Gretton soldier remembered as part of First World War commemorations

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The 100th anniversary of the death of a Gretton soldier in the First World War will be commemorated today (Saturday).

Corby Council is marking the 100th anniversaries of each local soldier’s death in the conflict as part of its ongoing commemoration of the war.

Downes Ireland was born in Gretton in 1895. His father was Thomas Ireland, originally from Warwick and his mother was Ellen Ireland, originally from Oakham.

Downes Ireland served as a Private (205651) in the 1st/4th Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment) and although his service record has not survived, it is known that he enlisted at Tipton and was resident in Bilston.

He embarked for Europe sometime after the beginning of 1916.

His battalion had been in France from April 1916, having spent the earlier part of the war on coastal defence duties around Hull and Grimsby, followed by a period stationed in Doncaster.

Pte Ireland was killed in action on November 25, 1917. He is buried in the Dochy Farm British Cemetery near Ypres and is commemorated on the Gretton War Memorial and the Bradley Memorial, Bilston.

Further information on Private Ireland will be presented on the Cube helpdesk on the anniversary of his death this Saturday.

More information regarding the WWI commemorations can be found on Corby Council’s website,