Private 15333 Thomas Lambert Bailey

Bailey Thomas 96 431x600Bailey Thomas Lambert 96 617x500

Died of Wounds on Wednesday, 11th August 1915, age 27.
Buried in Grave I. A. 8. at Portianos Military Cemetery, Lemnos, Greece.

7th Bn., South Staffordshire Regiment. 33rd Brigade of 11th Division.

of Gilbert Street, Tividale, Tipton, Staffs.
Born: Dudley, Enlisted: Tipton, Resident: Tividale.

First landed Balkans, 21st July 1915.
Medal entitlement: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.
Soldier's Papers at National Archives did not survive.

Commemorated on the St. Augustine's Memorial.
Commemorated here because his death was reported in the Tipton Herald.

Link to Commonwealth War Graves Site: www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/626710/

Genealogical Data

1901 Census
34 Tipton Road, Tividale, Staffs.
William Bailey (62, Stationary Engine Driver, born Dudley), his wife Maria (60, born Rowley Regis), and their 5 children: Thomas (26, Coal Miner, born Rowley Regis), George (22, Coal Miner, born Rowley Regis), Sarah (20, born Rowley Regis), Maria (16, born Rowley Regis), and Lambeth (14, Brickyard Labourer, born Rowley Regis). Also 2 grandsons: William (15, Brickyard Labourer, born Rowley Regis), and John (13, born Rowley Regis).

1911 Census
31 Tipton Road, Tividale, Staffs.
Thomas Bailey (37, Brickyard Labourer, born Rowley Regis), his brother David (34, Canal Boatman, born Rowley Regis), his sister Sarah (28, born Rowley Regis), and his brother Lambeth (22, Brickyard Labourer, born Rowley Regis).

Personal Data

There is a lack of certainty over the correct name for Thomas Lambert Bailey. The 1901 and 1911 census records him as Lambeth Bailey, 2 sets of army records as Thomas Lambert Bailey, and another set of army records as Thomas Lamberth Bailey. It is almost certain that his birth was registered as 'Lambert Baylis' in October quarter 1887 in Dudley, the date matches and the mother's maiden name (Parkes) is correct.

The Tipton Herald of 1915 says "of Gilbert Street, Tividale". The Tividale Roll of Honour (1919) says" 33 Tipton Road, Tividale" which is adjacent to his dwelling in 1911.

After Thomas's death, his outstanding army pay and allowances amounted to £3/16/3d (3 pounds, 16 shillings and 3 pence); this was shared between his siblings: Joseph T., Sarah, George H., Mrs Annie Collins and Mrs Anne Maria Dudley, and his nephew William Bailey in November 1915. A futher sum of 6 shillings was paid to his brother Joseph T. in January 1916 "for distribution". His War Gratuity was £3/0/0d (3 pounds exactly), this was paid to his brother, Joseph T., in September 1919. The value of the War Gratuity suggests that Thomas had enlisted within the previous 12 months.

Action resulting in his death

On August 6th the 7th South Staffs took part in the landings at 'B' beach Suvla Bay, two days later the 7th South Staffs took part in an attack on Chocolate and Scimitar Hill which went disastrously wrong. The 'History of the 7th South Staffs' reports 400 casualties, this is highly likely as 10 men were killed on the 8th August, and 121 on the 9th August. Thomas Lambert Bailey could well have been wounded on the 8th or 9th August, as he died of wounds on 11th August, and is buried in Portianos Military Cemetery, on the island of Lemnos.

If you require greater detail:
A short extract from the 7th South Staffs War Diary of the events of the 8/9th August written by the Second in command of the 7th South Staffs Lt-Colonel A. Tool:
"Most of that night, the 8/9th, we spent in very slowly working our way back to the 33rd Brigade rendezvous. It was not really a very long way, but the dense scrub necessitated "snake" formation, and every time there was a check, which was very often, men dropped down asleep, and had to be kicked up by the officers.

As far as I can remember we were quite punctual at our rendezvous with the 6/Lincolns on our left, but the Borderers, who should have been on our right, were not in sight, and we were sent off and told that they would join in, which they did later on.

The right of the S.Staffs was to direct the 33rd Brigade on the line "Summit of Scimitar Hill - "W" Hill, and Col. Daukes ordered me to go forward with the leading troops and see that direction was accurately kept. To my horror I saw the companies starting to advance in the column of route, but I quickly ran up and shook them out into artillery formation, We had almost reached Scimitar Hill, the Borderers having come into place, when a Subaltern I was walking beside lit a cigarette and promptly dropped with a bullet in his forehead.

A moment later a Lincoln officer ran up to me and reported that Captain Martin, commanding the company I was with at the moment, was killed and that the Turks were just the other side of Chocolate Hill."

Following information taken from History of the Seventh South Staffordshire Regiment (Ashcroft):
9th August 1915
"At 06.00 we reached Hill 70 and at once came under murderous shrapnel and rifle fire. Every single officer in A & D companies (firing line) and in 'B' company (supporting line) were either killed or wounded in the first 10 minutes. At about 08.00 support arrived from the 10th Division, but even with their assistance no headway could be made. About 10.00 our line began to give way owing to the fact the scrub had caught fire, the Turks aided by this were working around our left. This flanking movement was checked by reinforcements of Dublins and Queens.

The battalion behaved magnificently but were overwhelmed by an enemy who had every position of advantage. On the 10th August, the losses in killed and wounded were computed to be well over 400. For three days, the Staffords and Borderers held an old Turkish communication trench running on to Chocolate Hill, and were then relieved by the 32nd Brigade."

Newspaper Cuttings

Tipton Herald August 28 1915
The death has been officially announced at Tividale of Private Lambert Bailey of Gilbert Street, who served in the 2nd South Staffs. Shortly after the arrival of the letter from the War Office, five of the deceased's colleagues marched to the recruiting office stating that they were determined to avenge the death of Bailey.