BORN HULL 1878. SON OF JOHN HOLMES (1847-1940) AND LUCY ATKINS (1848-1920). HE MARRIED HANNAH JENKINSON (1876-1934), AT HULL, IN 1898. HIS WIFE HANNAH LIVED AT 2 BATES TERRACE, WEST PARADE, HULL (1911 CENSUS). A DOCK LABOURER. THEY HAD FIVE CHILDREN INCLUDING TWINS.
HE ENLISTED IN HULL. SERVED WITH THE 2ND EAST YORKSHIRE BATTALION. KILLED IN ACTION, ON 25/04/1915, AGED 36. HIS ARMY EFFECTS WERE LEFT TO HIS WIDOW HANNAH AND 5 CHILDREN.
“Shortly after 5pm the battalion was ordered to attack towards St Julien and advanced in ‘artillery formation’, with two platoons of D Company in front, led by Lt-Col Shaw. On reaching Bridge House the battalion swung north towards St Julien; it now came under heavy rifle and machine gun fire and was swept by Shrapnel shells and heavy howitzer shells. Eye-witnesses described the tired and hungry battalion behaving ‘as if they were doing an attack practice in peace’. At 950 yards (870 m) and again at 500 yards (460 m) the men opened rifle fire on the enemy, with little apparent effect. Coming upon a road the battalion could advance no further against the hostile fire, and took cover. Lieutenant-Colonel Shaw had been killed by a rifle bullet during the advance, and the CO of the Green Howards took over both battalions. The East Yorkshires were ordered to stay where they were until nightfall; they saw no sign of the Canadians who were supposed to be in St Julien, but their rifle fire combined with the Canadian artillery broke up a German attack from the village, and neither side held it at the end of the day. The East Yorkshires was permitted to withdraw after dark; in its first action the battalion had lost three officers and 12 other ranks killed, 66 wounded and 17 missing, of whom 10 were known to be wounded.”