Harry Stokes was the son of Mrs Rudge of 10 Victoria Street, Halesowen. He attended Halesowen C of E School and was also a member of the Methodists in Halesowen. He volunteered for the Worcester Territorials and went to the 1/7th Battalion. They crossed to France in March 1915 and were posted to the Somme front line at Hébuterne. Their task was to prepare for the Battle of the Somme and they went into action for the second phase. On the 13th August they took over front line trenches at Ovillers including the important Skyline Trench. Their main attack occurred on the 21st August. They returned in September for action on the Transloy Ridges and again in late November when the line had been pushed up to the Butte de Warlencourt, a prominent mound. In spite of the difficulties created by both frost and mud, raids were carried out on the enemy trenches. It was probably as a result of one of these that Private Harry Stokes was killed on the 6th December. He was 26 years of age and is commemorated on the Thiepval, Halesowen, Halesowen United Methodist church and Halesowen C of E School Memorials.
ST JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH,High St,Halesowen,Dudley,West Midlands,B63 3BB,England, B63 3BB
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