No.51377, Private, Clement Philip Ernest RASH
2nd Battalion, Manchester Regiment
Clement Philip Ernest RASH was born in Haverhill (Risbridge Q3-1894 4A:627), son of Walter and Miriam RASH (née FREEMAN)
1901 census...Aged 6, he was at 32 Burton End, Haverhill with his father Walter RASH  Warehouse clerk; his mother Miriam; brothers Walter  warehouse clerk and Herbert  brewery clerk; sisters Florence  and Elsie . All were born in Haverhill.
1911 census...Aged 16, apprentice cycle fitter, he was at 32 Vine Cottages, Haverhill with his parents; brother Walter; sisters Florence (sewing machinist) and Elsie. One sibling had died.
He married Nellie HART (Risbridge Q4-1915 4A:2628) but she died aged 22 in 1916 (Risbridge Q4-1916 4A:1001)
He registered in Luton and 2nd March 1916 and was placed on reserve.Giving his age as 22 years 7 months, he was a fitter, living at 19 Liverpool Road, Luton, next of kin, his father at 32 Vine Cottages, Haverhill. He was 5 feet 3.5 inches (161.3 cm)tall, weighed 121 lbs (55.1 kg) , chest 32" to 33.5" (81.3 to 85.1 cm)
He was mobilised on 5th March 1917 and posted to the Training Reserve Battalion at Dover and to the 3rd Battalion, The Buffs on 17th May 1917. Quickly transferred to 3rd East Surrey on 30th May, on posting tot he BEF in France on 3rd July he was again transferred, this time to the 2nd Battalion, Manchester Regiment. At some time it appears his documents got mixed up with a man from Union Square, Queen Street, Haverhill but the part that names this man is missing.
In correspondence with the War Office his father states that another son, W.J.H. Rash was 205991 Corporal in 2nd/6th Devonshire Regimenton service in Trimulgherry, India. This must have been Walter junior. On Army Form 5080 his father in 1919 gave living relatives as parents and sister Elsie at 32 Vine Cottages, brother Walter  at Mount Road, Haverhill, brother Herbert  at 37 Elsthorne Park Road, Hanwell and sister Florence SMITH at 14 Primrose Hill, Haverhill.
The South West Suffolk Echo of 26th October 1918 reported:-
"Mr. and Mrs.Walter Rash jun., of 32 Burton End, Haverhill, have been officially informed that their son, Pte. Clement P.Ernest Rash, of the Manchester Regt., was killed in action in France on the 1st inst. Deceased, who was 24 years of age, was a widower, and resided at Luton when he joined up in March 1917. He proceeded to France in June last year. He was well known and much respected locally, having served his apprenticeship with Mr. Collin Smith."
The battalion war diary has:-
"Magny-la-Fosse - 1918 October 1st - Battalion still in the line east of MAGNY-LA-FOSSE. The battalion was ordered to attack enemy line, capture and hold enemy system and SWISS COTTAGE on the left flank. Battalion moved into position and attacked at zero hour, 4 pm with dispositions as follows:- 2 front Coys "C" and "D" - "A" Coy in Support -"B" Coy in reserve. The right objective was captured and held about 6:30 pm.Left objective ( SWISS COTTAGE) captured and held about 7 pm. Approximately between 150 and 200 prisoners were captured. All objectives gained were immediately consolidated and held. Casualties, 1 officer died of wounds, 7 wounded, 4 OR killed, 78 wounded, 7 missing."
CWGC figures have 27 of the battalion killed that day. Wilfred Owen was with "D" Coy that day and won his Military Cross
photo: Rodney Gibson
photo: Rodney Gibson
click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details
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