September 25. Loos. Newtownards Gunners at Tobruk. Roll of Honour

On this day in 1915 “The Witness” a Presbyterian Church news magazine described the UVF camps at Clandeboye, Newcastle, and Ballykinlar. In 1915 the London Irish Rifles go over the top as the Battle of Loos begins. An attack at Bellewaerde Lake near Ypres on 25/09/1915 cost the Royal Irish Rifles 2nd Btn over 350 casualties. There are 64 names on today’s Roll. Two brothers Second Lieutenants Kenneth and Melbourne Ross from Cultra died. They are both named on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial. On the same day, Viscount Andrew Steward of Stewartstown fell with the Royal Scots Fusiliers at Loos, and Old Portoran Major Nicholas Archdale fell with the Cameron Highlanders. In 1941 three Gunners from Newtownards, Joseph Dalzell, Samuel Graham, and William McNeilly died in North Africa. They are remembered at Tobruk War Cemetery, Libya, and Newtownards War Memorial. Naval Reservist William Allen from Bellarena was lost in a trawler being used as a minesweeper which was sunk by E-boat torpedo off Harwich in 1943. On the same day, 21-year-old James Boyd from Lisburn was lost in HMS. Itchen after six years service. He had been In Rodney at Narvik, at the sinking of the Bismarck, and was In Hood for the North African invasion. Photo – Parachute Regiment colours at Osterbeek 75th anniversary remembrance service in 2004.

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