ATHERLEY Albert William
Regiment : 2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment
Service number : 25102
Conflict : WW1
Date of death : 17th April 1918 aged 37
Buried : Commemorated on Ploegsteert Memorial, Belgium, Panel 5.
Relatives : Son of the late George and Ellen Atherley, 20 Church St., Stourbridge, Worcestershire
Memorial : Stourbridge War Memorial
Credits : Researched by The Black Country Society.
Albert Atherley was born in Birmingham and lived at 20 Church Street, Stourbridge. He volunteered in 1915 for the Worcesters and joined the 2nd Battalion which was deeply involved in the Battle of the Somme in 1916 and the hard fought Third Battle of Ypres in 1917. In April 1918 the 2nd Battalion faced the second of the German Spring offensives on the river Lys south of Ypres. The Worcesters were quickly moved forward to stop the German breakthrough in front of Neuve Eglise. On the 13th April the Germans attacked, infiltrating along the hedges and lanes towards the British trench line and establishing machine gun posts on their flanks. On the morning of the 14th April it was apparent that the troops in Neuve Eglise were nearly surrounded. A successful breakout was led by Captain Crowe, who was awarded the Victoria Cross, but many fought to the last or were forced to surrender. Private Albert Atherley died on the battlefield, along with 60 others from the Worcesters, including George Burrows and William Ernest Jakeman, also from Stourbridge.
Albert Atherley has no known grave, the photograph available shows his name on Ploegsteert Memorial.