Harry Lancaster Woodhouse (1878-1917)

This page is part of a project by David Verguson to research the lives of those who appear on war memorials and rolls of honour in the Lindley area.


Son of Crosland and Elizabeth Woodhouse, of 3 Acre Street, Lindley, Huddersfield.

The Woodhouse family lived on Thorncliffe Street from at least 1881, when it was still known as Thornhill Street, until 1911. The house numbers varied from 43 to 49, but it seems that it might have been the same house re-numbered, although moving just a few doors along the street is also a possibility.

Sometime during Harry's military service they moved to number 3 Acre Street.

Crosland was born in Lindley in 1846 and although his wife, Elizabeth, born in 1851, was from Oxspring, about three miles south of Penistone, they had lived in Lindley at least since the birth of Harry in 1878. It is possible that Elizabeth, like many other women who had been born outside the Huddersfield area, that she came to the town to work as a servant.

By 1891 they had three more sons: George, born in 1883, Walter born 1888 and Stanley who was only a few months old at the time of the census.

Crosland Woodhouse worked throughout this time as a "cloth warehouseman". Harry followed in his father's footsteps and also became a warehouseman working first at Martin's at Wellington Mill on Plover Road and then at C. & J. Hirst in Longwood. In his spare time, Harry served in the local Territorial Force, enlisting on 29 March 15 1907, when the Force nationally, was re-organised.

George, in 1911, was a bootmaker and described himself as an employer. As his brother Walter was a boot repairer it seems likely that he worked for his older brother. Stanley worked as a shop assistant in a bootmaker's so perhaps George also employed him and operated a shop through which to sell his boots and shoes and repair others.

They had had another child, William but he had died in February 1878, aged three.

Number 49 Thorncliffe Street, a back-to-back, had only 4 rooms and in 1911 in addition to Crosland and Elizabeth there were four adult sons living at home. The house may have been crowded but all the family were in work, one managing to employ two of the others.

In the summer of 1912 Walter then 24 years old, married Nellie Jenkins and left home and in 1916 they had a son, Edward, but sadly he died aged 8 months. He is buried along with young William, in the family plot at the Methodist Church on East Street.

When the war began, Harry immediately enlisted in the West Riding Regiment, the Duke of Wellington's, the parent regiment of his old local Territorial unit and was given the number 31458. This number suggests he was not in the 1/5th Battalion (T.F.) but a regular battalion and may have been in Belgium from very early in the War. The size of his war gratuity however, may imply a more limited period of service.

At some point he was transferred to the South Staffordshire Regiment.[1]

From 20 September 1917 the battalion was involved in the Third Battle of Ypres and specifically in the Battle of Polygon Wood on 26 September when Harry was killed. He is buried in the large Tyne Cot Cemetery with over 3500 other identified casualties and is remembered in St. Stephen's and was on the Roll of Honour at the Zion Church on Lidget Street.

Crosland Woodhouse died in August 1930 and Elizabeth in January 1941 aged 90. Both are buried in the family plot at East Street Methodist Church.

Huddersfield's Roll of Honour: 1914-1922

The following extract is from Huddersfield's Roll of Honour: 1914-1922 (2014) by J. Margaret Stansfield:

WOODHOUSE, HARRY LANCASTER. Private. No 40807. 2/5th Battalion South Staffordshire Regiment. Formerly No 31458 Duke of Wellington's Regiment. Born Thorncliffe Street, Lindley, Huddersfield. Son of Crosland and Elizabeth Woodhouse, 2 Croft House Lane, Marsh. Was employed for 23 years as a woollen warehouseman by Messrs Martin, Sons and Company Limited and afterwards by Messrs C.TYNE COT CEMETERY. Grave location:- Plot 45, Row C, Grave 12.
ROH:- Marsh War Memorial; Lindley Zion United Methodist Church; St. Stephen's Church, Lindley.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission



Notes and References

  1. Probably after that battalion was brought out of Ireland after Easter 1916.