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Person Details
Langley Mill Derbyshire
George Arthur was born in 1875 at Langley Mill and was the son of John and Dorothy Woolley of Codnor Derbyshire. George Arthur married his wife Martha Hemstock Hope in 1895 their marriage was recorded in the Basford registration district, they went on to have 8 children, sadly 1 died in infancy or early childhood, their children were Matilda b1898, John Thomas b1900, Dorothy Hannah b1901, James Otto born 1st March 1903, Frank born 14th October 1907, Agnes born 20th July 1909 and Edith Belle Elmore Woolley born 31st August 1910. In the 1911 census the family lived at Alma, Selston and are shown as George Arthur 34 years a coal miner road man, he is living with his wife Martha 36 yrs and their children, Matilda 13 yrs Dorothy 10 yrs, James Otto 8 yrs, Agnes 1 year of age and Edith 6 months old. They later lived at Church Lane Bagthorpe, Jacksdale and his widow was awarded a pension of 30 shillings a week which commenced on 4th December 1918.
He was a miner (road man) in 1911. Worked at Pinxton Colliery
22 Jul 1917
2002040 - CWGC Website
177th Tunnelling Coy Royal Engineers
Corporal George Arthur Woolley, enlisted in October 1914 at Nottingham, he initially served with the service number 17528 in the Sherwood Foresters Regiment . In February 1915 he joined the 177th Tunnelling Company Royal Engineers. He was seriously wounded on 11th May and returned to England by September he had returned to France He was killed in action on 22nd July 1917 and is buried in R. E. Grave, Railway Wood.
Article published on 17th August 1917 in the Ripley and Herald News :- “CORPL.G. A. WOOLLEY, Royal Engineers, Whose death we are called upon the record as a result of the recent severe fighting on the Western front, is the third member of the Woolley family to fall in this great conflict. A soldier of fine physique, brave and fearless, he had for two years faced the enemy, and engaged in all the horrors and privations of war, and it is placed on record that the closing act of his exemplary life was a noble and gallant attempt to render help to comrades in distress. “The sad news of Corpl. Woolley's death and noble conduct was conveyed in the following letter to his wife forwarded by the Adjutant, and received on Monday week last, and subsequently confirmed by an official notification from the War Office on Monday last: –– “Dear Mrs. Woolley, — You will be surprised to see a letter from a stranger, and I will at once explain the reason. In these times we have to prepared for many things and for all sorts of news and I deeply regret to say that I have sad news to tell you. Things have been very active here lately, and yesterday morning early particularly so. Your husband was in what was considered a very safe dug-out, when some gas shells burst near the stairway entrance and caused a great deal of contusion, and many men were over-powered. Your husband at once went to try and help others who were rendered helpless, and in doing so lost his own life. I can do no more than offer you my sincere sympathy in your loss, which I fear will be a great shock and grief to you. I further have, unfortunately, to tell you that it has been impossible to recover his body and bury him in a cemetery. You see after the gas shells had burst some other shells dropped and wrecked the whole place and the men were buried in the fall of ground. They worked hard to get the men out, but all their efforts proved failures. I am sorry if I have told you all this too bluntly, but I am terribly busy. —Yours very truly, “G. L. GARDNER, Lieut., “Adjutant, “177th Company, R.E. “Corpl. Woolley was 42 years of age. He was a native of Codnor, in which district his mother and other members of the family still reside. His home was at Bagthorpe, near Jacksdale, and leaves a widow and six children, for whom the deepest sympathy will be felt. Prior to the war Corpl. Woolley worked at Pinxton Colliery, and enlisted in October, 1914, in the Sherwood Foresters. In February of the following year he transferred to the Royal Engineers to meet an immediate demand for sappers, and proceeded to France. He was seriously wounded on May 11th, but recovered, and was sent back France in September, following five days' leave at home. In December he was gassed, but recovered in hospital at Rouen, and in April last year he came home leave for ten days. Since returning to the fighting zone Corpl. Wooolley has figured in the most severe fighting of the campaign, chiefly on the Somme and in the Ypres sector, and he was exacted home for a second and well-deserved furlough last week-end. He received his first promotion after the battle of Hill 60, and his second about ten days before being killed on July 22nd. “Mrs. Woolley has also received a letter of condolence from Sergt Martin, of Ilkeston, in which he gives personal testimony to the deceased soldier's sterling qualities as a soldier and his loyalty and devotion to duty. “Two nephews of Corpl. Woolley have fallen in the war, one being the son of Mr. S. J. Woolley, formerly of Eastwood and now of Mansfield, and the other son of Mr. Wm. Woolley, of Langley Mill, and now residing at Doncaster.” Above article is courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
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