Blencowe Albert E 1893

Albert Edward Blencowe  [4439]

1893-1977

Father Nm: Charles (Leonard) Blencowe [3087] [6007] born 1871 died 1956 Whitchurch  Shrops ; Oldest Known Ancestor William Blincow abt 1702 Bicester.

Mother Nm: Margaret Winifred O’Hara [10799] 1868-1948.

Marriage Dt:1920 to Cicely Challenor, Whitchurch S. Vol. 6a Page, 2034.

click to enlarge

K comments: WW1: Albert Edward was one of 5 brothers who served. Harry and Francis with the Kings Shropshire LI, Percy Driver RHA died of wounds 1917, and  George with the Kings Royal Rifle Corps.

WW2: Nephew Dennis James was killed at Arnhem in 1944 whilst with the RAF. Nephews  John Leonard was with the Manchester Regt. , Robert Harry was a Sergeant in the RAF during and was later awarded an MBE. , Francis Jesse was with the Royal Artillery, and Bryan Henry served with Royal Army Ordnance Corps.

Son Ivor Eric served as a Sapper with the Royal Engineers just after WW2.

Spouse comments: Cicely Challenor 25.6.1895 died 1958 Chester

Children: Envis 1921, Gerald Edward 1927, Ivor Eric 1929-1954

(Research): GR[B] Whitchurch Sept 1893 JD

1901 Census 43 Yardington St, Whitchurch
  1. Blencowe Albert Son 7
  2. Blencowe Charles Head Baker & Confectioner 31
  3. Blencowe Charles Son 6
  4. Blencowe Francis Son 5
  5. Blencowe George Son 3
  6. Blencowe Harry Son 1
  7. Blencowe Catherine Dau 8
  8. Blencowe Margaret Wife Bread Maker 31
  9. Blencowe Percy Son 4
  10. Blencowe William Son 9
1911 Census 30 Bargates The Gray Hound Whitchurch
  1. Blencowe Albert Son Apprentice Plumber 17
  2. Blencowe Charles Head Baker 42
  3. Blencowe Margaret Wife 43
  4. Blencowe Charles Son Errand Boy Saddlers 16
  5. Blencowe Frank Son Post Office Telegraph Messenger 15
  6. Blencowe George Son 13
  7. Blencowe Harry Son M 1899 Whitchurch 12
  8. Blencowe Margaret Wife 43
  9. Blencowe Percy Son 14
  10. Blencowe William Son Labourer Iron Foundry 18
ICON ONLINE WAR GALLERY KSLI

Online War Photo Album

King’s Shropshire Light Infantry

WW1

Blencowe Albert Edward, 1893, Whitchurch, Corporal, 1746, 200318, 4th Bn., 6th Bn. King’s Shropshire Light Infantry.

1913-1917

Albert probably enlisted in Feb.1913 into the 4th KSLI based on his regimental number (source Paul Nixon). Thus he was serving in the Territorials at the outbreak of the war.

It is highly likely then that Albert accompanied the battalion when it went to the Far East in October 1914.

Albert spent a somewhat idyllic time in the Far East (Rangoon, Singapore and Hong Kong) with the 1/4th KSLI but the reality of the war eventually came in early 1917 when the battalion was sent to the United Kingdom for redeployment to the Western Front.

1917
  • Jul. Returning via Ceylon and South Africa the battalion was deployed immediately to France in July 1917, where it was attached to the 63rd (Royal Naval) Division near Arras.

  • 31st Jul.- 6th Nov. Third Battle of Ypres. Moved to the Ypres Salient to take part in the great Passchendaele Offensive and suffered 130 casualties on its first real day in action.

Note: It appears that in 1917 Albert was wounded or got very sick as he has one medical record that shows he was at one point admitted to 2nd General Hospital in Le Havre.

2nd General Hospital Le Havre was situated in the Casino Lechin
1918
  • 10th-11th Apr. Messines. The battalion fought around Messines during the great German Spring offensive of 1918.

