Title - William Lambert

William Lambert died at his home at 54 Ranger Street, Accrington on Sunday, 27th November 1927. Having survived the 1914-1918 War, in which he saw much active service with the Accrington Pals (11th Bn. East Lancashire Regt.), his life was taken by pneumonia at the early age of 31.

His funeral, reported in the Accrington Observer & Times of 3rd December, was attended by workmates from the engineering works of Howard & Bullough's - Messrs. Cosgrove, Choyce, Leigh and Wilkinson - as well as his wife Gertrude, eldest son Stanley, parents John and Sarah, his sister Nellie, and other members of the family.

Obituary, 24k

William was born on 17th October 1896. Aged just 17 at the outbreak of war, he would have falsified his age to enlist in the Accrington Pals together with his cousins and workmates in September 1914. On 23rd February 1915, 15331 Pte. William Lambert left with the battalion for Caernarvon.

Although the record of his army service over the next 3 years remains to be discovered, it seems likely that William took part in one or more of the battalion's major actions at Serre, Oppy-Gavrelle and Ayette.

William and Gertrude Elizabeth Lambert, 26k

William's known history resumes with his marriage to Gertrude Elizabeth Cotton at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, Derby on 20th April 1918. On the marriage certificate, William described himself as a Private in the East Lancashire Regiment at Saltburn-on-Sea.

Saltburn at that time was the base of the 3rd Battalion, a reserve unit from which officers and men were sent out to replace casualties in the front-line battalions of the regiment. It is likely that William had been posted there after recovering from wounds.

At some point in the next 6 months William was again drafted overseas, for on 6th November 1918 - just five days before the Armistice - he was wounded in action. His wound - severe enough to require amputation of the left leg - was sustained during a costly attempt by the 1/5th Battalion to establish bridgeheads over the Sambre river east of the Forest of Morval.

In the few remaining years of his life, William was employed as a machinist in the cast iron roller department of Howard and Bullough's.

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