Regiment: 10th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment
Died: 24 April 1917
East Budleigh Memorial Cross, East Budleigh Memorial Tablet
Other Memorial: Doiran Military Cemetery [Google]
PDF Download: FARRANT Atwell James
The son of stonemason William Farrant and his wife Ann, Atwell was born in East Budleigh in 1881, and in the 1911 census is described as a mason’s labourer lodging with the Smith family in Tidwell Cottages.
Private Atwell James Farrant, 11563, served with the 10th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment, which was formed in Exeter in September 1914.
A year later it landed first at Boulogne, France, before moving on to Salonika, in Greece, which is now known as Thessalonika, in order to help nearby Sebia fight off Bulgarian attacks.
It saw action in a number of battles against Bulgarian forces, including the 1917 Battle of Doiran, which took place between 22 April and 8 May, with British infantry forces making their first major attack on 24 April.
The British assault failed, however, with 12,000 men killed, wounded or captured.
Doiran Military Cemetery is in the north of Greece close to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia frontier and near the south-east shore of Lake Doiran. The cemetery (originally known as Colonial Hill Cemetery No.2) was formed at the end of 1916 as a cemetery for the Doiran front. The graves are almost entirely those of officers and men of the 22nd and 26th Divisions and largely reflect the fighting of April and May 1917 and 18-19 September 1918. The cemetery contains 1,338 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, 449 of them unidentified. There are also one French and 45 Greek war graves. The Doiran Memorial, which stands near the cemetery, serves the dual purpose of Battle Memorial of the British Salonika Force, and place of commemoration for more than 2,000 Commonwealth servicemen who died in Macedonia and whose graves are not known.
Private Farrant is remembered with honour at the Doiran Military Cemetery, where he is buried.
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