FOR GEORGE BATES
Bates married Amelia Page on 6th June 1910, at the Wesleyan
Chapel in Snargate Street, Dover. Their son, Leslie, was born
four years later.
They had been married just over seven years
when George was killed on 3rd October 1917, near Gheluvelt, Belgium, during the Battle
An account in The Queen's Own Royal West Kent
Regiment 1914-1919, by C T Atkinson, states,
Ridge Wood, the battalion moved forward, and on the night
of October 2nd/3rd took over the right of the Fifth Division's
new frontage, SE of Veldhoek. The relief was much delayed by
heavy hostile shelling, but was at last accomplished, the
battalion's right resting on the Menin Road ...
Hardly had the battalion settled down into
its trenches before a heavy bombardment opened all along its
line ... It was misty, and at that early hour, between 5 and
6am, the light was none too good, and the Germans, though
received with a hot fire, managed to penetrate to the trenches
at several points, only
be immediately ejected, leaving dead and prisoners behind. ...
Half an hour later the Germans returned to
the attack .... [The defences had been re-organised and
strengthened]. Moreover the light was now better and this time
the Germans were stopped 50 yards short of our wire. Their
casualties were heavy [and increased as they were sniped].
"C" company had over 20 casualties, "A"
(Captain Cobb) on the left came off better with only 7 ....But
as the day wore on the tale of casualties rose as the enemy's
artillery increased. (Note from the war diary: "The
enemy shelled our positions at intervals during the day.")
"B" company, in support trenches south of the Menin Road, caught
the worst of this shelling and figured largely amongst the 100
casualties on the day's list."
above right: marriage
certificate of George and Amelia Bates
above left: certificate of death for man dying while on service
in the war of 1914-1921
George's wife, Amelia, was said to have remained
downhearted, while their son and only child,
Leslie, grew up fatherless. George had
many in his family to mourn: here are his
left to right: Hettie, May,
Nan (front), Lizzie, Millie, Lottie
Here are George's brothers:
left to right: Ted, Horace,
Jim, Fred, Harry, with Jack in front, and George
himself on the far right.
grandson wonders if the image of George was
inserted after the picture was taken - perhaps
even after George was killed?
Two Visits and
with thanks to Peter Bates