Private Horace Pratt, 2735

  • Batt - 1st/4th
  • Unit - Leicestershire Regiment
  • Section - "D" Coy.
  • Date of Birth -
  • Died - 23/04/1915
  • Age - 20

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Source: Michael Doyle Their Name Liveth For Evermore: The Great War Roll of Honour for Leicestershire and Rutland.
He was the son of John Pratt, a commercial traveller, born 7th June 1866 in Leicester and was baptised on the 16th May 1875 in St. Leonard’s Church, Leicester and his wife Rebecca Elizabeth Pratt (nee Norton, married on the 21st September 1893 in St. Matthew’s Church, Leicester), born in February 1869 in Leicester and was baptised on the 29th January 1873 in St. Matthew’s Church, Leicester. Horace was born in the 3rd quarter of 1894 in Leicester and was baptised on the 2nd September 1894 in St. Matthew’s Church, Leicester, he had one sibling, a sister, Ethel, born 23rd June 1897 in Leicester and baptised on the 25th July 1897 in St. Matthew’s Church, Leicester, in March 1901 the family home was at 41, Paton Street, Leicester. In April 1911 Horace was employed as a boot manufacturer’s clerk and was residing in the family home at 39, Park Vale Road, Leicester, together with his father, a commercial traveller, his mother and sister, Ethel, a schoolgirl. Horace’s mother died in August 1939 aged 70 and his father died on the 4th May 1949, aged 82. The family home was at 65, Holmfield Road, Leicester.
Horace enlisted/attested into the Territorial Force on the 18th September 1914 in Leicester, and was allotted the service number 4/2735. He gave his present address as 39, Park Vale Road, Leicester.
His medical examination took place in Leicester on the 18th September 1914 and recorded his apparent age as 20 years 30 days, that he was 6-feet ½ inches in height, had a chest measurement of between 32 and 34 inches and his physical development was described as good.
He gave his next of kin as his father, John Pratt, 39, Park Vale Road, Leicester
During his period of military service, the following events of note occurred: -
Posted. To 4th (Reserve) Bn. Leicestershire Regt. Pte. 18/9/14.
Embodied service commenced. 18/9/14.
Embarked. With 1/4th Bn. Leicestershire Regt. 1/3/15.
Landed. Le Havre. 2/3/15.
Killed in action. In the Field. 23/4/15.
Summary of Service.
Home Service. 18/9/14 – 1/3/15. 165 days.
France. 2/3/15 – 23/4/15. 53 days.
Total Service. 218 days.
He was awarded the 1914-15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
SERVICE RECORD NOTE: In September 1940, as the result of a fire caused by an incendiary bomb at the War Office Record Store in Arnside Street, London, approximately two thirds of 6.5 million soldiers’ documents for the First World War were destroyed. Those records which survived were mostly charred or water damaged and unfit for consultation and became known as the “burnt documents.” As a consequence, the content and condition of the surviving records can range from good to extremely poor. The hand written information is, in some instances barely legible, and the number of pages that should comprise a full record, in some cases are either badly damaged or missing entirely, however where possible the available information has been transcribed so that it may at least offer the reader a little descriptive insight into some, if not all of the events and background information surrounding the period of service.
The War Diary records: 23 Apr-15 - Normal day. No enemy shelling, Battalion Headquarters retired to dug out for ½ hour. Casualties, killed No. 2735 Pte H. PRATT “D” Company, wounded No. 2927 Pte A. E. WYKES “D” Company.
On Friday April 30th 1915, The Melton Mowbray Times & Vale of Belvoir Gazette published the following article under the heading. “DISTRICT WAR ITEMS” – LEICESTER TERRITORIAL KILLED. – Mr John Pratt, of 39, Park Vale Road, has received notification that his only son, Pte. H. Pratt, of the 4th Leicester’s, was killed on the 22nd inst. The intimation was conveyed in a letter from Second Lieutenant Malcolm B. Douglas, who wrote: “He was with me in one of the trenches, and while taking his turn on sentry duty was shot through the head at 7.40am. First aid was rendered immediately, but he died at 10.30am without recovering consciousness and with no suffering whatever. Deep sympathy is felt by myself and also by my platoon, as your son although he has been with me for such a short time, was an excellent soldier, and always ready to do his duty.” Major Potter also wrote a few lines expressing sympathy and stating that the deceased soldier was buried by the Church of England chaplain near the headquarters of the regiment. Pte. Pratt, who was only 20 years of age, joined the Leicester’s on the outbreak of the war in August last, and actually underwent an operation at the Base Hospital to make himself fit to go to the front. Widespread sympathy will be felt with Mr. John Pratt, who is well known and highly respected in local commercial circles, being treasurer and ex-president of the Leicester Commercial Travellers’ Association and having done valued work in connection with its Benevolent Institution.
On Thursday 15th July 1915, The Leicester Daily Post published the following article under the heading. “LEICESTERSHIRE AND THE WAR.” – Old Newtonians’ Roll of Honour. Nearly 300 old boys of Alderman Newton’s School are known to be serving with the colours. A complete list has been prepared and printed for private circulation, “With the best wishes and heartiest greetings to the Old Newtonians who are serving their King and Country in defence of honour.” The following Old Newtonians have fallen: -
HUNT, A. D., 12th Lancers, Mons, Aug. 28, 1914.
RICHARDSON, J. T., H.M.S. Good Hope.
FIELDING, Lieut., 1st Sherwood Foresters.
ASHWELL, F., Sergt. K.R.R., Tryon, Sept., 1914.
ADAMS, C. H., Leicester Yeomanry, 13th May, 1915.
HOPKINS, J. H., Leicester Yeomanry, 13th May, 1915.
MATTHEWS, F. H., Leicester Yeomanry, 13th May, 1915.
HOLMES, H., Lnc-Cpl., Leicester Yeomanry, 13th May, 1915.
FLETCHER, Wm., Sergt., 2nd Leicester’s, 15th May, 1915.
FREER, J. W., Lieut., Dardanelles.

Leicestershire Project Findings
  • Conflict - World War I
  • Cause of death - KILLED IN ACTION
  • Burial Place - Packhorse Farm Shrine Cemetery, D.4., Belgium
  • Enlisted - Leicester
Research from Michael Doyle's Their Name Liveth For Evermore
  • Unit - Leicestershire Regiment
  • Cause of death - KILLED IN ACTION
  • Burial Commemoration - Packhorse Farm Shrine Cem., Wulverghem, Belgium
  • Born - Leicester
  • Enlisted - 18/09/1914 in Leicester
  • Place of Residence - Wrangthorn, Holmfield Road, Leicester, Leicestershire, England

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