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Lawson, A., 2nd Lt., 1916
Photo: JAMES PASBY NER Magazine 1917 page 2

NER Magazine 1917 page 2

Photo: James Hoy Archive Shields Gazette .

Shields Gazette Friday 29th September 1916

On the Thiepval Memorial is the name of Second Lieutenant Alfred Lawson, serving with the 9th Battalion Durham Light Infantry who died 16/09/1916.

Alfred Lawson, was the son of Benjamin Dain Lawson and Isabella Lawson, of 45, Westoe Parade, South Shields. He was also a nephew of Alderman J. R. Lawson.

He was a pupil at Westoe Secondary School.

He had enlisted as a private in September 1914, and served in the Hussars and then was granted his commission in November 1915, then transferred to the D.L.I.

He was employed with the NER for 8 years before joining the colours, as a clerk in the Divisional Goods Manager's office in Newcastle, and since 1910 in the District Engineer's office at New Bridge Street.

In a letter from his Commanding Officer it is stated that Lieutenant Lawson was killed "whilst gallantly leading his men in an assault on the enemy position," and it is added that the continuous excellent work done by him had been of incalculable value to the nation and that he was one of the most excellent of officers and would have attained the rank of Captain. He was aged 24.

His parents had received an additional letter from his friend and brother officer, 2nd Lieutenant Charles D. Bowdery showing how splendidly the deceased officer played his part in the great struggle that is going on in France:- "Dear Mr Lawson, It is with the deepest regret that I tell that I have to inform you that Alf was killed whilst gallantly leading his men into action on Saturday, the 16th Inst. For a long time past I have been a friend of Alf's, and I was only a few yards away when he fell, hit in the head. I am sure he had no pain whatever, and died like a hero in face of the accursed enemy. He died as he lived, a perfect gentleman and a gallant soldier, and although perhaps useless, it may some consolation for you to know that."

Source: NER Railway Magazine 1917 page 2

Source: Shields Gazette Friday 29th September 1919

He is remembered at South Shields on S86.027 in S86.086 page 9, S86.109, S86.142 and the York Railway Memorial

South Shields Grammar School
The CWGC entry for 2nd Lieutenant Lawson

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