Thursday, June 01, 2017

205445 Private Joseph Henry Richards, 11th East Yorkshire Regt

Private J H Richards was a patient at Beechland House in June 1918.  His name appears on a page shared with three other men: 235377 Private A Wearing of the 3rd Worcestershire Regiment, 8451 Private Joseph Spruce of the 8th North Staffordshire Regiment and Private Joseph R Fish, an American serviceman from the 86th Aero Squadron.  At the top of the page there is a date: 20th June 1918.

Private Richards’ entry reads:

Pte J H Richards
11 East Yorkshires’

Wounded Feb 21st 1918 Nr Lens

He is possibly Joseph Henry Richards who, at the time the 1901 census was taken, was living at number 2, St Andrews Square, Hull.  The household comprised: Thomas Richards (head, married, aged 45, a labourer on the docks), Elizabeth Richards (wife, aged 39) and their five children: Elizabeth (aged 15, working as a weaver), John Richards (aged 11), Joseph (aged eight), Henrietta Richards (aged six) and Charles E Richards (aged two).  The children and their parents had all been born in Hull.

Joseph was conscripted into the army on 1st March 1917 and his entry in Nurse Oliver’s album tells us that he was wounded near Lens on 21st February 1918.  He was discharged from the army on 24th July 1919.  His entry in the Silver War Badge Roll at The National Archives in London gives his age as 26 on 9th August 1919.

The number on his medal index card is 205445 which would appear to be one of the block of numbers issued in 1917 to the 4th East Yorkshire Regiment (Territorial Force).  If this is the same man it suggests that he initially enlisted with the 4th Battalion but was transferred later to the 11th Battalion.  This was formed in Hull on 2nd September 1914, by Lord Nunburnholme and the East Riding TF Association.  It was commonly known as the Hull Tradesmen's Battalion and from June 1915 was attached to the 92nd Brigade in the 31st Division.

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