5854 Sergeant Irvine Wainman, MM.


11th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers. Awarded the M.M. in the London Gazette of 18 October 1917. Awarded a bar to his M.M. in the London Gazette of 27 June 1918. Wainman was a native of Burnley, Lancashire.

The Burnley Express reported: -

MILITARY MEDALIST KILLED

Many Habergham readers will regret to learn that Sergeant Irvine Wainman (5854) of the Lancashire Fusiliers died of wounds on March 25th in the Canadian Stationary Hospital. The intimation was received by wire by his parents on Saturday. They reside at 700, Padiham Road, Cheapside. In our issue of September 22nd last we announced that Sergeant Wainman had been awarded the Military Medal for bringing up a party which were attached to his battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers, through heavy gas and shell fire, and the carrying in of a wounded comrade who had had his foot blown off.

The brave young fellow who was 25 years of age, was a native of Cheapside, and from a child was connected with the Park Hill Wesleyan Sunday School, were he is on the roll of honour. His elementary education was received at Habergham Church Day School, and was continued at the Burnley Technical School. The deceased soldier is one of four sons who have served their country. Previous to enlistment on September 5th, 1914, he was a weaver at Walshaw Mill, Harle Syke, from which mill he is the seventh to fall in the present war. After training at Cosforth and other places, Sergeant Wainman was drafted to France in September 1915, and has participated in many engagements including Vimy Ridge, Arras, Ypres and the Somme. On one occasion he had a narrow escape from death. Whilst in a dug out along with eleven other comrades a shell burst and killed nine of them, Wainman being buried in the debris.

Wainman's award of the Military Medal would appear to be for the actions on the Westhoek Ridge in early August of 1917. The award of a bar to his Military Medal is for gallantry during the rear guard actions of 23/24 March 1918 on the Biefvillers - Sapignies Spur. It was during this action that he received his fatal wounds. For full details of these actions see pages 219 - 221 and pages 301 - 303 of The History of the Lancashire Fusilers by Major-General J. C. Latter.

"Soldiers Died in the Great War" shows that he died of wounds on the 25 March 1918. He was born and enlisted in Burnley, Lancashire.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission Register for Doullens Communal Cemetery Extension 1, records his burial in section V, row 8, grave 89 and gives the following additional information: - He was the son of William and Polly Wainman of Habergham, Nr. Burnley and was aged 25 at the time of his death.

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