Private Charles Martyn Legate - died 19/7/1916

53rd Australian Infantry - service number 3366

Charles was born in December 1893,  the son of Theophilus and Sara J Legate of "Spafield", Holywood, County Down. After Inst, he attended Queen's University Belfast for two months before moving to Australia where he worked as a bushman.

He enlisted with the Australian Infantry on 20th July 1915 in Dubbo, New South Wales, when aged 21, originally joining the 4th Battalion before transferring to the 53rd Battalion. He was allocated to the Machine Gun Section, and sailed with them to France on board the "Royal George" in June 1916 via Alexandria and Marseilles.

Charles was killed in the ill-fated Australian 5th Division attack at Fromelles, aged 22.

Charles is buried in VC Corner Australian Military Cemetery, Fromelles (panel 8), Nord, France

Second Engineer George Legate - died 29/10/1918

Mercantile Marine HMT Seattle

eorge died on board the HMT Seattle on 29th October 1918

George is buried in Archangel Allied Cemetery (ref A2), Russia

Second Lieutenant Charles Legg - died 15/9/1918

203rd Field Company Royal Engineer

Charles, from Bayview, Carrickfergus, County Antrim, attended Queen's University Belfast after Inst, from where he graduated with a BSc in 1914. He was also a member of the Officer Training Corps at the university. During university vacations he had been working for Holywood District Council as an assistant engineer.

He was 22 years old when he enlisted in June 1915 and was commissioned to the Royal Engineers in January 1917.

Charles suffered a serious injury while riding. In a statement, Lt Tate of the Royal Engineers said: 

"2nd Lt Legg and I were riding from the Company Camp to the CRE's office at Bavinchove on duty and when crossing a field, Lt Legg's horse bolted with him and he was thrown against a tree. Captain Lavington RAMC and his orderly were riding with me at the time and attended to Lt Legg after the accident until the arrival of the ambulance which was immediately sent for. The doctors did all they could but he died from a fracture of the ribs on the right side with internal injuries accompanied by severe shock".

Charles died on 15th September 1918 and is buried in Arneke British Cemetery (ref VII A 17), Nord, France.

Second Lieutenant William Norman Legg - died 24/3/1916

7th King's Shropshire Light Infantry

William was the son of Sarah Ann Legg of 41 Fitzwilliam St Belfast. He was living at 4 Dunluce Avenue, Belfast prior to enlisting.

He suffered a neck fracture in the Ypres Salient on 16th January 1916 and was sent to the Duchess of Westminster Hospital in Le Touquet to recover.

During the time he was in hospital his wife was given permission to visit him.

William died of heart failure on 24th March, aged 26, and was originally buried in Camiers Road Cemetery, Etaples. He was later reinterred is buried in Etaples Military Cemetery (ref I B 24), Pas de Calais, France.

Lieutenant Francis Patrick Mapletoft Leonard - died 29/4/1916

8th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers

Francis was born on 30th June 1889, he son of Francis Mapletoft Leonard (the chief customs clerk for Belfast) and Jessie Leonard (nee Nell) of 7 Castleton Terrace, Belfast. As well as Inst, he attended Campbell College and Ellesmere College, Shropshire.

He was apprenticed as a civil engineer at the Combe Barbour foundry in Belfast, and he entered London University, in June 1910. He enlisted in the University and Public Schools Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers in September 1914, was gazetted second lieutenant in the same month, and was promoted to Lieutenant on 30th April 1915. He was living at 2 Charnwood Terrace, Chichester Park Belfast at this time.

Francis served in France from February 1916 and was died of gas poisoning near Hulluch in the early hours of 29th April 1916, when his battalion, which was holding a part of the front line, was subjected to a severe gas attack. The enemy released gas from two pipes laid out half way across no-man's land and gas came over in two clouds, the war diary reporting, "the first of a greenish colour, the second of a yellowish creamy colour. The Germans made no attempt to attack on our front".

His Company Commander wrote "His manner of death was cheerful, and I can truly say heroic" and his Colonel stated "I was very fond of him. We all were...he was a truly good officer in every sense of the word. I could see the steadying, restraining, illuminating evidences of his faith acting within him, and indeed, shining in his face". He was 26 when he died.

Francis was originally buried south of Lone Tree, Loos but his body was lost and he is now commemorated on the Loos Memorial (panel 60), Pas de Calais, France.

Lieutenant Bertram Chiene Letts - died 21/10/1915

13th Casualty Clearing Station, Royal Army Medical Corps


Bertram was the son of Dr. E. A. Letts (Professor of Chemistry, Queen's College, Belfast) and husband of Kathleen Mabel Whitlet Letts (daughter of the late Lord Provost Whittet of Perth), of 9, Comely Bank, Perth, and working as a doctor when he enlisted with the RAMC. Bertam and Kathleen had married on 3rd August 1915.

Bertram died at the age of 27, and is buried in Alexandria (Chatby) Military and War Memorial Cemetery (ref Q534), Egypt.