GILES, Frederick W

Worcestershire. 26 September 1917

Frederick Giles was born at Wolverhampton and moved to Stourbridge, where his mother lived at 'West View', South Avenue, Stourbridge. He was educated at Stourbridge Grammar School and attended the Baptist chapel in Hanbury Hill. He enlisted in the Worcesters and joined the 2nd Battalion, probably late in 1916. They were sent to Ypres in September 1917 and their orders were to push along the Menin Road and capture Gheluvelt, the site of the famed attack in October 1914. The whole position, however, was thoroughly covered by the German artillery. The Menin Road was so regularly shelled that it was unusable, and just to relieve the 23rd Division at Sanctuary Wood was difficult. The British plan was to attack on 26 September, but no sooner had the battalion arrived than the Germans attacked in force. At 5.15 a.m. their artillery opened up an intense bombardment and then their infantry appeared. The Germans suffered heavy casualties as they struggled across the boggy and pitted ground, but could not get close enough to the Worcestershire line. By 2 p.m. the enemy began to prepare for another assault which arrived at four o'clock. British artillery, however, produced an accurate bombardment of their positions and the attack petered out. By this time the Worcesters had been reduced to a desperate, weary remnant with losses amounting to 36 killed, 29 missing and 145 wounded. The missing included Lance Corporal Frederick Giles who was severely wounded. He died the same day and is commemorated on Tyne Cot, Stourbridge, Baptist chapel and King Edward VI College Memorials.

Commemorated at:

Stourbridge Baptist Chapel

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Chapel Street Stourbridge, West Midlands, DY8 1BZ

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