  • 6th Jun. The capture of Bligny Hill. After Messines the battalion was then moved southwards to support French operations in the Soissons region; its greatest moment came in the capture of Bligny Hill on 6th June 1918, for which feat the battalion—reduced to company strength by then—was awarded the Croix de Guerre Avec Palme.

Bligny Hill map
Location of Bligny in the Soissons Sector.

The medal Roll for Albert shows the following sequence of Regimental units for Albert was

  1. 4th Bn. KSLI.

  2. Infantry Base Depot.

  3. 6th SLI.

The periods are not dated so based on the evidence of the Croix de Guerre it looks to me what we have is sometime after 6th June 1918 Albert spent four spells with the 6th SLI. Possibly periods of attachment as the 6th was a non-TA unit and the BWM and Vic. Medals are definitely awarded on the TF sheet ie 4th SLI.

Sources
  1. K.S.L.I. History.

  2. Article was written by Graham Wilson about Albert E Blencowe and The Croix de Guerre.

Medals

The Photograph of Albert Edward Blencowe’s actual medals and Bligny cockade, photo provided by the owner Graham Wilson who has also written the history of the Croix de Guerre awarded to the KSLI regiment.

Shown in the first illustration are the First World War medals of 200318 Corporal Albert E. Blencowe, 1/4th Battalion, King’s Shropshire Light Infantry (KSLI), consisting of the British War Medal 1914-1920, the Victory Medal and the Territorial Force War Medal 1914-1919, all named to Albert Blencowe as a member of ‘1/4 KSLI’. Also displayed with Blencowe’s medals is a cockade made of green and red striped ribbon. This is the ‘Bligny Cockade’ of 1/4th KSLI, a hard-earned distinction from the Great War and commemorates a rare unit award of the Croix de Guerre 1914-1918 to a British unit.” source Graham Wilson

Croix-De-Guerre-Francis-Browne
This is the Croix-De-Guerre awarded to the Battalion

4th (Territorial) Battalion KSLI: Bligny and the Croix de Guerre.

Croix de Guerre medal and ribbon. In June 1918, the 4th (Territorial) Battalion of the K.S.L.I. was an award of tan unusual distinction. The “unit award” in the form of the French Croix-de-Guerre Avec Palme for its gallantry in seizing the important Bligny Hill. The 4th (Territorial) Battalion of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry had an interesting war career by the summer of 1918. Mobilised in August 1914, it spent three years in the Far East on the type of routine imperial garrison duty designed to free Regular battalions for more active war service. Its stay in Rangoon, Singapore and Hong Kong was a much more pleasant experience than that of the Regular and War Service battalions of the K.S.L.I.

Territorial Force War Medal

His medal entitlement includes the Territorial Force War Medal (TFWM), the qualifying criteria for which were quite prescriptive. To qualify for the medal a soldier had to either be a serving member of the Territorial Force (TF) on 4 August 1914 OR a former member of the TF who had completed four or more years’ service prior to 4 August 1914 and rejoined the TF prior to 30 September 1914 AND volunteered prior to 30 September 1914 to service outside the United Kingdom OR actually served outside the United Kingdom between 4 August 1914 and 11 November 1918 AND was not eligible for the 1914 Star or the 1914-15 Star. The TFWM, in fact, replaces the 1914 Star and 1914-15 Star for members of the TF who served outside the UK between 4 August 1914 and 31 December 1915 but did not serve in an operational theatre covered by those stars.

1918 Absent Voter Lists

Address as 30 Bargates, Whitchurch (it spells his name incorrectly as Blencoe & regimental number incorrect 220318).

Given the above information, it is possible that Albert stayed in the KSLI after the war and his periods with the 6th Bn. was this service. Note there is no discharge date on his records.

After the War

1977 Death age 84 years

Vale Royal, Cheshire, Volume: 33, Page: 1104.

Gallery

Note: there are 2 service records for this man that exist that are not shown in this gallery for copyright reasons.

