Taylor, Edward
Taylor, Edward

Edward Taylor was born in the last quarter of 1911 in Lostock Hall. His father was James Taylor (b. 1877 in Bamber Bridge), a fitter in a tar boiler works. His mother was Margaret Hunter (b. 1872 in Leyland). Margaret already had a daughter (Elizabeth, b. 1894) when she and James were married at Farington St Paul’s in 1900. James and Margaret then had at least 7 children (though they lost two in infancy). The survivors were: May (b. 1900), Margaret (b. 1902), James Victor (b. 1903), then Edward, and finally Jean (b. 1913). In 1911, when Edward was born, the family lived at Princess Street, Lostock Hall. James died in 1933, and by 1939 his widow Margaret and four adult children (Amy, James, Edward and Jean) had moved to 102 Brownedge Road. Edward was working as a house painter and decorator.

Edward joined the Royal Corps of Signals. He was a signalman with service number 2359621. He was posted to India.

After the fall of Rangoon in March 1942, the probability that the Japanese would occupy the whole of Burma constituted a grave threat to India and Ceylon. The forces available for defence were dangerously weak. Apart from those deployed on the north-west frontier and on internal security, there were only seven divisions, and these lacked ancillary troops and equipment. The air force and airfields were inadequate and the fleet as a whole was in no position to dispute command of the Bay of Bengal. In March and April 1942, 100,000 tons of shipping were sunk in the bay. Internal disturbances in India presented an additional threat, and some of the worst troubles occurred in districts of Bihar. In May 1942 five further divisions reached India, followed in June by two more, and the air force strength was increased. Ranchibecame an important base, and the 70th Division, less one brigade in Ceylon, was posted there to meet any sea-borne attack on the Orissa coast, and to form the only reserve to support Assam or Bengal.

I don’t know the circumstances of Edward’s death, but he died in India on 20 April 1942, aged 33. Edward is buried at Ranchi Cemeterybut this was a ‘concentration’ cemetery to which graves were relocated at different stages of the War and after, so Edward died somewhere in Bihar or West Bengal.

Rank: Signalman

Service Number: 2359621

Unit/Regiment: Royal Corps of Signals

Date of death: 20/04/1942

Age: 33

Buried at: RANCHI   WAR CEMETERY, India

Grave Reference: 3. J. 7.

(There is also a grave stone for Edward in St Saviour’s graveyard, Bamber Bridge).

Taylor, Edward

Taylor, Edward