Joseph Percy Smith came from Halesowen and was a member of the Short Cross Methodist Church. He volunteered for the Warwicks and joined the 10th (Service) Battalion, which saw action on the Somme and in the Third Battle of Ypres. In early 1918 the Warwicks were in the front line for the first of the German Spring offensives. On the 21st March they were at Velu in Picardy to the east of the Somme and experienced the great Bruckmuller barrage at 4.20 a.m. They and their neighbouring battalions fought a defensive battle for two days but were unable to resist on the 23rd. The German forces were too great and on this day Private Joseph Smith was killed in action. He is commemorated on the Arras, Halesowen and Short Cross Methodist church Memorials.
Short Cross Methodist Church, Halesowen
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