Private, 240084, John Entwistle – Missing Presumed Dead

8th Royal Lancaster Regiment, 26th September 1917

Royal Lancaster Regiment Cap Badge, similar to the one which would have been worn by John Entwistle.

De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour

An extract from De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour states:- Entwistle, John, Private, No. 240084, 5th (Territorial) Battalion, The King’s Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), 2nd son of John Thomas Entwistle, of Poulton-le-Fyde, Bricklayer, by his wife, Margaret, daughter of Elijah Simmons, Schoolmaster; and brother to Private H. Entwistle; born Poulton View, Carleton-le-Fyde, 5 December 1890; educated Christ Church School, Bolton; was a Labourer; joined the Royal Lancaster Territorials 6 May, 1910; was called up on mobilisation 5 August 1914; served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from February 1915; was wounded at the Meuse, 23 March following, and again at Loos 23 October 1915; was reported wounded and missing after the fighting at St. Quentin 26 September 1917, and is now assumed to have been killed in action on or about that date.


The British Army Records for John Entwistle are burnt and in a poor condition, however, they show that he enlisted on 6 May 1910, serving in the 5th Battalion of The Royal Lancaster Regiment as number 1070, he then served in the 8th Battalion of the same regiment as Private 240084.

His attestation papers describe his previous occupation as a Groom, his vision and physical development as normal. It also states that he was eighteen and a half years of age at that time.

  • Height – 5’3″
  • Chest 33″ plus 2.5 inches expanded

He served in the France / Belgium Theatres of War arriving there on 14 February 1915.

  • 18 March 1915 John is shown as having been wounded in action with a Gun Shot Wound to his left leg.
  • 19 March 1915 – 15th Field Ambulance to No.8 Casualty Clearing Station.
  • 20 March 1915 – Admitted to Australian Field Hospital.
  • Unknown date – Transferred to England via H.M. Hospital Ship St. Patrick.

The Records show a further injury which appears at a different date but the records are really difficult to read due to their condition. It looks like 4 November 1915 to 31 December 1915 – Shrapnel Left (Unknown word)

His disciplinary record is not complete but the ones that can be read show

  • Absent Without Leave from 22/9/16 to 26/9/16 – Punishment – 7 days confined to barracks.
  • Absent Without Leave from 31/12/16 to 1/1/17 – Punishment – 5 days confined to barracks.
  • Absent from Parade 2/1/17 – 2 days confined to barracks.

John was missing in action between 26-29 September 1917 and it is believed his death was on the 26th. He honoured and remembered at the Tyne Cot Memorial, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

War Diary of the 8th Royal Lancaster Regiment

The following entry relates to the War Diary of the 8th Royal Lancaster Regiment on the 26th September 1917 the day John Entwistle went missing and was presumed killed.

Location – In Line – 26th September 1917

At 1 a.m. all watches were synchronised. All companies reported in position by 12.45 a.m.. The Gordons on our left and the 50th Australians on the right. Zero hour – 5.50 a.m.. At 7.10 a.m. note from 2nd Lieutenant Brunwin to the effect that B Company had reached the objective. 9 a.m. – Lieutenant Johnston reported at Battalion Headquarters; he was wounded in arm and head. 9.10 a.m. – Captain Whitaker visited Corps at TOLIO and MUHLE – Shelling very heavy. Report on situation sent to Brigade. 10.15 a.m. – Commanding Officer and Lieutenant Williams started for new line. 10.45 a.m. – Report from 50th Australians “Red Line Garrisoned”. Companies in touch with companies on flanks. Casualties light. 11.45 a.m. – Z Company of the N.F. Regiment moved from HANNEBEEK WOOD to our original front-line. Company Sergeant-Major Moylin organised a party to carry water from RAILWAY WOOD to Battalion Headquarters. 2.15 p.m. – Message from Captain Skerrett asking for permission to return to MUHLE line, owing to exceptionally heavy shelling. Commanding Officer replied to the effect that ‘A’ Company must hold on at all costs. 4.55 p.m. – The C.O. of the Suffolks asked for one of our Companies to re-inforce his front line. At the same time an enemy counter-attack was spotted massing in front of our line. It was caught by our artillery and smashed up. 5.25 p.m. – Captain Morgan returned from front line and went to Brigade to report position of Companies etc. 2nd Lieutenant Brunwin reported suffering from very severe shell shock. 8.10 p.m. – 2nd Lieutenant Guffie arrived with rations. 8.20 p.m. – 2nd Lieutenant Campbell (1st Gordons) reported to Battalion Headquarters and showed position of his Battalion. 9.20 p.m. – The Commanding Officer went to Brigade to report on the situation etc. During the hours of 11.20 p.m. (26th) and 5 a.m. (27th) shelling was normal.


John Entwistle was born on 5 December 1890.

In the 1901 Census his family was shown as living at 6 Clough Street, Bolton, Lancashire and in the 1911 Census the family is shown at 6 Burlington Avenue, Poulton-le-Fylde, Blackpool, the family were listed as:-

  • Mother – Margaret Simmons or Entwistle, born at Ingleton, Durham c.1863.
  • Father – John Thomas Entwistle, born c.1861 – occupation – Bricklayer.
  • Sister – Mary Entwistle, born at Poulton, Lancs. c.1886 – Occupation – Cotton Cleaner.
  • Brother – Harry Entwistle born at Poulton, Lancs. c.1888.
  • Brother – Albert Herbert Entwistle born at Blackburn, Lancs. 26 July 1895.
  • Sister – Louisa Entwistle born at Bolton, Lancs. c.1897.
  • Sister – Margaret Entwistle born at Bolton, Lancs. c.1898.
  • Sister – Horrie Entwistle at Poulton, Lancs. c.1907.

John’s brother, Albert Entwistle was also killed in action on the 3 May 1918.


Following his death, John Entwistle was awarded the 1914-15 Star, Victory and British War Medals.


He is honoured and remembered on the Birtenshaw Methodist Church War Memorial, Bolton, Lancashire.

Birtenshaw Methodist Church Memorial where John Entwistle is honoured and remembered. © Julie Lamara (WMR-43706)

Links to Additional Information


  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
  • Medal Index Card.
  • Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914-1919.
  • 1901 Census.
  • 1911 Census.
  • Register of Soldiers Effects.
  • Medal Roll – Royal Lancaster Regiment 1914-15 Star.
  • Medal Roll – Royal Lancaster Regiment – British War and Victory Medals.
  • British Army Service Record (Burnt).


Contributor :-

  • Vincent Stuart
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