Walter Batty (1894-1917)

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.

Huddersfield's Roll of Honour: 1914-1922

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

BATTYE, WALTER. Private. No 241773. 2/5th Battalion Duke of Wellington's Regiment. Born Holme. Son of Mr and Mrs George Battye. Educated at Holme Council School. Attended Holme Sunday School. Employed as a weaver at Digley Mills. Enlisted 18.3.1916. Embarked for France, 17.1.1917. Reported missing, presumed killed, at the Battle of Bullecourt, 3.5.1917. Has no known grave. Commemorated on the ARRAS MEMORIAL TO THE MISSING.
ROH:- Holme and Holmbridge War Memorial; Huddersfield Drill Hall.

Lives of the First World War

The following section is reproduced from the Imperial War Musuems' Lives of the First World War site under the terms of the IWM Non-Commercial Licence.

Walter Batty was born in Holme, West Yorkshire in the final quarter of 1894, the eldest of the three children of George and Emma Batty. On the 1911 census, the family are living at Pinfold Street, Holme and Walter aged 16 is shown as a Cloth Finisher.

Walter was called up in March 1916 and was posted to France in January 1917. In the same year, he was reported missing on 3 May 1917 at the Battle of Bullecourt, an event which caused the loss of nearly twenty local men. As was common in these circumstances, no further news was heard and the local paper published an appeal for information in March 1918. It read: “This week we are able to publish the photograph Private Walter Batty son of Mr and Mrs George Batty, of Holme. Even although several months have elapsed since Private Batty was last heard of, having been officially reported missing so long ago as May 3, 1917, his friends are not without hope that as a result the publication of the photograph and such details as are herewith given further information will be forthcoming. Prior to joining the West Riding Regt., Walter Batty was employed as a weaver at Digley Mills, and he enlisted on March 18th, 1916. Associated with a highly respected family, he was well known in the district having been brought up at Holme, where he attended the Council School as a boy and was also a scholar at Holme Sunday School. Then the war asserted its claims upon his manhood and in due course to the regimental circles he became identified as No. 241773 of the West Riding Regt. Batty went abroad on January 17th, 1917, but he was not long able to maintain his correspondence with his relatives and friends, for he was, as stated, reported missing at the beginning of May, 1917. Of course, his fellow soldiers probably possess information which would be of value to his relatives and in that event, we will render much appreciated service by communicating with his parents, Mr and Mrs George Batty, Holme, near Huddersfield – to give full postal address in order to facilitate correspondence.”

Walter was subsequently presumed to have been killed on the date he went missing.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission