Dedicated to the memory of all the men and women of the Bridgnorth area who died during the two World Wars.
Edward Head was baptised at St Leonard’s on 25th May, 1895. His parents were John and Hannah. John worked as a carpet weaver. The family lived in Bylet Cottages (1901) and Friars Street (1911). Edward followed his father into the carpet trade and worked at the factory of H & M Southwell Ltd.
Edward served in the 1/4th King’s Shropshire Light Infantry. He probably served with the battalion in the Far East before going to France in July 1917. He died on 13th January, 1918. He is buried in Ruyaulcourt Military Cemetery.
Private Head, 200291, was awarded the Victory and British Medals and the Territorial Forces War Medal. His death was reported in the Bridgnorth Journal on 23rd February, 1918.
DEATH OF BRIDGNORTH SOLDIER [Bridgnorth Journal, Saturday 23rd February, 1918] Mr J. Head, 66 Friar’s Street, Bridgnorth, has been officially notified of the death of his son 200291 Pte E. Head, of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, which occurred at 149 Field Ambulance, France, on the 12th January. The cause of his death is not stated. An officer in a letter to Mr. Head says:- “Your brave son gallantly stuck to his post in the trenches under very trying conditions. He was brought down utterly exhausted, and passed away in one of our dressing stations on the 12th January. His body is buried in a little cemetery which is well cared for, and careful note has been taken of the grave. I have forwarded your address to the War Office asking for a photo to be sent you of the grave. Please accept my deep sympathy in your great loss.”
The Battalion war diary for this period records the dreadful conditions in the trenches due to the weather. It is quite easy to see how a soldier may have died from exhaustion.
Melted snow water in many places almost knee deep in the trenches. No appliances available for clearing trenches .... under foot conditions appalling.
This memorial has mostly been compiled from official sources. It would be good to be able to expand it with more personal material - memories, stories, photos, etc. If you have any suitable material or any corrections please contact Greg. For news of updates follow @BridgnorthHeros on Twitter.