Alfred George Richards 1893-1915

2303 Lance Corporal 1/6th Battalion Manchester Regiment

Alfred Richards was born in Bridgwater in October 1893, the son of George James Richards and Miranda Jane Richards. George was a Grocer's assistant and Alfred had six siblings by 1901. The family lived in Fernbank on the Wembdon Road. In 1911 Alfred, aged 17, was working as an 'Improver', he was unmarried and living at home.

Alfred enlisted soon after war was declared. On 14 October 1914 the Bridgwater Mercury reported 'THREE SONS SERVING THEIR COUNTRY: Mr WG Richards Mechanical Section ASC, Mr CG Richards 5th Somersets, Mr AG Richards 6th Battalion Manchester Regiment'. On the 9 July 1915 the Mercury printed a letter Alfred had sent home describing the action and the conditions at Gallipoli: 'THE DARDANELLES STRUGGLES: EXCITING FIGHTS WITH THE TURKS: DESCRIPTIVE LETTER FROM A BRIDGWATER SOLDIER . Pte AG Richards, 6th Battalion Manchester Regiment, part of the East Lancs Division: letter to home Mr George Richards, Fernbank, Wembdon Rd, Bridgwater'

Alfred was killed soon afterwards on the 11 July 1915. He was 21 years old. On 4 August 1915 the Mercury reported 'BRIDGWATER SOLDIER KILLED IN THE DARDANELLES: SHOT WHILE LEAVING THE TRENCHES. Pte Alfred George ("Counsell") Richards of the 6th Manchesters'. This letter quoted the letter from his platoon commander. A formal note of his death was also carried by the newspaper on 11 August.

His grave is lost, but he is commemorated on panel 158 to 170 on the Helles Memorial to the fallen of the Gallipoli campaign in the Dardanelles, Turkey.

His name was later added to his parents memorial in the Wembdon Road Cemetery, memorial 1050, which inscription reads: 'In Loving Memory of George Richards who fell asleep December 3rd 193x. Alfred G Richards killed in action July 15th 1915 aged 21. Also Miranda Jane Richards who died April 20th 1937 aged 83 years'.