Field, Richard (Dick)

Private, Richard Field, 11th EYR

PRIVATE RICHARD ‘DICK’ FIELD 11/934. Born in January 1895, Richard was the fourth of seven children to Tom and Mary Field of 15, Cornwall Street, Hull (War Pension address). A Labourer by trade, he queued outside City Hall in the heady days of early September 1914 in the promise of the late summer sun, to get a slice of the Big European Adventure before it was too late. He joined the 11th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment, ‘The Tradesmen’, 2nd Hull Pals on 10th September 1914. Following training at Hull, Hornsea, Beverley and Ripon the Pals shipped for Alexandria, Egypt just before Christmas 1915. Their task was to defend the Suez Canal, vital to the functioning of the Empire, from potential attack from the Turks. In truth they were more in danger from Malaria and the bitter cold desert nights. Their real war began in the first week of March 1916 when they landed at Marseilles and travelled north to the trenches of the Western Front. Here they got their baptism of fire on the Somme and many of the originals were lost over the summer and autumn as the attack waged on meaninglessly. Richard was killed in action on 3rd May 1917 during the ill-fated attack on Oppy Wood; his body was never recovered and his name is commemorated on the Arras Memorial to the missing on that sector; he was 22 years old. His name is recorded on Hull’s Wilmington Roll of Honour.

Oppy Wood, Arras, France 1917

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Arras Memorial, Pas de Calais, France