James Leatherbarrow and his brother Eric Leatherbarrow both appear on the memorial. Their story is a sad one in which their mother Annie plays a big part. (Follow the link to Eric’s page on this website)
Except for their military careers, both boys’ family stories are the same. They appear on a census for the first time in 1901. Their parents’ were James and Annie Leatherbarrow ( nee Minard). They had married in Wigan in 1890 ( Volume 8c Page 111). They were living at 49, Franklin Road, Gillingham, Kent. James, 34, was a Blacksmith who had been born in Wigan, Lancashire. His wife Annie L, 30 had been born in Liverpool, Lancashire. Their listed children were Lilian M. 9 (born in Liverpool) James M. 7 ( born in Wigan) and son Eric 2 (born in Burslem, Staffordshire).
The 1911 census records that the father James, 45 was still a blacksmith and was in Bolton, at 248 Church St Westhoughton, Lancashire. He was listed as head of the household. No-one else was in the house. His family was recorded at 10, Kirby Grove Shotton, Flintshire. Annie Lilian 42, was recorded as having been married for 20 years. Four children had been born and all were still living. The listed children were James Minard, 17, who worked as a steel smelter, probably at John Summer’s & Sons Steelworks in Shotton. Eric 12 and Bertram 9 were at school.
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919 accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk confirms James’s regimental information above left and also tell us that he was born in Wigan, Lancashire, his residence was Shotton and he enlisted in Connah’s Quay. Hiis medal card, also on ‘Ancestry’, details his medal entitlement and tells us that he entered his first Theatre of War, the Dardanelles (Gallipoli) on the 8th August 1915 , 2 days later he was killed in Action on the 10th August 1915, aged 21.
There is an index card for James in The Flintshire Roll of Honour at The County Record Office in Hawarden. (F14 Queensferry). It quotes the address 13, Brookside, Garden City, Queensferry and confirms his regimental details. His period of Service: was 5 yrs in the Territorials. There is a comment written by his mother, “Murdered in the Dardenelles by the wait and see Government, is 15/- a week all a great full King & Country can give a Mother for 2 good sons”. Signed by Annie L. Leatherbarrow 14th September 1920
Mrs. Annie Leatherbarrow was so angry about what had happened to her sons that she wrote a ‘letter’ on the back of their cards, starting on the one and continuing on the other. To read follow the link above to Eric’s page on this website.
James Leatherbarrow along with his brother Eric is remembered on the Memorial Plaque in St. Andrew’s Church, Garden City, St. Ethelwold’s Church Roll of Honour which is in the Lady Chapel to the left of the Alter and the Roll of Honour in the Queensferry War Memorial Institute.
His sister only Lilian was involved in the war as this newspaper cutting tells us:-
FLINTSHIRE OBSERVER & NEWS – 5th September 1918
MILTARY NEWS – Private Eric Leatherbarrow has been killed in France. He worked at Messrs Summer’s Ironworks and lived at the Garden City, Queensferry. His eldest brother was killed in the Dardanelles battles, and a sister is now serving as a Red Cross Nurse.