WWI centenary: Family’s sad news of fallen father

Albert Roberts, a Batley Carr man who died during WWI.
Albert Roberts, a Batley Carr man who died during WWI.

The news of a WWI soldier’s death came to his wife just two days before his second son was born.

Pte Albert J Roberts, of Batley Carr, was thought to have died during the terrible Battle of Neuve Chapelle. His wife Clara named their new baby boy Albert in his honour.

Pte Roberts joined the Northumberland Fusiliers around 1906 and the 1911 Census records him as stationed in India. In 1913, he married Clara Whittaker at Holy Trinity Church, Batley Carr.

Albert had left the army and was now working as a willeyer at J T and J Taylor, Blakeridge Mills.

After moving to King Street in Batley Carr to start their married life their first son Eric was born later that year.

Clara lost her brother George Whittaker in the 1914 Battle of Mons.

And after Albert, 26, was called to action as a Reservist, he died on March 10 1915.

This story was sourced by Project Bugle, a Heritage Lottery-funded commemoration group who publish the stories of Batley and Birstall’s war dead in newsletters and exhibitions at local libraries.