Thomas Portman was the son of Benjamin and Ellen Portman of 162 Spring Hill, Halesowen and attended Hasbury school. He worked for Walter Somers and Co. and volunteered for the Worcester Territorials. He joined the 1/7th Battalion who moved to the Western Front in 1915 and eventually to the Somme front line at Hébuterne, which was quiet at that time. The winter of early 1916 was among the worst of the century and conditions for the Territorials were dire. There were occasional raids and a high level of sickness. Private Thomas Portman died on the 16th March at the age of 19. His army number, 3202, was next to that of Robert Poutney, suggesting that they might have volunteered at the same time and served together. He is commemorated on the Thiepval, Halesowen, Hasbury school and Walter Somers and Co. Memorials.
ST JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH,High St,Halesowen,Dudley,West Midlands,B63 3BB,England, B63 3BB
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