1918-2008: Ninety Years of Remembrance

Soldier Record

Frank Thickett

Contributed by: Jack Buttery, on 2009-03-10

No portrait available
Rank
First Name Frank
Surname Thickett
Year of Birth 1892
Year of Death 1918
Regiment Manchester Regiment
Place of Wartime Residence Stockport, Cheshire

Frank's Story

Frank was the younger son of Lucy and the late Joseph Thickett

with three older siblings-John,Jane and Lily.Lily was my grandma.

Extracts from the 1/9th Batt.war diaries -Egypt, Gallipoli, France & Flanders. 1914/18

1908.The 3rd Volunteer Batt. became the 9th Territorial Battalion.Frank was a young member.

1914 Sept 10th. Forming part of 42 Division, sailed from Southampton with 4th East Lancs, 5th East Lancs and 10th Manchesters for Egypt. Nov 5th. War declared with Turkey.

1915. May 1st. Kantara Suez Canal. May 5th, Embarked on HMTS Audonia from Port Said to Dardanelles. May 9th. Arrived off Cape Helles. 1/9th Batt. landed at Sedd-el-Bahr under fire.

May 24th. C Company moved to forward advance positions (2/Lt

Jones killed). June 3rd to 24thDec. In front line many times at Eski, Vineyard,Nullah, Krithia Gully Ravine,Gully Beach and Geogheghans Bluff. Aug 7/8th. A successful & gallant stand made by "A"Company.First V.C won by the Division to Lt. W.T. Forshaw. Also two M.C,s & two D.C.M,s won by the Company.

Dec 28th. Embarked HMTS Redbreast for Mudros.

1916. Embarked to Alexandria.

1917. After two and a half years in the Near East, the Division left the harbour at Alexandria for the Western Front.March 15th.Arrived Marseilles with 5th East Lancs. By train to Pont Remy. April 28th. At Epehy, Brigade successfully advanced line.May 3rd. Took over sector 48th Div. May 6th. At Ronnsoy ,

Batt.established forward post under heavy machinegun fire.[Pte A Holden awarded bar for Military Medal].May 23rd.Relieved 20th Div. in newly captured sector running from canal-Du-Nord to a point south of Villers Plouich. June 1st. Orders to advance line by about 300yds.[Cpl.A.Eastwood and a patrol covered the working party and silenced a machine gun and snipers Femy Wood] The new line was completed by stated hour,6am. J 8th Relieved by58th Div. July 9Stationed atCoutcelles. Aug. 22nd. Entrained for Ypres. Sept.1st. During night, passed through Menin Gate on way to front line trenches.Took over sector from 15th Div. between Ypres-Menin railway and Frezenburg. Night of 11/12thattack on enemy blockhouse[PteT.M.Howard rescued an officer under severe machine gun& rifle fire.]Sept.18th Relieved by 9th Div. Moved to Poperinghe.Sept.26thTook over coastal sector at Nieuport,relieving 66thDiv. Oct.7th. Relieved by 41st Div.and took over St Georges sub-sector. Nov 19th.Relieved by 133rd French Div. Ordered to La Bassee. Nov.29th.Rieved 25thDiv. in the line.Nov. Frank returned to U.K. on leave. Married Emily Lomax of Stockport. Emily was a nurse at Cheadle Royal Hospital. 1918. Feb 11th. A successful trench raid on sector opposite Festubert.Capt. D.B.Stephenson,two officers and 97 men. Three men recommended for awards .Frank and 350202 Pte J Hibbert & 350367 Pte E Latham awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for silencing & capturing two machine guns. Feb 15th. Relieved by 55th Div. and withdrawn to 1st Corps reserve in Busnes-Burbure Fouquieres area. Feb. 19th. A number of Officers and men were posted to other Battalions of the Division and the remainder transferred to 198th Brigade 66th Division where they absorbed the 2/9th to form the 9th Manchesters. This transfer to the 9th Batt. of twelve officers and 250 other ranks included Frank. 198 Brigade was formed by 4th East Lancs, 2/5th East Lancs and 9th Manchester Battalions. 66th Div. X1X Corps, 5th Army

March 21st. On this day Frank fought his last battle. He was killed in action on the front line near Hargicourt N/W of St. Quentin on the first day of the last "Big Push" that the enemy were to make. There is no known grave

Frank is remembered with honour on the Manchester Regiment Memorial at the British Military Cemetery, Pozieres, France. Also at Denton, Manchester, Ashton-under-Lyne and Stockport War Memorials. Now also here, thanks to the BBC.

May he rest in peace.

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