4 KSLI in Singapore, 1915.
4th Kings Shropshire Infantry in Singapore 1915
4th Bn in Far East C 1916
Albert most likely in this battalion photo
4th Bn in Far East C 1916
Source https://www.facebook.com/KSLI.Battlefields.tours
1656 Pte. Ernest Edward, Tipton 1-4th K.S.L.I.
A comrade from the 1/4th Bn that went to the far east.1656 Pte. Ernest Edward, Tipton 
Source: https://www.facebook.com/KSLI.Battlefields.tours/photos
Albert probably enlisted in February 1913 into the 4th KSLI based on his regimental number (source Paul Nixon). Thus he was serving in the Territorials at the outbreak of the war. 
It is highly likely then that Albert accompanied the battalion when it went to the Far East in October 1914.
Albert spent a somewhat idyllic time in the Far East (Rangoon, Singapore and Hong Kong) with the 1/4th KSLI but the reality of the war eventually came in early 1917 when the battalion was sent to the United Kingdom for redeployment to the Western Front.
1782 Pte. Sidney, Jackson, M.M, of Wrockwardine Wood 1-4th K.S.L.I.
Comrade 1782 Pte. Sidney, Jackson, M.M, of Wrockwardine Wood, photographed with wife or girlfriend prior to from the 1/4th Bn that went to the far east.
Source: https://www.facebook.com/KSLI.Battlefields.tours/photos
Soldiers crossing the Marne
British troops crossing the Marne
Soldiers crossing a bridge over the Marne, France, during World War I. This photograph shows a company of soldiers, led by their officers, marching across a wide iron bridge over the Marne. The men are carrying their full kit and are not wearing steel helmets, so this is a normal troop movement, not part of an engagement.
 
The company’s transport carts and the officers’ riding horses form the rear of the column, an interesting reminder that motor transport was still relatively unimportant.
 
[Original reads: ‘OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPH TAKEN ON THE BRITISH WESTERN FRONT IN FRANCE. British troops crossing the Marne.’]
 
digital.nls.uk/74547636
Screen Shot 2018-06-23 at 9.22.18 pm.png
Bligny and the beautiful country around its hill. Photo Flickr member
Bligny Hill Marne
Map of Bligny Hill and Operations – During the year 1918 the Germans made tremendous efforts to carry this position, the loss of which would have meant the fall of Rheims, leaving Epernay and Chalons-sur-Marne unprotected. Although held to the east of Mountain, they obtained important successes on the west, where they reached the Marne, while in May they occupied the Woods of Courton and Le Roi. In July they crossed the Marne and advanced as far as Montvoisin, on the road to Epernay. Very fierce fighting took place, especially to the north-west of the Mountain at Bouilly,  Bligny, St. Euphraise and Vrigny. These positions, and Hill 240 to the west of Vrigny, were several times lost and recaptured by the Allied troops under General Berthelot, French,Italian and British, who fought there side by side. Vrigny was taken by the Germans on May 30, but retaken by the Allies on June 1 at the point of the bayonet. 
Battle of the Marne
The valley of the Vesle near Fismes inundated by the Germans to increase its defensive strength. In the right background is seen the crest of the Marne plateau. (French official photograph.)
Image 7 - CdeG Presentation 1922
Croix de Guerre Presentation in 1922 General Berthelot presents the Croix de Guerre to 4 KSLI: the Quarry, Shrewsbury, 3 June 1922

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We survived – some of A Company of the 4th Battalion of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry in 1918. These are some of the survivors of the Battle of Bligny

The Casino used as No 2 General Hospital Le Havre (IWM Q10560)
2 General Hospital Ward 3 Quai DEscale Q10557
2 General Hospital Ward 3  Q10557 10th -13th Sept. Note another Blencowe Albert William Blincow 1899 Hawke Bn. transferred to No 2 General Hospital Le Havre, condition to severe to be transported. Died 13 Sept 1918 cause GSW Spine Nephritis
4th KSLI Officers and NCO's
4th KSLI 1918 Officers and NCO’s
KSLI Soldier
KSLI Soldier