Donald Goulding Evans

Information about birth

Date of birth:
Place of birth:
Llandudno, Caernarfonshire, Wales, United Kingdom

General information

House Painter/ Paperhanger

Army information

England, United Kingdom
British Expeditionary Force
Service number:
Enlistment date:
Enlistment place:
Bangor, Caernarfonshire, Wales, United Kingdom
 —  Northumberland Fusiliers, 1/5th Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
Place of death:
Dozinghem Casualty Clearing Station, Westvleteren, Belgium
Cause of death:
Died of wounds (D.O.W.)


Dozinghem Military Cemetery
Plot: X
Row: B
Grave: 21

Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 3

#1 Place of birth
#2 Enlistment place
#3 Place of death (approximate)

My story

Private Donald Goulding Evans served in the Northumberland Fusiliers 1st/5th Battalion, part of the 149th Brigade, of the 50th ( Northumbrian) Division.
The Battalion moved from Northern France to the vicinity of Proven near Poperinge, Flanders on the 20th of October 1917. The 1st/5th Northumberland Fusiliers were to participate in the Second Battle of Passchendaele (26 October – 10 November 1917), the final stage of the Third Battle of Ypres.
The 50th ( Northumbrian) Division attacked in the direction of the hamlet of Schaapbalie, due South of Poelcapelle, with one brigade at zero hour, 5.40 a.m. The attack of the 149th Brigade was carried by the 1st/4th the 1st/5th and the 1st/7th Northumberland Fusiliers. The 1st/6th Battalion was to be in support.
The 1st/5th Northumberland Fusiliers moved forward at zero hour, behind the barrage. The barrage proved to be quite useless, as the artillery fired mostly shrapnel shells, which had no effect on the line of German concrete bunkers. The line of bunkers was undamaged by the allied barrage and the German machine-guns started enfilading the advancing troops. On top of the relentless machine-gun fire the men were hindered by the difficult terrain. Large areas of the battlefield had been inundated, because the banks of the irrigation streams had been shot apart, due to the constant shelling.
Three minutes after Zero hour the German artillery put down a barrage and “A” Company was heavily shelled at position V.7.a.5.8. Notwithstanding the hard going the Battalion succeeded in capturing their first objective. “B” Company managed to reach Hill 23 but were soon fired upon by German machine-guns in Houthuls Forrest. When they reached the road at V.1.c.5.8. they were held up by barbed wire between the trees. When the first and second waves attempted to cut the wire, they were enfiladed by German machine-guns, firing from V.1.b.9.0. The two waves were practically wiped out by the very heavy machine-gun fire, and the following waves were unable to advance. Meanwhile “C” Company’s advance had also been checked by machine-guns in the concrete huts at V.1.d.70.65. “D” Company had reached their first objective, but when they tried to renew their advance they came under heavy fire, slowing down the attack. Any further advance had become impossible. All Companies had suffered severe casualties and weren’t able to reface the unforgiving machine-gun fire.
A platoon of the 1st/6th Battalion was ordered to take the line between Aden House and Turenne crossing together with “A” Company, which had lost to much men to re-establish the line. The remains of “C” Company also withdrew to Turenne Crossing and got in touch with “A” Company. Meanwhile “B” Company also fell back to their original jump-off line.
The battered 1st/5th Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers was relieved from the line at 11 p.m. by the 4th Battalion Yorkshire Regiment. They marched back to their bivouacs near Boesinghe, but the Battalion’s ordeal wasn’t over yet. Their camp was shelled by Howitzers at 10.30 a.m. on the 27th of October 1917, causing many casualties.
Private Donald Goulding Evans was either wounded during the Second Battle of Passchendaele on the 26th of October 1917 or sustained wounds on the 27th when the 1st/5th Battalion’s camp was shelled. He was evacuated to Dozinghem Casualty Clearing Station in the village of Westvleteren, where he died of his wounds on the 29th of October 1917.

Sources 5

"The Third Ypres Passchendaele. The Day-by-Day Account", McCarthy C., London, Arms & Armour Press, 1995, pg. 131-132.
Sources used
Further reference
Sources used
The Long, Long Trail
Sources used
War Diary Northumberland Fusiliers 1st/5th Bn.
Further reference