James Clements


154185 Gunner James Clements served with Royal Field Artillery. During the war the port city of Beirut suffered a blockade by the Allies, intended to starve out the Turks. This, combined with a series of natural disasters, resulted in widespread famine, followed by plague, which killed more than a quarter of the population. The city fell on 8 October 1918 and James died on 23 November 1918, possibly of wounds, possibly of disease in the unhealthy city. He was buried in Beirut War Cemetery (ref. 282).

Born in 1890 in Wheatley, James was a son of Richard Clements, farm labourer and cattleman, and Mary Hayfield, both of them also born in the village, in 1864/5. In 1891 the family were living on Farm Close Lane, and by 1901 at Ivy Hill Cottages, Holton. He had attended Wheatley Elementary school and gone on to be a labourer with threshing machine in 1911, living as a single man on High Street. James married Kate Lee at Tring in Hertfordshire in 1915. See also reference to him in the Wheatley in a World at War chapter.

Royal Field Artillery
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