Warlencourt British Cemetery, France - Funeral Service for Pte Parker
Funeral Service for Private Henry Parker - KIA 26 September 1916
5th Battalion Alexandra - Princess of Wales's Own Yorkshire Regiment
Pte Henry Parker was born on 29 September 1893 in the small hamlet of Weaverthorpe in the Wolds of North Yorkshire. He was just three days short of his 23rd birthday when he was killed in action during the Battle of the Somme on 26 September 1916.
Upon completing his elementary education, Henry found work first as a plough boy and then, when a little older, as a horseman. By the time of the 1911 census, he was working on the Swaythorpe farm just north of the village of Kilham.
Henry enlisted in the Territorial Force 5th Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment on 8 January 1915 and joined his Battalion in the field in France in November 1915 as part of a draft of reinforcements. The greater part of Henry's service at the front with his Battalion was in holding the line in the Ypres sailent. It was not until early August 1916 that his Battalion was redeployed from Flanders, along with the other units of the 50th Northumbrian Division, to the Somme.
It was there that Henry met his death on 26 September 1916 when his Battalion was involved in an incremental advance towards Flers from the "Starfish" line. Henry's body was never recovered from the battlefield until the soil of a farmer's field yielded up his remains almost a century later.