Albert Honour

1892/3 - 1917

Born at Fencott, Albert became a farm labourer. He fought at the Somme and saw the first use of tanks.

Son of a cowman

Albert David Honour was born at Fencott, the first child of David and Ellen Honour. By 1901 the family were living at Beckley on the other side of Otmoor, where David was a cowman. But in 1911 they were back in Murcott, close to Fencott. Albert, now 18, had three younger siblings and was a farm labourer.

Fought at the Somme

After war broke out Albert joined the 2/4th Battalion of the Oxford and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry as a Private. It was a territorial unit which recruited many local men, possibly including George Cooper who was several years younger and is also remembered on the Murcott chapel memorial. The battalion reached France in May 1916 but was not in action at the Somme until November, when the battle was coming to an end.

First use of tanks

During 1917 the unit was deployed more extensively: at the battle of St Quentin in March-April, at the raid on Fayet in April, and at Arras in May-June. In August they were in action again at Hill 35 in the third battle of Ypres. They fought at Cambrai from September to December when tanks were used for the first time and proved effective, but all their initial gains were lost in the German counter-attack.

Died at Cambrai

Albert’s unit was relieved at Cambrai on 7 December 1917, but sadly his luck had run out on 6th, and he was killed. His body was not recovered. He was 24 and had been promoted to Lance Corporal: he is remembered on the Cambrai memorial.

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