census was taken Harry (unlike his younger brother Fred) was still living at home.
Harry was now an Iron Pipe Maker probably working at the same place as his father, Staveley Coal and Iron Co. Harrys brother Fred was also working there in 1911.
5th October 1912 was an important day for Harry, he married Mary Agnes Robinson at Old Whittington Parish Church.
Mary came from Brierley Bridge in Old Whittington. Brierly Bridge separated Sheepbridge from Unstone, the ‘Bridge’ was across the River Drone.
25th January 1914 Harry and Mary welcomed their daughter, Agnes. She was baptised at Whittington Parish Church on 18th February 1914. As you can see from the Baptism record the family were living on Sheffield Road in 1914 and Harry was now a Pipe Rammer. Little did the family know that within a few months Britain would be at War and before long Harry would be away from home fighting.
Harry like his brother Fred, joined the 9th Battalion Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) Service Number 17844.
Cap Badge of the 9th Cameronians
Unfortunately, like Freds record Harrys record must have been destroyed in 1940 so I cannot check when or where they enlisted. However, by the number sequence Harry was the first to enlist.
According to Harrys Medal and Award Roll he arrived in France 29th June 1915.
According to the Medal Roll by the time they left for France Harry had been promoted to a Lance Corporal.
The 9th Battalion saw action at the Battle of Loos from 25th September to 15th October 1915. They also took part in the Battle of the Somme.
The Battle of the Somme, also known as the Somme Offensive, was one of the largest battles of the First World War. Fought between July 1 and November 18 1916, near the Somme River in France, it was also one of the bloodiest military battles in history. On the first day alone, the British suffered more than 57,000 casualties, and by the end of the campaign the Allies and Central Powers would lose more than 1.5 million men.
The 9th Battalion were involved in the Battle for Montauban and Bernafay Wood which took place between 1st and 8th July 1916.
Harry would more than likely have then been involved in the Battle of Bazentin Ridge near Longueval. Further information on the Battle can be found here . Corporal Harry Lilliman was killed on 14th July 1916 he was 29 years old. By the time Harry died on 14th July 1916 he had been promoted to Corporal, a more responsible position, he would be in charge of a Section in an infantry battalion.
The following War Diary entry for 14th July 1916 states that the Battalion had many casualties.
Transcript of the War Diary of the 9th Battalion The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) written by Lt Col H A Fulton Commanding 9th (Service) Bn Cameronians (Scottish Rifles)
12.7.16 Bn remained in Billon Valley awaiting orders. ‘C’ Coy went to Montauban and relieved Coy of 10th Argyles.
13.7.16 Bn moved from Billon Valley at 9pm to take up position in front of Longueval.
14.7.16 Bn lay in valley till 3.25am then attacked German Front line trenches and took them and pushed on and took 2nd line. Many casualties of a slight nature – arms and legs. Adjutant and S.M. killed. New position consolidated and held. Bombing party made up from various units to number of 60, bombed enemy in part of 2nd line trenches. About 80 Germans surrendered as soon as they were bombed. Our casualties were – 8 officers and over 200 other ranks.
Harry’s body was never found like many of his comrades. He is commemorated on Thiepval Memorial France.
‘The memorial commemorates more than 72,000 men of British and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave, the majority of whom died during the Somme offensive of 1916.’
More information about Thiepval can be found here
Harry was awarded the 1914-15 Star, The Victory Medal and British war Medal.
He is remembered on Old Whittington War Memorial along with his younger brother Fred who died on 3rd July 1916 on the Somme Battlefields. They are also remembered on Newbold War Memorial (at the junction of Newbold Road and St Johns Road).
They are both commemorated on the Scottish National War Memorial details can be found here