James Stokoe

1893 - 1915

James was born in County Down, Ireland. He excelled in his first year exams at Oxford, but did not complete his degree and died at Gallipoli.

Son of a surgeon dentist

James Clarke Stokoe was born in County Down, Ireland, in 1893.  His father was a surgeon dentist, but seems to have died in 1896, so that at the 1901 census James was living with his Methodist mother and two brothers in Newry.

Manchester Grammar School

In 1911 James was living in Cheetham Hill with his grandmother, and studying at Manchester Grammar School, which he had attended from 1906. He then went to Corpus Christ College, Oxford, in 1912, and in the exams at the end of his first year he achieved First Class in Classics.

Sailed for Gallipoli

James began his war service in March 1915, without completing his degree. After his training he sailed for Gallipoli, arriving on 14 November to join the 6th Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment as a Second Lieutenant. They had landed at Anzac Cove on 4 August as reinforcements, for a renewed but disastrous offensive that left the Allies trapped under constant fire from Ottoman troops on higher ground. Conditions were appalling, and the Allies suffered heavy casualties not only in combat but also from disease and severe heat.

Withdrawal planned

By the time James arrived, plans were in hand for withdrawal, but this did not take place in time to avert his death in action on 11 December at Chocolate Hill. He was aged 22 and is buried in Green Hill Cemetery, Suvla. He is also commemorated in the Irish records of World War I.

 

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