Biography – Lance Corporal Frederick Holdsworth

Biography – Frederick William Holdsworth
The Cheshire Regiment Died 20th April 1918. Age 34

Family situation

  • He was born in Crewe in 1883 and married Ethel Mary Howard from Crewe in 1908.
  • He came to live at the White Cottage, Betley.
  • He and Ethel had 2 daughters (1909 and 1914) – both baptized at St. Margaret’s church
  • He was 5ft 8qtr, with a sandy complexion.

Employment and Service

  • Frederick became a teacher at Betley School and was organist at St. Margaret’s Church.
  • He enlisted in Crewe 27th Nov 1915 at age 33 and joined the 11th Battalion Cheshire Regiment but transferred to 13th Battalion early in 1917.
  • He was promoted Lance Corporal in June 1917, and became an office clerk in July.
  • He had 2 weeks leave in February 1918, at home in Betley, but was admitted to Newcastle-under-Lyme hospital with ‘contact measles’.
  • By 18th March he was back with his regiment but was reported missing a month later.


  • His body was never found, but he is commemorated at Tyne Cot Memorial, Flanders, BelgiumShow on map. PANEL 61-63. NE boundary
  • This memorial carries the names of 35,000 officers and men whose graves are unknown and 12,000 men buried in graves. It is the largest Commonwealth War Graves cemetery in the world and was visited by King George V in 1922


2nd Lt Albert Riley wrote to his parents in Alsagers Bank in Nov. 1917 –

”I came across a piano player in my search for musicians, his name was Holdsworth. He’s a L/Cpl in my company and the coy clerk. He was a schoolmaster at Betley and used to teach cousin Maggie’s children on the piano. He knows quite a lot of people at Betley and round about. He is sandy in complexion and quite a decent chap. have you ever met him ? Must close now. love to all at home. Your affectionate son Albert”

Common Wealth War Graves Commission Certificate