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Horace Seaton

Date of birth: 1890
Date of death: 31.07.1917
Area: Outwood, Wakefield
Regiment: The Kings (Liverpool)
Family information: Son of Albert Henry and Rose Seaton
Rank: Rifleman
Service number: 49797

War Service

In the absence of his service record, it is not certain when Horace Seaton joined the Army. However, he was employed at Lofthouse Colliery when he enlisted, initially joining the Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment). At this time Private Horace Seaton was given service number 16964. He was later transferred to the 1/5th Battalion, The Kings (Liverpool Regiment).
The 1/5th Battalion, The Kings (Liverpool Regiment) arrived in France to join the British Expeditionary Force on 22nd February 1915. At this time the Battalion, a Territorial Force, was part of 6th Brigade, 2nd Division. On 7th January 1916 the 1/5th Battalion was transferred to the 165th Brigade, 55th (West Lancashire) Division. The 55th Division was concentrated around the Hollencourt area, before moving to the front line south of Arras.
The 55th Division was still in this area when, on 1st July 1916, the Battle of the Somme began. However, after the battle had been raging for three weeks, the Division moved south to the battle zone. By the 1st August, the 1/5th Battalion, Kings (Liverpool) was providing working parties to the front line. On the 8th August the 1/5th Battalion was deployed in an unsuccessful attack on the village of Guillemont. Here they incurred 311 casualties, before being relieved the following day. Throughout August and September the 1/5th Kings (Liverpool) was engaged in front line duties within the Somme battle zone.
However on 2nd October 1916 the 1/5th Battalion, in Brigade, entrained at Port Remy bound for the Ypres sector. During the winter months the Salient was comparatively quiet, with no major attacks taking place, but still under constant artillery fire from the enemy.
The Battle of Pilckem, a phase of the Third Battle of Ypres, began on the 31st July 1917. The attack, on an 18 km front, was preceded by a preliminary bombardment which started on 18th July 1917. The 55th (West Lancashire) Division occupied the trenches south of Wieltje and was to attack the area around Spree, Pond and Schuler farm. 165th Brigade was on the right of the Divisional attack, with the 1/5th The Kings (Liverpool) Regiment on the left of their assault line.
Late on the 30th July, the 1/5th Kings (Liverpool) moved into their assembly trenches. At 3.50 hrs on the 31st July, a particularly dark morning, the assault began. The 1/5th Battalion, alongside the 1/6th Kings (Liverpool), advanced with the barrage and carried the enemy’s front line, meeting very little opposition. On reaching the Blue Line, enemy machine-guns became very active from Plum Farm, which was beyond the 1/5th Battalion objectives. Though the 1/5th Kings (Liverpool) captured about 100 German infantrymen, they incurred a number of casualties. These casualties numbered 26 killed in action, 109 wounded and 45 missing.
One of these casualties was Private Horace Seaton, who was reported missing, believed killed in action. Horace Seaton was not recovered from the battlefield and consequently he has no known grave. However his name is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial to the missing at Ypres. There are more than 54,000 names of officers and men, whose graves are unknown, commemorated on this Memorial.

Family Life

Horace Seaton was born on 21st July 1890, the third son of Albert Henry Seaton and his wife Rose, nee Wild. Later, on Christmas Day 1890, he was baptised at St Mary Magdalene Church, Outwood. His father, Albert Henry Seaton, was a coal miner and the family home was at Lingwell Gate, Outwood. On leaving school Horace Seaton obtained employment at the local coal mine, working as a screener on the surface. His father died, at the age of 59 years and was buried on 3rd April 1913, after a service at St Mary Magdalene Church, Outwood.

Menin Gate Memorial Menin Gate Memorial

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