Private Andrew Briggs
6th Battalion, Cameron Highlanders
Died 11 April 1917
Private S/40523 Andrew Briggs was the son of farmer Andrew Briggs and his wife Jeannie Skilling. He was born on 2 September 1895 at West Kirkland. In 1901 the family were living at Glenturk Moorhead and in 1911 at Bladnoch. Before the war Andrew moved to Sheffield where he lived with his uncle John and his wife Sarah. He enlisted on 4 January 1916, initially with the Scottish Horse. Shortly after that he  joined the Lovat Scouts before ending up in the 6th battalion, Cameron Highlanders. The Lovat Scouts were a British Army unit first formed during the Boer War as a Scottish Highland yeomanry regiment and is the first known military unit to wear a ghillie suit. In 1916, these scouts formally became the British Army’s first sniper unit, then known as sharpshooters.
After 9 months of active service Private Briggs was killed in action on 11 April 1917, probably in the Battle of the Scarpe 9 – 14 April. This was the first phase of the Battle of Arras and was initially a success for the British forces. Andrew Briggs was reported missing in action in the Galloway Gazette on 19 May:
Mr & Mrs Briggs, Bladnoch, have received official information that their son, Private Andrew Briggs, who joined the Lovat scouts and was transferred to the Cameron
Highlanders, has been posted as missing since April 11. He enlisted on 4th January 1916 and has been 9 months in active service. He is 21 years of age.
It wasn’t until July of that year that Mr & Mrs Briggs received confirmation of his death, at the age of 21. Andrew Briggs is commemorated on the Arras Memorial which commemorates almost 35,000 servicemen from the United Kingdom, South Africa and New Zealand who died in the Arras sector between the spring of 1916 and 7 August 1918, the eve of the Advance to Victory, and have no known grave.