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Born: 1884, Eccleshill
Died: 26 August 1918
Buried: Meaulte Military Cemetery
Address: 12 Bourne Street, Thackley
Parents: James Ralph Stanley & Eliza Dorothy, nee Haxby
Spouse: Gertrude, nee Smith
Siblings: Marguerite, Florence, Ralph
Occupation: Textile Manufacturer’s agent
Rank: Sec Lieut
Rolls of Honour: Holy Trinity, Idle
Children: Two
Regiment: Royal Garrison Artillery
Harold Vivian Atchison
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We first read about Harold’s war in the Shipley Times & Express of 7 July 1916: Mr Harold Atchison of Thackley, who joined the Royal Garrison Artillery a couple of months ago, has given evidence that he is a smart recruit and he has already been given special duties. He now occupies the rank of acting bombardier. Before joining the forces this promising soldier was a platoon commander in the Bradford City Volunteers. He is in trainings at Stallingboro’. In 1917, Harold suffered two blows in a short space of time. On 6 July the paper reported the death of his mother due to heart failure and less than a month later, on 3 August 1917, came the news that his brother Pte Ralph Atchison had been killed in action. “He was 25 years of age and was a very promising young man. His genial disposition made him exceedingly popular amongst the people with whom he came into contact.”
Ralph Atchison Ralph Atchison Ralph Atchison
On 31 August 1917, Harold was one of seven soldiers featured in an gallery of the serving family members of his father-in-law, W H Smith
On 30 August 1918, the Shipley Times & Express published under the headline JOY TO SORROW: Mrs Atchison of Bourne Terrace, Thackley, had two letters on Wednesday morning from her husband, Harold Atchison, an artilleryman, stating that he was all right though wounded. In the afternoon she received a telegram officially announcing his death. His mother died fourteen months or so ago and a few weeks later his only brother was killed in action. That was followed up with another story on 6 September:
It now transpires that death from wounds of Sec-Lieut Harold Atchison of Bourne Terrace, Thackley, occurred on 26th August. Aged 34, he leaves a wife (the daughter of Mr W H Smith of Eccleshill) and two children. He was in partnership with Mr Haxby in his father’s business as stuff merchant in Drake Street, Bradford and previous to joining the colours he was a member of the Bradford City Volunteer Force. His younger brother, Ralph, was killed in action just over a year ago. He was connected with the Idle Parish Church. And a week later we read:
Capt A W Brown of West Lyn, Thackley and Assistant Director of National Service, Hull, writes: “Lieutenant H V Atchison, RGA, whose death in action is announced, will be well remembered by the two or three thousand men who passed through the Bradford Volunteer Force in the early days of its formation. “He was associated with me in the secretariat and displayed a genius for organisation such as I have rarely met. “He was strong in mind and body and was never dismayed either by the nature or size of a problem. “He devoted his days and evenings
during the best part of a year to building up the Volunteer movement and also held rank as platoon commander. “Although he could have obtained a commission in the army, he joined up as a private in the RFA and worked his way up by sheer merit to commissioned rank. “He was the soul of honour. He died a gallant death while standing directing the guns of his battery. “His only brother was killed in France a few months ago. His many friends will deeply sympathise with his wife and two children.”
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