Philip, I am not aware of the precise circumstances of your death, nor what caused it, although so many of our comrades must have been blown to smithereens in the German artillery defensive barrage. As a former soldier in the 1st and the 7th Warwicks and the 1st Lincolns myself, doing my National Service in peacetime in 1950-51, although sad to read about your death, I am pleased to be given this opportunity to salute you as a brave young officer who lost his life in the Battle of the Somme in the service of his country. We read that in nearly all the big battles the Gordon tartan was well to the fore, and that your bravery was never surpassed. The town of Mametz was carried by the 7th Division in the opening attack on the 1st of July 1916, in which many of your comrades fell, but the battle continued for many weeks afterwards.  I can but quote the memorial hymn again, “All you had hoped for, all you had you gave to save mankind – yourself you scorned to save.”  The remains of most of your comrades in the Gordon Highlanders who fell at these times were not recovered from the field of battle and they are therefore commemorated on the Memorial at Thiepval.   However, some of you were identified and so received a proper military funeral in nearby graveyards, with a Guard of Honour who fired the customary salute. I trust that the piper played a traditional lament such as  “Flowers of the Forest” when you were laid to rest.  I also trust that you were commemorated on your home town war memorial. But you are also remembered every year at the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance, when the parade is at the attention while the Queen’s Colour and the National Standard are dipped in salute as the Last Post is sounded. I offer my sympathy to your mother and other relatives and friends who mourned your sacrifice.  Rest in Peace.  Harry.

Henry Harrison