Post by henderson on Oct 2, 2014 13:31:26 GMT
Thomas Edge was born 1890 in St. Simon's parish, Salford. He was the third eldest of 9 children.
Single and formerly a 'Warehouse Plater' he enlisted RMLI October 1911. Trained Deal and assigned to Portsmouth Division.
Served August 1913-July 1914 HMS Philomel (Australia station). Served HMS Psyche August 1914 - December 2015. Landed German Samoa 29th August 2014 (unopposed). Started to escort ANZAC troops to Gallipoli from Australia but engine failure caused Psyche to turn back. Re-posted to Burma patrolling coast.
Transferred to HMS Lama January 2016 and spent that year patrolling Red Sea. A photograph of TE Lawrence aboard HMS Lama is in existence (March 1917).
Two 'superior' ratings in this time (rare for marines apparently) lead to return to Portsmouth Division in England and promotion to Corporal (July 1917). Served on HMS Attentive on Dover Patrol until September 1917. Likely shortages of manpower at the front led to his being posted to France January 1918, where fate puts him in the front line with 1st Bn RMLI (Royal Naval Division) 21st March 1918 in the Flesquieres salient. This section had recently been taken over by the British from the French and was poorly defended. It was the opening day of the German Spring Offensive.
At 04:35 a heavy German barrage began along a 40 mi (64 km) front. Trench mortars, mustard gas, chlorine gas, tear gas and smoke canisters were concentrated on the forward trenches, while heavy artillery bombarded rear areas to destroy Allied artillery and supply lines. Over 3,500,000 shells were fired in five hours, hitting targets over an area of 150 sq mi (390 km2) in the biggest barrage of the war. The RND, at the join of the British 3rd and 5th Armies initially held position but were ordered to withdraw on the 22nd March since both flanks were being overwhelmed. Thomas Died of Wounds on 22nd March 1918. He has no known grave, but is commemorated on the Arras memorial.
Proud son of Salford. Never to be forgotten.