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  • Christina Drummond

Second Lieutenant Harold Norton Clifton, 1st Battalion, the Coldstream Guards

Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1915, Second Lieutenant Harold Norton Clifton, 1st Battalion, the Coldstream Guards, died of wounds received a week earlier during the fighting at Cuinchy, near La Bassee in France.

The younger son of an architect, he was educated at St. Peter’s Court, Broadstairs, and Harrow. At St. Peter’s Court school, he was not only an exemplary scholar, but excelled at sports, being a member of the football eleven, captain of the swimming team, and representing the school in the Public Schools boxing competition.

Second Lieutenant Clifton joined the Artists’ Rifles in 1913, going with them to France after the outbreak of the Great War, having been promoted to corporal. On the 1st of January, 1915, he obtained a commission in the Coldstream Guards. His battalion suffered two hundred and two casualties on the 25th of January near Cuinchy, some whose bodies were never recovered as they had been caught up in mine explosions. Second Lieutenant Clifton was grievously wounded during the fighting; he was taken to a German field hospital but could not be saved. He is buried in the Caberet-Rouge British Cemetery, at Souchez in France.

Harold, from Chelsea, was 20 years old.

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