Omitted from publication on 18th Apr 2016.
Mark Henry Osborne was born on 18th Jun 1889 at Harlestone, Northamptonshire and baptised there on 1st September the same year. He was the fourth child of Mark, a farm labourer and his wife Hannah (nee Goldby). They were married in Harlestone on 12th August 1883 and in 1891, when Mark Henry was a year old, the family were living with Hannah’s parents John and Eliza.
By 1901 they were no longer living with the Goldbys, but there were eight children in the household, including 10 month old Ada, the daughter of Mark Henry’s older sister Eliza, who was not listed with the family. Mark Henry was eleven years old and no occupation was given, his father and older brother John were both farm labourers.
By 1911 Henry, as he was now known, perhaps to distinguish him from his father, was 21 and an estate labourer. His parents had produced eleven children, ten of whom had survived. Only five were still living with the family, plus Ada and another granddaughter, Laura.
By the time the war started Henry Mark was employed by the London & North Western Railway in the Carriage Works in Rugby. He enlisted in Northampton on 1st September 1914, in the 1st Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment, private no. 13045, and after training arrived in France on 27th January 1915.
He would have experienced several battles during 1915 with the Northamptonshire Regiment taking heavy casualties in the attacks at Aubers Ridge and Loos. It was a cold winter and not a lot was happening in March/April 1916. The regiment was near Loos and took part in patrols and repair of trenches, when returned to billets, concerts were mentioned in the war diary. There was regular shelling by the enemy.
It is not known when and how Mark Henry Osborne was wounded, but he died on 8th April 1916 at Bethune. For much of the First World War, Bethune was comparatively free from bombardment and remained an important railway and hospital centre, as well as a corps and divisional headquarters. The 33rd Casualty Clearing Station was in the town until December 1917.
He was buried in the Bethune Town Cemetery. No inscription was added to the stone by his family, whose address is given as 82 New Cottages, Harlestone.
Mark Henry was awarded the Victory and British Medals and the 15 star.
As well as the Rugby Memorial Gates, he is remembered on the Harlestone War Memorial – as Harry Osborne, next to Criss Manning who died in 1914 and also a railway man in Rugby. They are both listed in the L&NM Railway Roll of Honour. M H Osborne was a carriage cleaner.
RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM