Donald Claud Glenfield Hick

Somerset Light Infantry
Date of death 
1 July 1916
Age of death 
Cemetery / Memorial 

Born in 1899 at Redruth Cornwall, son of Barnett (Laundry Proprietor) and Kate Hick. 1901: With his parents at Pine Cottage, Falmouth, Cornwall. 1911: A Pupil at the United Methodist College, Shibbear, north Devon.

His brother William and wife Joan were living at 41 Wynndale Road, South Woodford in 1915, so it is likely Donald was staying with them when he enlisted at Stratford. After training he was sent to France on 8th September 1915. 

On 1st July 1916 when the Battle of the Somme began, 63 Brigade which included 8 Somersets was located in the area of the Albert-Bapaume Road - “The La Boisselle Sector”. Their positions had been bombarded overnight by German artillery, while the British pre attack bombardment reached its peak after 06.00. At 07.30 the British troops advanced with the intention of encircling and cutting off the village of Mametz, which (along with Fricourt) should be overrun and captured by other units in a subsequent attack from about 14.30. In spite of the British bombardment which had lasted for several days, as soon as the Somersets left the trenches they began falling victim to intense and accurate German machine gun fire. Though some managed to reach the German front line trench systems, it was impossible to advance any further. This phase of the attack was not successful.

Two reserve Battalions (8 Lincolnshire and 10 York & Lancaster) sent in as reinforcements were also mauled by machine gun fire, though they managed to advance the line a little further.

During this operation Donald Hick was Killed in Action.

Research by Adrian Lee, Local Historian