Oldham Historical Research Group


WW1 serviceman

Richard Henry Stanley Owen
6th Battalion Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment) Private, No. 2798 (275719)
& 2nd Battalion Royal Scots, from March 1917
1893 - 1917

Richard Henry Stanley Owen was born in Manchester, in 1893.
He was the second son of Thomas Owen and his Manchester-born wife, Georgina (nee Wicks), his brother, Thomas Frederick, had been born in 1890

By the 1901 census the family was living in Allerton, near Bradford and in 1911 they are recorded as living at number 10, Bridson Street, in Clarksfield, Oldham. Elder brother Thomas was a railway clerk and Richard was working for the Oldham Co-Op.

A number of pages from Richard's Service Records have survived so we are able to know a little of his story.

His papers show that he attested on the 28th of January 1915 in Manchester. He enlisted in the Territorial Force 1st/6th Battalion, 'D' Company, of the Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment), for the statutory 4 years service. He chose to serve it in Edinburgh.
The 'General Conditions of the Contract of Enlistment' include the statement that, '... 2. Your service will be for a period of 4 years and you will be enlisted for a County and appointed to serve in such Corps for that county or for an area comprising the whole or part of that county as you may select ...'.
The papers also state, '... 16f. That you will be liable to serve in any place in the UK without further agreement, but not in any place outside the UK unless you voluntarily undertake to do so...' We can probably assume that at some point Richard must have signed an agreement to serve overseas. He was already serving outside the UK by the time conscription was introduced and the Territorial's option to remain on defensive duties at home had been removed.

Service Record Sheet
Did Richard subsequently decide to enlist in the regular army? One of the forms he filled in states that it is only to by used '.., for recruits enlisting direct into the Regular Army ...'

Service Record Sheet
When Richard joined the Battalion, in January 1915, they were part of the Scottish Coastal Defences around Peebles and remained so until September 1915 when they were sent to Egypt. The Battalion disembarked in Alexandria on the 15th September. They served in the Western Desert, in the Senussi Campaign in North Africa, as part of the Western Frontier Force.

On his Active Service sheet Richard is shown to have gained the qualification of, 'Machine Gun (1st Class Cert)'

This page also shows that in May 1916 the Battalion was deployed to France, disembarked in Marseilles on the 16th May and by June they were in Flanders.
On the 15th of June 1916 the depleted forces of the 1/5th and the 1/6th Battalions of the Royal Scots were amalgamated and became the 5/6th Battalion.

The page also records that he was posted to the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Scots, on the 16th March 1917, and joined 'B' 213, 'D' Company, in the field, on the following day.
Just over 6 weeks later, on the 3rd May 1917, he was killed by gunshot wounds to the head. He was in Front Line trenches at Monchy, with the 2nd Battalion (part of 56th division at that time).
Richard Henry Stanley Owen was buried in Duisans British Cemetery, 4 miles NW of Arras.

Medal Index card
Medal Index card


Richard's mother, Georgina, obtained a passport for herself and went in a coach party, every year, to visit her son's grave in France.
She died in 1941.

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

Service Record Sheet

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Contributed by : Deborah Lavin

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