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Person Details
Beeston Nottingham
Percy Douglas Bettle was born in 1894 the youngest child of John James and Eliza (née Warrick) Bettle of 57 Mona Street, Beeston. In about 1879, John James (born about 1856), had moved to Beeston with his wife Eliza (born about 1858) and family from the village of Cronfield in Bedfordshire where they had been born. The couple had at least eight children. The family were committed Primitive Methodists and the name of Percy Bettle is on the memorial plaque on the Wollaton Road Church wall. His brother John William Bettle was killed inaction 3/6/1917. Percy Douglas married Agnes Annie Ward (born 11th January 1894) in 1916 their marriage was recorded in the Basford Registration district they lived at 47 Fletcher Road, Beeston and had a daughter Agnes born 2nd August 1916. Following his death his widow Agnes was awarded a pension of 20 shillings and 5 pence a week which commenced on the 25th November 1918 (above information from his pension card)
Percy Bettle was educated at the Nether Street School, while there he joined the Beeston Boys Brigade and later the Old Boys.
21 Mar 1918
24
740788 - CWGC Website
266498
Lance Corporal
2/7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
Lance Corporal Percy Bettle was killed on the first day of the German Spring Offensive as described in the battalion diary: "At 5am the enemy opened up with a very heavy bombardment. On the front line it was mostly trench mortars and gas shells. The mist, the dust and the gas made it impossible to see more than a few yards ahead. All telephone lines were cut in the first few minutes and communication had to be carried on by runner. One Lewis Gun Team got clear of the trenches into the shell holes in front of our wire, and escaped the worst of the bombardment. They committed many casualties when the enemy came over the top, until a well directed trench mortar knocked them all out. The front line was practically levelled to the ground, but a good deal of hand to hand fighting took place, and the numbers of dead on both sides testified to the stubbornness of the defence. The Germans attacked again at 8.30am and by 10.00am they had broken through on both right and left of the line. The mist cleared about 10.15am, and a battalion of Germans could be seen marching along a ridge some 800 yards on the right."
Although there is no indication on the CWGC records research by the late Ray Smedley discovered that Percy Bettle had married Agnes Annie Ward at the beginning of 1916 and that his wife went to live with one of the family and worked at the Concordia factory in Long Eaton until she was seventy three years of age.
Remembered on

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