Baxenden Lads: Kenyon E

23rd June 1916

PTE. 18037 ERNEST KENYON of the 11th East Lancashire Regiment (the Accrington Pals) was killed in action on June 23rd 1916, just one week before the start of the Battle of the Somme on July 1st.

Ernest, at thirty seven years old, was older than most of his comrades. He was married with four children, and, in 1914, lived in Union Street, Accrington. He formerly lived in Baxenden. Before his enlistment in January 1915 he worked at Broad Oak Printworks. As a foreman calico printer he was one of those presented to King George the Fifth and Queen Mary when they visited the works on their Royal visit to Accrington on July 9th 1913.

The Accrington Pals took over the line of trenches from which they were to attack on July 1st 1916 as early as April 28th. During those two months every man spent periods in the trenches, and whilst out of the trenches brought up from the rear areas such supplies, ammunition, etc. as would be needed for the attack. This work was often done under German shell-fire. Whilst on this duty Ernest was killed.

Ernest is buried in Bertrancourt Military Cemetery. Bertrancourt is a village in the old ‘rear area’ near the Albert to Doullens road. He lies with twelve other ‘Accrington Pals’ who were killed in June 1916. There are 416 war graves in the cemetery.