South Staffordshire. 15 July 1916

Ralph Beresford was the son of Ralph and Clara Beresford of 56 Vine Street, Harts Hill, and was born on the 31st July 1895. He was admitted to Old Swinford Hospital, Stourbridge, in 1905 and was apprenticed in 1919 to Hill and Smith of Brierley Hill as an iron moulder. He volunteered for the South Staffords at the outbreak of war and served in the 1st Battalion. He joined them on the Western Front in February 1915 and fought in the Artois battles on the Spring and Autumn. In February 1916 they moved to the Somme sector and started preparations for the coming battle. They were in the front line for that attack on the first day and within 30 minutes had captured Mametz at little cost. On the 14th July the Staffords were called upon to attack again and the target was High Wood. They entered the wood after an approach of one mile but it was well defended and they were obliged during the night to withdraw. Casualties were taken and among them was Lance Corporal Ralph Beresford who was killed in action. He was 20 years of age and is commemorated on the Thiepval, Dudley and Woodside Memorials.

Commemorated at:

Dudley Clock Tower

Dudley Clock Tower

Town Hall, Priory Street, Dudley

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