Littleborough’s History


The Final 5 Anniversaries of 130 service personnel from LITTLEBOROUGH, WARDLE & SMALLBRIDGE

Private Daniel Burns (Moran)

Daniel was born on 18th December 1914, the son of Elizabeth Burns and lived at 2 Cloughfield Cottages. 28 year old Private Burns (Moran) 3861976, 13th Bn, The Kings Regiment (Liverpool), a Chindit, died in Rangoon Jail on 4th November 1943 having been captured on 5th April 1943. Daniel is buried In Rangoon War Cemetery, Myanmar, Sp. Mem. Joint grave 9 A 4 and is remembered on Littleborough Cenotaph.

Officer Cadet Edward Nash Reynolds

Edward Nash was born early in 1924, the son of Edward and Mary Reynolds. He was Captain of Bury Grammar School between 1940-42 and an Exhibitioner of Emmanuel College, Cambridge. In 1939, his parents lived at 2 Higher Chelburn with his younger sister Joan. His father was a Civil Servant with the Ministry of Labour.  Five other residents were recorded in the property. Prior to enlisting he was a 2nd Lieutenant in the Summit detachment of the Home Guard and a members of the choir of St James Church in Calderbrook. 19 year old Officer Cadet Reynolds 14303024, Royal Armoured Corps was fatally injured on 17th November 1943 fatally injured in a road accident. He is buried in Cheadle Cemetery, Staffordshire, Grave A M 2 and is remembered on Littleborough Cenotaph and Clegg’s Mills War Memorial in Shore.

Flight Sergeant George William Jubb

George William was born in Tadcaster on 6th July 1921, the son of Ernest and Madge Jubb, of Whitehead Rd, Primrose Hill, Huddersfield. George married Irene Wakefield of 1 Spring Mill Walk, Smallbridge at Littleborough on 11th August 1943. Unfortunately, 22 year old Flight Sergeant Jubb 1040913, 297 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve died on 21st December 1943 in a Parachute Training Accident. At the time of his death Irene was a member of the WAAF and her home was 1 Spring Mill Walk, Smallbridge.  George is buried in Huddersfield (Almondbury) Cemetery, Sec. L. Grave 206 but is not remembered on any known local war memorial. Irene  remarried in 1951 to Gerald Parker and was living on Holt Street

Driver James Ronald Earnshaw

James Ronald was born in Rochdale on 22nd October 1912, the son of John Thomas Earnshaw and stepson of Eleanor Earnshaw, of Darwen, Lancashire. Prior to enlisting he had worked in the Fish Department of the Littleborough Co-operative Society and lived at No 3 Wardle Road, Smallbridge. 38 year old Driver Earnshaw T/780327,  Royal Army Service Corps, died in the 94th General Hospital in  Algeria on 9th September 1943.  Driver Earnshaw was re-buried on 8th August 1944 from Y61 Algiiers into Dely Ibrahim War Cemetery, Grave No 4 J 7. He is remembered on Littleborough Cenotaph and the Holy Trinity War Memorial.

Frank Kershaw

Frank was born in Dearnley in late spring 1910, son of George Albert and Rachel Kershaw who lived at 4 Hursted Green in 1911, 19 Cote Lane in 1939 and at 2a Wagg Fold during September 1943. Frank married Florence Petterson in St Barnabas Church in Shore late in 1935 and they had 2 children Rachel b 1936 and Kathleen b 1937. In 1939 she was living at 285 Halifax Road. Prior to enlisting just after the war commenced he was employed by the LMS Railway Co but was soon to be declared as unfit for war service. He then worked as a vanman for Messrs Clifton Bakery for two years but his health failed and was obliged to give up work. He died on 12th March 1943. The Rochdale Observer of 20th March 1943 carried thanks from his widow, Florence and his parents to all friends and neighbours for their kind expressions of sympathy and floral  tributes sent to them in their bereavement. Also the Doctors and nurses at Birch Hill for their kind attention. Franks was buried in St Barnabas burial ground, in Littleborough. Frank is not recorded on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission register but is remembered on Littleborough Cenotaph.


