Author Topic: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??  (Read 9500 times)

alain dubois

  • Guest
Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« on: May 01, 2014, 10:05:15 AM »
Hello,
     As I said in my brief presentation, I live in Valenciennes, liberated by British troops, mainly Canadian, November 2, 1918 .
Each November 11 since nearly 20 years, ceremonies of remembrance to various monuments, including the British St Roch Cemetery, not far from my home, there is a detachment of Manchester Cadets.

There is little time, talking about the Centennial, a local newspaper wrote: "About ceremonies, the focus will be on fraternal relationship Between Valenciennes and Manchester (UK) , whose regiment liberated the city in 1918 among Canadian division. " . There was a friendship with Manchester, it was known, even though the city is twinned with Chatham. But to this day I have no information on the presence of "non-Canadian " troops during the fighting for the liberation of the city.
 
Certainly not the whole regiment, but perhaps a (part of a) battalion, or more likely, if the information is correct, an integrated unit to Canadian Expeditionary Force .
Having found nothing about that, I thought you could help me.
There are graves in the St Roch communal cemetery, but the dates of death correspond to previous fights, and sometimes POW deaths.
If I want find deads of the Regiment at those dates, they are in other cemeteries, East and South-East, where I though find British troops, even if some units like Gordon Higlanders were very near (and some of them buried in our cemetery).

Thank you in advance,
Regards
Alain

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,497
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2014, 03:19:31 PM »
Welcome to the Forum,

 Your query regarding the connection with Manchester (your local newspaper refers) is intriguing.  As regards a connection with your city and the Manchester Regiment, I have turned to the "Official History" Volume V. to see if the Manchesters were mentioned in that volume as being in action near Valenciennes in early November 1918.   Sadly, from this source it does not appear to have been the case.  However, there are very knowledgeable members of this Forum who may be better able to answer your query than I have been able to do.

In the attack by the Canadians on the 1st-3rd November 1918, the "Official History" indicates that the British 49th Division were on the Canadian's right flank and during operations, some of their units moved into the Canadian's fighting area and attacked the Steel Works, south east of Valenciennes at Marly.  However, the 49th Division was composed of Yorkshire Regiments.

Lastly, can you give us a little more information about the "Manchester Cadets", please, and the source of the newspaper's information would be very helpful, too?

On a personal note.  I visited your city about 15 years ago and seem to remember that there was a great act of bravery and ingenuity by the Canadians in capturing the fortress in your city.

 Best Regards, PhilipG.

alain dubois

  • Guest
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2014, 04:18:16 PM »
PhilipG thank you for this first answer.
 I asked recently the source of  the newspaper , I'm waiting ....
The last occurence was probably quoting the local edition of " la Voix du Nord " of November 11th , last years  :
2013 : http://www.lavoixdunord.fr/region/valenciennes-soixante-cadets-trois-pilotes-de-chasse-ia27b36956n1684717
2012 : http://www.lavoixdunord.fr/region/les-cadets-de-manchester-et-leurs-cornemuses-en-vedette-des-jna27b0n817685

and you'll find here photographs I made some years ago.

I have a map, given by a great nephew of a Gordon Highlander killed and buried first at Maing on the east flank of "Mount Houy" where I conducted him.


Mount Houy (81m !) was the theater of the last large action of artillery conducted by General A.L. McNaughton. On november 2, the last Canadian V.C. of WWI was won by Sgt Hugh Cairns (V.C., D.C.M.) of whom my father told us. The niece of the Sgt. was with us in 2009 for a pilgrimage of a week. Sgt Cairns (who has a street at his name) was deadly wounded precisely in the attack of the Marly steel work .

