MARSHALL George Henry
Regiment : 11th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment
Service number : 17374
Conflict : WW1
Date of death : 24th April 1917 aged 22
Buried : Doiran Military Cemetery, Greece, Grave VI. J. 8.
Relatives : Son of George and Jane Elizabeth Marshall, of Church Lench, Evesham, Worcestershire
Memorial : Church Lench All Saints Church
Credits : Additional information researched and transcribed by Alan Stephens.
Additional information on the memorial: 11 Wor. Reg.
George Henry Marshall was born in 1895, the son of George and Jane Elizabeth Marshall and he lived at “The Villa” Church Lench. By 1917 he was serving in 11th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment.
In October 1915 a British-French force landed at Thessalonica (Salonika) northern Greece at the request of the Greek Prime Minister to help the Serbians defend themselves against the Bulgarians. In fact the force arrived too late as Serbia had already been defeated but it was decided not only to keep the force there but to steadily reinforce it for possible future use.
The 11th Worcesters were part of 78 Brigade, 26 Division which arrived in Greece at the end of 1915. Throughout 1916 the force created a defensive front north of Thessalonica. In the spring of 1917 it was decided to go over to the offensive. An attack began at 2100hrs on 24th April, in what became known as the battle of Doiran. It was a disaster (although other sectors had more success) with troops attacking down a steep ravine at night with the Bulgarian artillery firing directly into them from the opposing hill with the intention of climbing the opposing slope. The ridge was taken at bayonet point but then the Bulgarians counterattacked and at 0400hrs the order was given to retire. From an initial strength of about 500 the 11th Worcesters lost about 350 killed and wounded.
George Marshall is buried at the Doiran military cemetery in northern Greece about 60 miles north of Thessalonica and only yards from the international border of what is now the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.