Private James Milroy
1st Battalion, Royal Scots Fusiliers
Died 14 July 1916
James Milroy was born on 14th May 1895 at Station Cottage, Wigtown, the son of James Milroy, the Stationmaster, and Annie Milroy, nee Gordon. By 1901 James Milroy Snr had left the railway and was running a grocer’s shop in Kirkinner. James junior also helped in the family shop but later became a postman in Newton Stewart. On 10 December 1915 James enlisted at Wigtown with the 1st Battalion, Royal Scots Fusiliers.
After a period of training Private 20804 James Milroy went to France, arriving there on 16/5/1916. In the first two weeks of July that year the 1st Battalion was in action in the Battle of Albert, the first two weeks of the allied offensive on the Somme. The second phase of the Battle of the Somme was at Bazentin Ridge where, on 14 July, the allied infantry was, initially, successful. However it was there that James was killed in action. His body was not found and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, the Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, which bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave. Over 90% of those commemorated died between July and November 1916.
James is also commemorated on Kirkinner War Memorial. His outstanding pay was shared between his father, who received £3 9s 6d, and his brother, Hugh, who received 9s 11d. After the war a gratuity of £3 was paid to his father who, by then, was living in Canada.