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Soldier – Allen, Thomas Freeth – Councillor’s Loss – Only Son Dies of Wounds

January 1917

Mexborough and Swinton Times, January 20, 1917

Mexborough Councillors Loss
Only Son Dies of Wounds

Private Thomas Freeth Allen
(West Yorkshire Regiment)

we have regretfully to announce that the Rifleman Thomas Freeth Allen (West Yorkshire Regiment) only son of Councillor and Mrs Thomas Allen, of Park Villa, Park Road, Mexborough, died on January 9 of wounds received in action in France.

Councillor Allen received on Tuesday two letters conveying the sad intelligence. One was written by the Rev George M Rice, a hospital chaplain in France, who stated:

“Your son was brought into a neighbouring hospital on Monday night, suffering from severe wounds in the head. Notwithstanding all that was done for him – and the best was done – he passed away yesterday.

I did not get to know he was there until he had passed away, but the Church of England chaplain told me was very ill. I have buried the dear lad this morning, in a quiet cemetery close by the hospital when he died, where many another brave man lies in his last sleep.

My deepest sympathy is with you in your great loss, but he died nobly and in a noble cause. Neither God nor England will forget the supreme sacrifice he and many another have made. His personal effects will be sent to the base, and thence to you. Assuring you of my heartfelt sympathy, and praying that God may have you in His gracious keeping just now.

Yours very sincerely George M Rice, chaplain

Miss M.A.C. Blair sister in charge of the hospital in which Rifleman Allen died, also wrote:

“I am afraid I have very sad news for you today. Your son was admitted to us on 8 January with shell wounds in the chest and shoulder. He was very ill, and collapsed on admission, his wounds being very serious. In spite of all we could do for him he gradually sank, and died at 9 PM on January 9. He was so good those two days; always trying to say you was a little better.”

Rifleman T.F.Allen, whose untimely, but gallant and will be sincerely mourned by the large circle of his acquaintance, was 25 years of age. He was educated at Rotherham Grammar School, and afterwards studied for the law, being articled by Mr F.E. Hall, solicitor, Mexborough. He passed his final qualifying examination in July 1915, and having become qualified for admission as a solicitor, probably joined the army, enlisting in the York and Lancaster Regiment.

He took to the army life very well, and in many cheerful letter home spoke of the good he was extracting from it in point of health and experience. He went to the front some six or seven months ago, and was subsequently transferred to the West Yorkshire Regiment, in which unit he was serving when he received his fatal wounds. He had survived at least three heavy engagements.

He was a member of the Mexborough Tennis Club, and altogether a most popular and promising young man, whose unselfishness and patriotism, and it was natural good parts, will long be remembered with a steam in Mexborough.

The greatest sympathy is felt for his sorrowing parents of whom he was the only child.


From C.W.G.C.:

Rank: Private
Service No: 7000
Date of Death: 09/01/1917
Age: 26
Regiment/Service: West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales’s Own) 6th Bn.

Grave Reference: III. J. 7.
Additional Information:
Son of Lily Allen, of Park Villa, Mexborough, Rotherham, Yorks, and the late Thomas Allen. Law Student.