Coleshill Remembers World War 1
As a free service to the World War 1 commemoration year, ST-IT Limited have created and are hosting a free database of Coleshill connected veterans.
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Entry for Private John Darcy
1st Battalion Border Regiment
Year of Birth
Date of Death
John Darcy was born in 1887 in Middlesbrough, Yorkshire. In 1899 John and his younger brother Thomas (born 1894) were sent to the St Paul’s Home for Boys in Coleshill, Warwickshire, by the Middlesbrough Board of Guardians. It is not clear what happened to their parents or younger siblings. John and Thomas were baptised in Coleshill on the 1st November 1899. At the age of 14 in 1901, John was a student and half-time carpenter at St Paul’s. In December the same year he moved to the St Vincent’s Home on Moseley Road, Birmingham, where he stayed for two years. After leaving St Vincent’s John returned to Middlesbrough where he worked as a labourer, living at 14 Durham Place. On the 23rd August 1904 he enlisted at Richmond with the 4th Battalion Yorkshire Regiment aged 17 years 5 months. His enlistment papers describe him as 5 foot 3 and 3/8 inch tall, with a fresh complexion, grey eyes and dark brown hair, service number 5993. He completed the maximum 49 days service as a Militiaman and officially joined the Yorkshire Regiment on 28th August 1905, service number 8170. Private Darcy gave his next of kin as younger brothers Patrick, living at 8 Durham Place, Middlesbrough, and Thomas, still living at St Paul’s Home in Coleshill, and a sister who lived in Canada. Private Darcy’s time with the Yorkshire Regiment included service in Rawalpindi in India. By 1911 Private Darcy had transferred to the 1st Border Regiment and was stationed at Sale Barracks in Rangoon, Burma. Upon the outbreak of war the Battalion were still in Burma, stationed at Maymyo. In December 1914 they embarked from Bombay, landing at Avonmouth, England on the 10th January 1915. From here they moved to Rugby and joined the 87th Brigade of the 29th Division. On the 17th March 1915 the Battalion was mobilised for war and sailed from Avonmouth via Egypt and Mudros, landing at Cape Helles, Gallipoli, on the 25th April 1915. During the fighting in the Gallipoli Campaign Private Darcy was wounded, and died from his wounds on the 28th August 1915. He is buried in Plot 5, Row F, Grave 3 of Hill 10 Cemetery, Turkey. Private Darcy was posthumously awarded the 1914-15 Star, British War and Allied Victory medals and is remembered on the War Memorial in St Teresa and the Sacred Heart, Coleshill.