Home Page Home Page Home Page
Born: 1894, Bradford
Died: 3 May 1915, Ypres
Address: 6 Acre Lane, Eccleshill
Parents: Ben & Elvira
Siblings: Efkanah, Walter
Occupation: Bobbin sorter
Organisations/clubs: Eccleshill Congregational Church Sunday School; Boys’ Brigade
Rank: Bombadier
Rolls of Honour: Eccleshill; Le Touret
Regiment: Royal Field Artillery
John Ramsbottom
Bombardier John Ramsbottom had come through many of the major battles fought so far but his luck ran out finally on 13 May 1915 when he was hit by a bullet while digging trenches for a telephone wire at 5a.m. He was one month short of his 21st birthday. One of his comrades wrote to his mother at 5 Acre Lane, Eccleshill saying: ‘He passed away peacefully within two minutes. He was duly buried the same day with all due respect from his comrades and with full military honours. A nice quiet spot was chosen and I beg to assure you it
will not be neglected.’ A keen boxer, John Ramsbottom earned the distinction of being the best middleweight of his regiment. He was in the first contingent sent to France and fought in the battles of Mons, Marne, Aisne, la Bassee, Neuve Chapelle and Ypres. Writing about Neuve Chapelle he said: ‘I have often heard people speak about hell but I think I was in it in this battle.’
He was formerly a member of the Boys’ Brigade attached to Eccleshill Parish Church. His was the first death among the 60 members of Eccleshill Congregational Sunday School who had joined the forces. In the 1911 census John, aged 15, was a bobbin sorter, living at home with his parents, Ben, a self-employed fire wood dealer, and Elva. Also in the six-roomed house were his brothers Efkanah (14), a spinning mill jobber, and Walter (12) a bobbin slugger. Also present
were William Walker, described as a 20-year-old, unemployed labourer relative and boarder Eli Slingsby, a clogger. Ben and Elva had been married 16 years and as well as the three sons had had another child who died. In a letter from the trenches to their parents, Efkanah wrote: “I have been to see Cyril Styles several times and the other day he gave me the cutting out of the newspaper telling about my brother’s death at the front. It is hard lines for him after going through the biggest engagements to be snapped off by a German sniper.”
Eccleshill Roll of Honour Eccleshill Roll of Honour Eccleshill Roll of Honour Men Who Served Home Page Men Who Served Home Page Men Who Served Home Page