680839 L/BDR. G. SPENCER. MM. R.F.A.
(My thanks to Theresa Hargreaves, George's granddaughter, who sent me the photos.)
George Spencer was born on 17 October 1897. His father was Richard Spencer (b. 1872 in Walton Le Dale), a railway signalman. His mother was Matilda Massey (b. 1865 in Farington). Matilda was baptised at Farington St Paul’s, but the couple were married at Brownedge St Mary’s in 1896 and George, their only child, was brought up a Catholic. In 1911, at the age of 13, George had started work as a cotton weaver, and the family lived at 19 Brownedge Lane, Bamber Bridge.
George enlisted with the other Briggers in the Royal Field Artillery in May 1915 and he served with “C” Battery in 286 Brigade. The announcement of his Military Medal was made in the London Gazette on 23 February 1918 (p. 2431), indicating that he won the award during the latter phases of the Battle of Passchendaele in November the previous year.
George survived the War and in 1921 married Ellen Rigby (b. 1901 in Bamber Bridge) and the couple had two sons, Richard Arnold and James Cyril, and a daughter, Theresa. George died in 1988 at the age of 91.
George's brother-in-law was 680323 Gnr James Rigby, also in 286 Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.
The photo below is of George and his comrades, probably at Arras in November 1918.