Byrne, Francis (Frank)

Frank Byrne was born in Rhyl, Flintshire during 1894.

The 1911 Census shows that the family at that time lived at 14 Windsor Street, Rhul, Flintshire. The head of the family was Patrick Byrne aged 51, who was employed as a Tinsmith.  His wife Catherine Byrne aged 50 and their 7 (seven) children – Bessie Byrne aged 25, Thomas Byrne aged 21, also employed as a Tinsmith, Edward Byrne aged 20, a Clerk, Frank Byrne aged 17, Errand Boy, Catherine Byrne aged 14, Hugh Byrne aged 11 and Joseph Byrne aged 10 years.

On Tuesday 23 March 1915 Frank enlisted as a Private with the 17th Battalion. Manchester Pals Regiment at The Town Hall, Albert Square, Manchester.  Following initial training at Heaton Park, Manchester, the Battalion travelled to Belton Park, Grantham, Lincolnshire the Salisbury for more intense training.  On Monday 8 November 1915, Frank travelled with the Battalion to Folkestone and then by ship to Boulogne.

My Great Uncle Private No. 8207 Harold Knowlson, 17th Battalion, Manchester Pals Regiment served with Frank Byrne in France at that time and he was wounded on 1 July 1916 at Montauban and died of his wounds two days later on Monday 3 July 1916, he was 18 years of age.

On 18 June 1917, a payment of £5.18s.10d was made by the War Office to Patrick Byrne, this being monies owed to his son Frank.  On 27 October 1919, a further payment which is recorded as a War Gratuity of £6.10s.0d was also made to him.

Thiepval Memorial

Thiepval Memorial

Photograph taken at Thiepval Memorial, showing the name of Private Frank Byrne on Pier and Face 13A & 14C of Memorial.

Frank’s brother Hugh Byrne was also killed during the First World War and he is also remembered on the Rhyl War Memorial.

Frank is also remembered on The North Wales Heroes Memorial Arch, Deiniol Road, Bangor, North Wales and on a Remembrance Plaque at The Royal Alexandra Hospital, Marine Drive, Rhyl, Flintshire.

There is a Flintshire Roll of Honour Card for Frank Byrne at the County Archives Office, Hawarden dated 16 October 1919, signed R. Owen.

Learn more about the other soldiers on the Rhyl Memorial

Back to top