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Clough, J., Pte., M.M and bar, 1917

Medal Index Card for Private Clough

Illustrated Chronicle 1915

Illustrated Chronicle 8th August 1914

RAMC at Hutton Terrace Drill Hall

Illustrated Chronicle 8th August 1914

RAMC leaving for France from Hutton Terrace

John [Jack] Clough was born on the 4th November 1898 at 41 Church Street, East Murton, Easington, Durham, to John Clough, [born 1847, Haswell], a Coal Miner Banksman above ground, working at Murton Colliery, and his wife Elizabeth, [born 1867, Murton], they had four children, John the eldest, Thomas born 1900, at Dunston, and Ruby Constance, born 1903, at Murton. Another child also called Thomas died about 1910.

They had married in 1897.

In 1911 the family had moved to Wardley and the father was now working at Wardley Colliery. They were all residing at 45 Third Street, Wardley Colliery.

John started work at the Colliery after completing his education. John [Jack] Clough had attested into the 1st Northumberland Field Ambulance at Hutton Terrace Drill Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne on the 13th November 1914, as a volunteer for 4 years. On his enlistment forms he is 5 feet 9 and a half inches tall, stating an age of 18 years 9 months, [he was just 17], service number was 1751 with the rank of private.

His residence address was stated at the time as 47 Third Street, Wardley Colliery, Durham. He attested for four years with the colours.

The 1st Northumbrian Field Ambulance was located at Cambridge Hall in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, this was formerly the Headquarters of the Northern Division R.A.M.C. It was positioned between St James's Congregational Church and the Brady and Martin Chemical Works, [occupied by private apartments now]. Today only the Church remains. The 1st Northumbrian Field Ambulance RAMC derived it's origins from the bearer company of the late 2nd Volunteer Battalion the Northumberland Fusiliers, now the 5th Battalion. There was a school of Instruction nearby, the Royal Victoria Infirmary, The Military Hospital and the School of Medicine.

The equipment in 1914 consisted of 3 Ambulance Wagons, 1 General Service Wagon, 1 Water Cart, 1 Hospital Marquee, 1 Operating and 4 Bell Tents and medical and surgical accessories. In 1912 40 men were in the Special Reserve.

Field Ambulances : Marriage of Bearer Company and Brigade Field Hospital. 3 per Infantry Division, [1 per Brigade], 9 MOs, 1 QM, and 224 ORs. A, B, and C sections, each with bearer and Tented elements. 10 Horse Drawn Ambulances.

He was embodied in to the Royal Army Medical Corps on the 16th February 1915 at Newcastle, service number now 386299.

He trained at Newcastle, Alnwick and Catterick.

He was transferred from the 1/1st Field Ambulance to the 3/1st Field Ambulance on the 28th December 1915. On the 7th March 1916 he is posted back to the 1/1st Field Ambulance. He is then awarded a Good Conduct Badge in November. He forfeits this badge due to "whilst on active service overstaying his leave, failing to return to R.T.O. London 6.30 am and remaining absent until 6.30 am 18th September 1917. 1 day". He was also given 7 days Field Punishment no 2, and forfeits 2 days pay.

1/1 Northumberland Field Ambulance was part of the 50th Northumbrian Division which did not go overseas until April 1915. Northumbrian Division spent a portion of 1914 and 1915 garrisoning the Tyne Defences.

John spent 1 year and 116 days in the UK until the 8th March 1916. John embarked for France from Southampton on the 9th March 1916, arriving at Le Havre on the 10th March 1916. Here with his unit he spent 2 years and 202 days. Then 13 days on leave in the UK from the 27th September 1918 to the 9th October 1918 departing from Boulogne.

The Ambulance unit was in the 50th Infantry Division.

On the 10th August, 1916, the Battalion entrained at Godewaersvelde, and detraining at Candas, marched to Heuzecourt and spent four days resting. The 15th, 16th and 17th were spent in marching through Vignacourt and Villers Bocage to Baizieux, where the men bivouaced in the wood. Here two accidents occurred. Major F. Walton, Second in Command, and Lieut. Ebsworth, M.C., Adjutant, were thrown from their horses and sustained broken limbs. 2nd Lieut. Kirkhouse resumed duties as Adjutant.

He was awarded a bar to his Military Medal for gallantry devotion to duty in action on Monday 21st October 1918.

In June 1918 he advised the army of a change of address of his parents to 6 Chapel Row, Portobello, Via Birtley, Co Durham. Next of kin Elizabeth his mother.

On December 29th 1918, John is granted seven days leave for duty, to return to the UK as he is a coal miner, via the Labour Corps camp at Boulogne, before being sent to Surbiton to be discharged.

John survived the War and after being discharged on the 31st March 1920, he returned to being a coal miner. He had served a total of 5 years and 140 days.

John [Jack] was also a professional football goalkeeper who made nearly 500 appearances in the Football League, mostly for Bradford Park Avenue.

Heslop’s Local Advertiser 24/11/1917 reports the award of gold watches and gold alberts with appendage to fellow workmen from Wardley’s Follonsby Colliery who had gained military honours.

Private John Clough, R.A.M.C. had been awarded the Military Medal. The newspaper report reads:“During the attack, September, 1916, Somme. Rendering first aid and bringing in wounded comrades from the front lines under continuous enemy shell fire.”

[He also was awarded a bar to his Military Medal].

John ('Jack') Clough was born in 1898 in the colliery village of Murton, Co.Durham. He played as a centre-half with Fatfield Albion, a Houghton League side. When the team's goalkeeper decided to take a Saturday afternoon off to attend a wedding, Jack was pushed into playing in goal as he was over 6 feet tall. And to use his own words he "played a blinder." The regular keeper did not get his job back, but Jack got an offer from Middlesbrough. He was working down the pit at Harraton, Durham, at the time. War service hindered his early football career. He was in France before he was 17 years of age, passing easily because of his height. And on the Somme in September 1916, he won the Military Medal and bar as a stretcher bearer in the Royal Army Medical Corps.

With Middlesbrough he made 12 First Division appearances in 1922. A price of £1,000 was put on his head in 1926 and Bradford (Park Avenue) secured his services paying about half that amount. At Park Avenue he was an ever-present during his first three seasons and did not miss a match until a throat infection brought his run to an end in December 1929, after appearing in 143 consecutive Division Three (North) and Second Division matches.

During Bradford's championship-winning season in 1927-8, Jack saved seven out of nine penalties awarded against his side, all saves having a bearing on the result of each game.He played his last game for Bradford at Manchester United in Division Two on the 2nd January, 1932, blood poisoning sending him to hospital. He was given a free transfer at the end of the season after making 222 league and cup appearances for the West Yorkshire club.

He later had short stays with Mansfield Town, Brentford and Rotherham United before returning as a trainer to Mansfield.

Source : Tim Clapham, Bradford (Park Avenue) Historian.

The 2nd photograph was taken at the United Methodist Church Hall, Sandyford Road, Newcastle.

Photos : Illustrated Chronicle August 1914

With Thanks to the Wellcome Library.

John Clough is remembered on W97.02

Field Ambulance Memories

If you know more about this person, please send the details to janet@newmp.org.uk