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James Kenny

Private James Kenny. Authors image

1778 Private

11th Battalion Royal Scots, 27th Infantry Brigade, 9th (Scottish) Division

Age: 25

Date of Death: 12.2.16

Buried: Rifle House Cemetery I.E.9

Family history: Son of Mary Kerrigan, 7 Baxters Wynd, Falkirk. He had a brother Francis and a sister Margaret. John or James Kenny or Kerrigan was employed as a moulder before he enlisted. He went to France on 23 November 1914.

The action leading to his death

The 9th Division, from 26 January 1916 to the end of May 1916, occupied the front line trenches at Ploegsteert Wood, for ever known to the Tommie's as ’Plugstreet’ They worked on a six days in and six days out rota in the trenches. This was a comparatively quiet sector of the line and the Divisional history refers to this period as ‘..the Division experienced one of its most enjoyable times in France.’ Life was not altogether a picnic, as the wood was intermittently shelled and the trenches subjected to heavy bombardments. The worst experience fell to the 11/Royal Scots who were in the trenches opposite the German salient known to the British as the ‘Birdcage’ on account of the tangle of wire which protected this salient. Mining operations were undertaken against this salient, and the infantry provided working parties for this purpose. They also provided working parties to ensure that the trenches were firmly revetted, numerous fire steps were built, and the communication trenches were kept in good condition. On the 12 February 1916, the battalion were providing working parties of 250 men for the Royal Engineers and during this activity James was killed.

Linesman. Rifle House Cemetery. Ypres Salient. Flanders. Falkirk District

He would have known Private Thomas Hughes from Kerse Lane, Falkirk who was in the same battalion and killed in the same action. He is also buried in Rifle House Cemetery.

Medals Awarded:

1915 Star, The British War Medal, Victory Medal.

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