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2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester



   The 2nd Western General Hospital opened in 1914 at the Central High School for Boys in Whitworth Street Manchester providing 520 beds. The hospital soon expanded and took over at least another 20 buildings, including a number of schools across Manchester and Stockport.

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Those known to have worked or been treated at

2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester

during the Great War 1914-1918.

All names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List


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May 2017

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There are:1 articles tagged 2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester available in our Library

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227848

Cpl. Joseph Lamb 22nd Btn. B Coy. 8Plt. Manchester Regiment

Joseph Lamb was a stoker at Stuart St power station immediately prior to WW1 though he had previously worked in a cotton mill.

On the 1st of September 1914 he attested with the 12th Btn. Kings Royal Rifle Corps as a private No 531, but this was short lived as he was discharged 1 month later under Kings Regulation 392, 111 (unlikely to become an efficient soldier).

Evidently, not put off by this hitch, he then joined the 22nd Manchester Regiment, "B" Company, VII Platoon as a Private on the th of January 1915. His initial training took place at Stretford Rd Barracks, Hulme, Manchester. During this period the 22nd Manchester's had no billets, uniforms or weaponry and in fact returned home at the end of each day's training. The Battalion then moved to Morecambe followed by Grantham and then Larkhill Camp, Salisbury Plain.

They were then sent to France via Folkestone to Boulogne. Due to appalling weather they were billeted overnight until the sea calmed down though the sailing could not be described as calm. The battn then continued advanced training before tasting their first "active service" in trenches facing Thiepval (at that point a heavily defended German stronghold) under the watchful eye of the 1st Bttn Hampshire Regt.

The 22nds remained in France and were billeted at Fricourt the night before the opening of The Battle of the Somme. On the opening of the battle they held trenches midway between Fricourt and Mametz and went over the top in an attempt to capture/liberate the German held village of Mametz. The objective was achieved and proved to be one of the few successes of the day which saw 60,000 allied casualties.

The 22nds lost officers killed May, Bland, Mellor, Gomersall, Peak, Brunt, Swan, Nansen, Price and Gill. Officers Wounded: Lloyd, Worthington Prince, Cotton, Wood, >Workhouse and Riley wounded. 120 other ranks were killed and 241 others were wounded or missing.

In late September Joseph Lamb was listed as wounded on The Times daily casualty lists though I can find no detail of the nature of the wound. They remained in the Somme region and took part in the Battle of Bullecourt in May 1917. This battle proved to be another fiasco largely due to the failure of British tanks to reach, let alone disrupt the enemy front line.

My other grandfather was captured during this battle.

The Battalion moved to Belgium in September 1917 to take part in the 3rd battle of Ypres (Paschaendale). On the 2nd of October 1917 Joe Lamb was in dugouts in a railway embankment west of Zillebeke Lake. On the night of the 3rd the Battlion marched up to Polygon Wood in preparation for the Battle of Broodseinde Ridge. The Manchester's attacked Broodseinde Ridge early on the 4th and he was hit by a shell and lay injured in a shell hole. A German soldier was in the same shell hole and managed to dress Joe's badly wounded leg. Upon the arrival of other British troops Joe Lamb managed to talk them out of shooting the German soldier who was subsequently taken as a POW.

Joe Lamb was evacuated to Britain and spent some time at Colchester Military Hospital though by this time he had lost a leg 2 inches above the knee. He received further treatment at the 2nd Western Military Hospital on Whitworth St, Manchester. It was here on 1st of July 1918 that his artificial leg was "successfully fitted".

He later returned to work for the Electricity Dept as a storeman. He was never a well man after the war and died aged 47 in 1943. His brother in law (another Manchester Pal) died in the same hospital on the same day with neither widow (sisters) realising the other was there. During his recuperation Joe took offence to a grocery boy's taunts aimed at the injured soldiers. When the boy entered the hospital Joe, regardless of his missing leg stole and hid the boys delivery bike. Try explaining that to your boss!





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There are:1 items tagged 2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester available in our Library
  These include information on officers service records, regimental histories, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.




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