1918-2008: Ninety Years of Remembrance

Soldier Record

John Cross

Contributed by: Mary Connor, on 2008-11-13

Corporal John Cross
First Name John
Surname Cross
Year of Birth 1877
Year of Death 1916
Regiment Royal Northumberland Fusiliers
Place of Wartime Residence Willington, Durham

John's Story

My grandfather John Cross was a miner at Brancepeth Pit. He volunteered on 29th October 1914 and joined the 1st Battalion of the Tyneside Irish Brigade, (NF) After training in Alnwick and Salisbury he went to France in 1916. He was the Pioneer Corporal of B Company. He was killed on 1st July at the Somme. His name is on the Thiepval Memorial. His body was never found. He left a wife and 4 children. His wife Mary Elizabeth lost two brothers and a nephew during the war. She had to manage on a pension of 6 shillings per week and 1 shilling and 6 pence

for each child. She supplemented this meagre allowance by baking bread for neighbours and in taking in washing. As mining was a reserved occupation, John need not have joined up. His wife and his family paid a high price for his patriotism. A volunteer at the age of 37,after a recruitment rally to form a Pals Battalion.

Other memories

James Connor, Willington County Durham 2008-11-18

John Cross had no known grave. My wife Mary, and I found his name on the Thiepval Memorial in March 1978. We also found the name of John's brother-in-law James Benedict Harvey, who, like John, was killed on 1st July 1916.

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Mary Connor, Willington 2008-11-21

John Cross was the brother-in-law of Michael and James Benedict Harvey. John and James were killed on 1st July 1916 in the Battle of the Somme. Michael died of gas poisoning at home 24th January1919. They were all in the Tyneside Irish Brigade (Northumberland Fusiliers)

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