Church and Community

We will remember them – Churches will hold special services to honour those killed in the Battle of the Somme

By Peter Trollope at

Churches throughout the area are today remembering those who died or were injured at the Battle of the Somme, 100 years ago.

Special services will be held in Sale, Sale Moor and Ashton on Mersey.

St Paul’s Parish Church on Springfield Road, Sale, will be remembering twelve men from the parish at Morning Service at 10 am., who lost their lives and who are commemorated on the church war memorial.

And St Anne’s Church, Church Road, Sale Moor will honour the local men who died in the Great War.

Brothers who made the ultimate sacrifice

Brothers who made the ultimate sacrifice

The name of Mottershead appears twice on the war memorial as one family’s supreme sacrifice on the Western Front is remembered.

Four brothers joined up from the same family in Sale Moor. The family home was Northenden Road,  But only two brothers survived the war – George Mottershead,  of the South Lanchashire Regiment.was badly wounded in the Battle of  the Somme. He was shot in the neck, injuring his spine and initially paralysed and confined to a wheelchair for three years, and then he defied to doctors to learn to walk again.

George Mottershead from Sale Moor lost two brothers in the Great War

George Mottershead from Sale Moor lost two brothers in the Great War

George later went on the open Chester Zoo. His exploits were shown  in the BBC1 series – Our Zoo.  His brother Charles served with the Royal Flying Corps School Training. Their two brothers Albert and Stanley – of the Manchester Regiment,  were both killed in 1916.

Lance Corporal Albert Mottershead died in October and is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial

Private Stanley Mottershead was killed in December and is buried at  Douchy-les-Ayette  war cemetery.

Both are also commemorated on the war memorial at St Anne’s Church, Sale Moor and the  Sale War  memorial

The first day of the Battle of the Somme was the worst day in the history of the British army with casualties numbering 57,470, dead or injured.

The battle, lasted from 1st July to 18th November 1916 –  481,842 British, 250,000 French and 236,194 German soldiers lost their lives.

The death toll continued to mount over the next five months of the battle, with 600 more men from our borough losing their lives.

Altrincham lost the highest number of men, 210. Stretford lost 181, Sale 126, Urmston 78 and Partington five men.