The Final 4 Anniversaries of the 92 servicemen from



Cook John Brogden Proctor

John was born in Great Harwood on 29th August 1913, the son of William and Alice Proctor. He married 27 year old Mary Gladys Thornton in Darwen Register Office earlier in 1939. When the register was later produced that year, the couple lived at 31 James Street, Whitehaven where john worked as a Confectioner – Cake Maker. 30 year old rating, Cook Proctor D/MX 106400, HM LST 13, Royal Navy, died in the Southern General hospital in Glasgow on 11th November 1943 from injuries sustained in a street accident (Fractured pelvis, hyperstatic pneumonia and heart failure). John is buried in Great Harwood Cemetery, Section H, Grave No 2005 and is remembered on St Annes War Memorial

Staff Sergeant William Jackson

William was born in Rochdale on 20th April 1912, the son of Arthur and Elizabeth Ann Jackson and in 1939 they were living at 42 Bingley Road, Rochdale. William was a Brewery Clerk. Also present was his younger sister, Barbara, a Hard Waste Weaver. Prior to enlisting in October 1939, he was a Brewery Clerk at the Rochdale and Manor brewery on Molesworth Street, Rochdale and attended St Peters Church in Newbold. He later married Olga Dawson in the same church on 4th November 1939. He was captured during the fall of Singapore and his wife had last heard of him in June 1944 albeit the 2 postcards were some 8 months old. 31 year old Staff Sergeant Jackson 7611320, Royal Army Ordnance Corps, died on 14th November 1943 from malnutrition whilst a POW and is buried in Chungkai War Cemetery, Thailand, Grave No 6 E 4 and is remembered on St Annes War Memorial. His poor wife only heard of his death in summer 1945 as reported in the Rochdale Observer of 28th July 1945.

Pilot Officer Navigator Edward Thompson Hargreaves

Edward was born in Rochdale on 26th April 1916, the son of Leonard and Hilda Hargreaves of 26 Park Road Poulton -le - Fylde. Prior to joining the RAF in June 1941 he was employed as a clerk by Mr Haugh, Estate Agent in Manchester and lived with his Aunt Mrs Whitehead 194 Huddersfield Rd Newhey. He was a member of Newhey Methodist Church and Sunday School, and was Church Treasury and society steward, a member of the Church Choir and also Sunday School Organist. He was a member of the Tennis section of the Milnrow Cricket club, a member of Newhey Liberal Club and Secretary of the Newhey Liberal Association. 27 year old Pilot Officer Navigator Hargreaves 155583, 619 Sqdn. Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, was killed in action on 3rd December 1943 when his Lancaster III EE 170 PG-N Hit by was hit by flak north of Magdaberg and exploded whilst heading to attack Leipzig. Edward is buried in BERLIN 1939 - 1945 WAR CEMETERY, Grave No 9 L 22 and is remembered on St James War Memorial. Although he was posted as missing in 1943 it wasn’t until a year later that his parents and fiancée (Miss G Coleman of 77 Shaw Road were advised of his death as Reported in the Rochdale Observer 25th November 1944.

Sergeant Roy Commer Rigg

Roy was born in Rochdale on 19th December 1920, the son of Gordon and Emily Rigg. The 1939 Register shows the family living at 9 Turf Hill Road, Rochdale with Roy being a Motor Driver (Heavy Work) as was his father. Prior to joining the RAF in September 1941 he was a Signalman-Lampman at Royton Junction station. As a boy he had attended Lower Place Council School and played in the Sunday School Football League. His brother Geoffrey was in the Merchant Navy and his sister Veronica was in the Women’s Land Army.  Sergeant Rigg was engaged to a young lady from Aberdare serving with WAAF and they were due to be married in December. Unfortunately 22 year old Sergeant Rigg 1148459, 115 Sqdn Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve was killed in action on 4th December 1943 when his Lancaster II D9765 KO was shot down during operation Leipzig. Sergeant Rigg is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 163 and on St Annes War Memorial.