Regiment : 6th Battalion Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry
Service number : 12714
Conflict : WW1
Date of death : Died of wounds on 21st October 1915
Buried : Sailly-Sur-La-Lys Canadian Cemetery, France, Grave II. B. 30.
Birthplace : Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, resident Selly Oak, Warwickshire, enlisted Birmingham
Memorial : Bromsgrove Independent Order of Oddfellows
Also appears on : Bromsgrove St John the Baptist Church WW1 memorial
Credits : Researched by Andy Frisby.
Appears on the memorial under St George Lodge.
Albert Allen was born at Bromsgrove in 1889. He was the son of Thomas Henry and Harriet Rosetta Allen nee Corbett. Thomas was an enamel worker. They had 4 children:-
Thomas William Allen born 1887.
Albert Linthorn Allen born 1889.
Ruby Annie Allen born 1891.
Emily Elizabeth Allen born 1892.
Thomas had 4 children from his second marriage to Elizabeth Alice Hancock. They were:-
Alfred Allen born 1896.
Violet Allen born 1897.
Herbert Allen born 1901.
Ida Allen born 1903.
The family resided at Selly Oak, Birmingham.
Albert enlisted at Birmingham in September 1914 and went to France on 22nd July 1915. Prior to the war he worked for Harries Whitfield and Co of Birmingham.
NB MILITARY RECORDS GIVE HIS CHRISTIAN NAME AS LESLIE NOT ALBERT.
Taken from the Bromsgrove Droitwich and Redditch Messenger dated 30th October and 6th November 1915:
The manner of Lance Corporal Allen’s death is described in a letter received by Mr T Allen from one of deceased’s company officers: “It is with much regret that I have to inform you that your brother was killed on duty last night. He was carrying up rations at the time and was about to enter the communication trench when a stray bullet came from nowhere in particular, and passed through another corporal’s hand as he was carrying something, and going on hit your brother in the left breast just above the heart. They got him away immediately, and he was sent to the best hospital in three-quarters of an hour, and was hoped at first it would not prove fatal. He died at 10.45 p.m. having been hit at 7.00 p.m. He was a splendid fellow, much liked by his comrades and a great favourite with both officers and men, perfectly straight and a good worker. He had been made lance-corporal and his name was down for full corporal. It was shocking bad luck as he could ill be spared. A good sportsman and runner, he bore everything without a murmur, and was an example to all.”
Mr T. Allen has received the following letter from the Rev. Roger Bulstrode, a chaplain at the front referring to the death of his brother: “As chaplain of your brother’s regiment, and as one who knew him well, I feel I must send you this message of deepest sympathy with you and all who loved him in the great sorrow that has come to you through hid death at the front. I heard on Friday 22nd, that he had been severely wounded, and I went to our usual field ambulance in the hope of seeing him, but as he had been taken to another ambulance (St Maur) I was unfortunately not able to see him. I know how little mere human sympathy can do for such grief, but I pray that God may give you his own comfort and strength in your bereavement. Lance-Corporal Allen was one of my confirmation candidates a year ago, and was a member of our brigade branch of the C.E.M.S. He was one of those whose quiet, consistent life had a wider influence for good than he himself would have recognised, and the loss to the battalion and to myself personally is very great. It would have been a privilege to conduct his funeral service, but this was doubtless taken by the chaplain of the Field Ambulance in which he died. You may however, be sure that the grave will be marked by a simple cross and inscription, and properly tended. The position will also be recorded by the Graves Recognition Commission, for future identification. Those into whose hearts and homes the war has brought the same bitter sorrow are often in our thoughts and prayers here. Your brother has given his life for his country, and we know that the sacrifice will not be in vain.”
Lance-Corporal Allen went through the battle of Loos without receiving a scratch. On one occasion, while having his breakfast, he and his equipment were buried as the result of a shell explosion, but on being dug out, it was found he was uninjured. At another time, when volunteers were asked for to mend the wire entanglements in front, he and three others offered themselves. Two were killed, but he and another returned unhurt.