CAPT. G. WOODS. LOND.R.
George Woods was born on 11 May 1894 in Bamber Bridge and baptised at Walton Le Dale, St Leonard’s, on 10 June. His father was John Woods (b. 1869 in Walton Le Dale), a local building contractor. His mother was Mary Rigby Rawcliffe (b. 1868 in Bamber Bridge). John and Mary were married in 1893; George was born the following year and they had a daughter, Mary Gladys, in 1897. In 1911, the family was living at 61 Chorley Road, Walton Le Dale. George was at school – he attended Preston Grammar School – and later that year he went to Abingdon School, in Berkshire, where he prepared to go to university. He went up to Keble College, Oxford, in 1913 and he was there preparing to take Holy Orders when War broke out.
George enlisted at the outbreak of War and in January 1915 gained a commission with the 9th (County of London) Battalion, the London Regiment (Queen Victoria’s Rifles). He was promoted to Lieutenant, then Captain. From 10 February 1916, 1/9Bn came under orders of 169th Brigade in 56th (1st London) Division. The Division landed in France in February 1916. It took part in a diversionary attack at Gommecourt on the opening day of the Battle of the Somme but it was at Ginchy on 9 September that George was killed. He was 22 years old. Ginchy had been stoutly defended by the Germans and its capture deprived the Germans of observation posts from which they could survey the whole battlefield and eliminated the salient at Delville Wood. Although the attack was successful, it did not come without cost: 64 officers and men from the Queen Victoria’s Rifles were killed that day.
Date of Death: 09/09/1916
Regiment/Service: London Regiment (Queen Victoria's Rifles), 1st/9th Bn.
Cemetery/Memorial reference: Pier and Face 9 C.
Memorial: THIEPVAL MEMORIAL
There is a commemorative stained glass window in St Leonard’s church dedicated to George Woods, see here.