10199 L/Cpl Harry Watson.

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2nd Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment.

Awarded the D.C.M. in the London Gazette of 30 June 1915.

Watson was a native of Burnley, Lancashire.

The Burnley News of 7 July 1915 reported, D.C.M. HERO. How A Burnley Soldier Gained The Award. For "doing his bit" in the firing line, Lance-Corporal Harry Watson, (whose parents reside at 23, Oxford Road, Burnley,) of the 2nd East Lancashire Regiment, has been awarded the D.C.M. and he recently returned home after five months in hospital at Bristol - a discharged soldier - but idolised by the comrades he left behind, and his soldier pals in Burnley who can often be seen wheeling him about in his bath-chair. Since he arrived in Burnley, Lance-Corporal Watson has had many callers at his home. He told the story of the deed, which won him the coverted medal to our representative the other day. "Was in the reserve trench on January 5th when a sergeant of the Royal Engineers ventured forth to cut the German parapet wire. He was severely wounded, and on hearing his cries for help I went out under a terrific fire, reaching the spot where the sergeant had fallen. Then it was my turn to be struck. A bullet (afterwards found to be a dum-dum) fired by a German sniper, entering my head. I lay twelve hours in the open before being rescued." Twenty-three years of age, Lance-Corporal Watson joined the colours six years ago. His brother in the same regiment, returned home a little while ago, wounded, but he is again in the trenches.

The citation for his D.C.M. published in the London Gazette reads, "For gallantry and devotion to duty at Neuve Chapelle in going out and rescuing a wounded man who was entangled in the barbed wire in front of our trenches."


Watson (centre) pictured with 'Young Kitchener' and an unknown sergeant of the Royal Artillery.

Harry Watson died at Blackpool, Lancashire on the 14 October 1970 aged 78. Although born in Burnley, Harry moved to Blackpool following World War 1 where he worked for the Inland Revenue until his retirement.