Douglas Alfred Hall Leece (1918-1942)

An ongoing project to commemorate and research the lives of those who appear on war memorials and rolls of honour in the local area, who served in the military, or whose deaths were linked to conflict.


Douglas Alfred Hall Leece was born in 1918 in Longwood, the son of worsted manufacturer Harold Leece and his wife Hannah (née Hoyle).

During the First World War, Harold Leece served in the 5th Battalion, Duke of Wellington's Regiment.

At the time of the 1921 Census, Douglas was living with his maternal grandparents at 132 Longwood Gate, Longwood. The Leece family later resided at Grenoside, 58 Birkby Lodge Road, Birkby.

He was educated at Almondbury Grammar School.


Huddersfield Examiner (08/Jun/1940):


Birkby Man Back in England Again

Among those who have taken part in the historic evacuation of Flanders is Private Douglas A. Leece, son of Mr. and Mrs. Harold Leece, of Grenoside, Birkby Lodge Road. Private Leece, who is twenty-one and is in the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, has just arrived back at a South Coast port. He is the fourth generation of his family to have worn the British Army uniform.

Private Leece is well known in Huddersfield and district as an amateur footballer, and up to his joining the Army held a scoring record for one of the local leagues. He began playing with the Huddersfield Y.M.C.A., and latterly played for the Meltham club.

Huddersfield Examiner (29/Aug/1942):


Sad News of Two Cousins

Sad news has been received of two Huddersfield men who are cousins.

One of them, Lance-Corporal Douglas Alfred Hall Leece, R.A.O.C., elder son of Mr. and Mrs. Harold Leece, Grenoside, Birkby Lodge Road, who was a prisoner of war in Italian hands, is reported to have died.

Lance-Corporal Leece, who was twenty-three years of age, took part in the evacuation of Flanders in 1940. He went abroad again, and was taken prisoner.

An old Almondbury Grammar School boy, he was well known in sporting circles. He was an amateur footballer, and before joining the Army held the scoring record for one of the local leagues. He first played with the Huddersfield Y.M.C.A., and later for Meltham. He was a member of the fourth generation of his family to wear the King’s uniform.

In civil life Lance-Corporal Leece was a clerk at the King Street branch of the National Provincial Bank, and later at the Knaresborough branch of that bank.

Lance-Corporal Leece’s cousin Flight-Lieut. Peter Shaw, R.A.F., who is twenty-one years of age, is reported “missing, believed to have lost his life.”

The elder son of Mr. and Mrs. John Shaw, Stonegarth, Crosland Hill, he was, before he joined the R.A.F. voluntarily some three years ago, employed by the Dobroyd Mills Co., Ltd., Jackson Bridge.

Known as a crack rifle shot, he had won many prizes. He was educated at the Huddersfield College and Almondbury Grammar School. He was a member of the Huddersfield and Crosland Heath Golf Clubs, was a well-known player on both courses, and some years ago played with John Fallon in a county competition.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission



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