Here is the "pipe" of the 4 Canadian divisions :


Regards
Alain

Offline Tim Bell

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,125
    • Grandad's Journey
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2014, 04:29:47 PM »
Hi Alain,

Looking at this article on Google Translate explains a little more perhaps http://www.lavoixdunord.fr/region/les-cadets-de-manchester-et-leurs-cornemuses-en-vedette-des-jna27b0n817685  
Between cadets and Bernard Potaux, among other patriotic ceremonies Assistant is a long history of friendship. The elected Valenciennes married a teacher who, in the late 1980s, went to England for five years training at the University of Canterbury. The young woman lived in Partington at Foxtown. Jim Partington was for twenty-five years, the cook of the Kings Regiment of Manchester, the very man who freed Valenciennes, with Canadians during the Great War. During a stay in Manchester, Bernard Potaux therefore acquainted with Colonel Vails, head of the regiment. The current is passed. In 1992, Colonel initiated travel veterans in five years, to 11 November.

Is something lost in translation?
Tim


Following one Platoon and everything around them....
http://17thmanchesters.wordpress.com/about/

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,497
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2014, 06:52:41 PM »
Tim,

I am getting the drift, I think!
Do you think that Jim Partington served with the Canadian Army in their liberation of Valenciennes and subsequently served with the King's which through regimental amalgamations had a past connection with the Manchesters.   Hence the confusion that the Manchesters were in the Valenciennes attacks?   Quite a mystery so far.  I think that "Foxtown" could be Folkestone.    PhilipG.


alain dubois

  • Guest
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2014, 07:02:22 PM »
Hi Tim
       All right for the friendship between the towns, and finally, no matter why. But "Jim Partington was for twenty-five years, the cook of the Kings Regiment of Manchester, the very man who freed Valenciennes, with Canadians during the Great War." Even if Jim was still alive in 1980s,  he was not THE man who freed Valenciennes (too many for one man, even cook  ;) )  you must read "..... the Kings Regiment of Manchester, the same one [the regiment] who freed Valenciennes, with the Canadians ...." . For the current, "They had good chemistry", but I suppose it was understandable. And yes, Mr Potaux was City Councillor until the last municipal election.
 
I have a little question, the regiment is Kings Regiment only since 1958? true?
 Regards
Alain
PhilipG  : Foxtown  : well done !! It is for this reason that I seek the authentic sources, especially those of a newspaper !

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,497
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2014, 07:27:00 PM »
Alain.

1958 the King's (Liverpool) Regt. amalgamated with the Manchester Regt.to become King's (Manchester and Liverpool) Regt. in 1968 becoming the King's Regt.  PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,497
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2014, 03:11:05 PM »
Alain,

As regards "Manchester Cadets" I think this will refer to what over here we sometimes call the "Army Cadets".     The Army Cadet Force is a very worthwhile youth organisation sponsored by the British Army.  PhilipG.

Offline george.theshed197

  • sadly no longer with us
  • *
  • Posts: 1,162
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2014, 05:30:52 PM »
Alain,
We might as well bring the history currently up to date-

The Regiments formation was announced on the 16 December 2004 by Geoff Hoion & Gen Mike Jackson as part of the restructuring of the infantry, when it was initially to be known as The King's, Lancashire & Border Regiment. The Regimen t was given its new name in November 2005. Initially formed of three regular battalions, it was eventually reduced to two regular battalions plus a Territorial Battalion. The regiment was formed through the merger of three single Regiments
        King's Own Royal Border Regiment
        The Kings Regiment
        The Queens Lancashire Regiment. ( Wikepedia)

Cheers,
George.

Offline Robert Bonner

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,389
Re: Manchester Regiment : Valenciennes 1918 ??
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2014, 07:18:59 PM »
I'm afraid that this is a case of history getting rather twisted. To my knowledge there is no WWI connection between the Regiment and Valenciennes.

Jim Partington was a member of the Ashton-under-Lyne branch of the Regimental Association. (He did not free Valenciennes)  The fiancee of Bernard Potaux stayed with the Partingtons when she was at university in England. From this connection came a visit to Valenciennes by the Ashton Old Comrades together with some of the Ashton Army Cadets. A group of people from Valenciennes then visited Ashton-under-Lyne. All this about twenty years ago.

From this initial exchange developed an annual event. Gradually the Old Comrades, through dwindling numbers, handed over the organisation to the Cadets and I understand this carries on to the present day although rather than go to private homes  the visit in England is held at the annual Army Cadet Camp.
Robert