Joseph Bateman was married to Florence May Bateman who lived at 7a Vauxhall Street, Dudley. He enlisted in the Staffords and was sent to the 2nd Battalion who were stationed in early 1917 on the upper stretch of the River Ancre in the Somme sector. In February a major attack before dawn failed with high casualties. The Staffords moved to Arras in April for an attack on the Hindenburg Line at Oppy but this difficult operation resulted in even more losses. The battalion then went into reserve for reorganisation and by November was approaching the forthcoming battle of Cambrai. At some point Private Joseph Bateman went absent, was arrested, escaped from the guard-room and travelled to Boulogne. He was brought before a court martial for a second offence of desertion and, after the failure of appeals, was executed by firing squad on the 3rd December 1917. He is buried in Rocquigny-Equancourt Road Cemetery (VI A 27) and is now commemorated on the Wordsley Memorial.
High Street, Wordsley, West Midlands, DY8 5RU
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