James Kennedy

Information about birth

Date of birth:
Place of birth:
Hulme, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom

Army information

England, United Kingdom
British Expeditionary Force
Lance Corporal
Service number:
Enlistment place:
Manchester, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom
 —  Border Regiment, 2nd Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
Place of death:
Gheluvelt, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)


Tyne Cot Memorial
Panel: 85

Distinctions and medals 3

Points of interest 3

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

My story

Lance Corporal James Kennedy was part of the 2nd Border Regiment (7th Division, 20th Brigade).
On 24 October the 2nd Border Regiment relieved the 16th and 17th Sherwood Foresters south of the Menin Road on a line running from J.21.b.30.12 on the Menin Road to J.21.c.9.7. opposite Lewis House.

On 26 October the 2nd Border Regiment was to attack and hold the line J.22.c.70.45. (Gheluvelt Village) and J.22.c.10.05. The attack was hart of an operation to be carried out by the 20th Brigade. With the 8th Devons on the left and 2nd Queens on the right. When they advanced at 5.40 am, over very marshy ground, men were only just able to move.

C Company on the right got stuck in the mud up to the waist during the advance and were almost entirely wiped out from machine gun fire from Lewis House and four pill boxes (J.21.d.7.9) D Company on the left finding the ground impossible to move as well, moved over towards the Menin Road. Practically the whole D Company was wiped out as well. The survivors reformed at crater on the road. B Company coming from the rear also moved to the left and suffered the same faith. An attack was then made from the crater but with no better success. A Company came in and proceeded to attack the pepper boxes (J.21.d.7.9.). One of them was taken and a machine gun captured but the remaining three, covered by fire from Lewis House, defied all attempts to take them. The remains of the companies were to advance and take up a line of shell holes about 150 yards of Gheluvelt. Due to the boggy ground, men were forced to move on a narrow belt of ground close to the Menin Road, being easy targets for machine gun fire. A handful of men were seen in Gheluvelt village at and around the ruins of the church.

By 10 am it was apparent that the objective could not be reached with a small number of men left. A gap was created in the new established line south of the Menin Road near Tower Hamlets. By then, the companies had only 40 men left in position. A large number of men had gone north of the road and got mixed up with the Devons. The gap remained until the battalion was relieved. Only a few men came out of the line.

About 126 soldiers of the 2nd Border Regiment were reported missing after the attack. Lance Corporal Kennedy being one of them. His body wasn’t retrieved or identified after the war. Lance Corporal Kennedy is remembered on Tyne Cot Memorial.

Files 1

Sources 6

Sources used
Sources used
Mc Carthy C., Passchendaele Day-by-Day account, Unicorn Publishing Group, 2018, London, pp.142-143.
Sources used
Naval and Military Archives
Sources used
The Long Long Trail
Sources used
Wylly, H.C. The Border Regiment in the Great War. Aldershot: Gale & Polden, 1924, pp 147 -150.
Sources used