Enoch Kinsella

ENOCH KINSELLA (1882 - 1916)

Enoch was born on 7 February 1882 at the home of his parents, 2 Court, Anderson Street, Macclesfield. Enoch was originally baptized on 17 June 1885 at Christ Church but five years later, along with his siblings, he was baptised into the Catholic Church at St Alban's on 2 April 1890. By 1891 the Kinsella family had moved from Pinfold Street to 87, Pierce Street. Enoch's father, John (from Congleton), and his mother, Susannah (from Hanley, Staffordshire), both worked as Silk Weavers to support their six children. Anne, Samuel, James, Enoch, Jane and William. Enoch attended St Alban's and was a pupil at the parish school. He was an active member of St Alban's Gymnastics Class.

On 12 May 1900, the eighteen year old Enoch married twenty year old Edith Brocklehurst at St Paul's Church in Macclesfield. Edith, more commonly known as Ada, had been born in the Union Street Workhouse and worked in the town as a silk weaver. The newlyweds moved into 4 Court, 1 House, Pierce Street. Iron moulder Enoch and his wife, Ada, went on to have six children: Albert, Minnie, Jane, Edith, Mary and Arthur, who was born on 13 May 1915 when Enoch was training with his Regiment in England.

Enoch attested, a few weeks after the outbreak of war, joining the 12th Cheshire Regiment on 31 August 1914. The record of his 'Primary Medical Examination', on 3 September, describes Enoch as being five feet seven inches tall and weighing one hundred and thirty two pounds. He had a "fresh complexion", grey eyes and fair hair. His initial training was in Seaford, near Brighton and later in 1915 at Prees Heath in Whitchurch.

During his service, Enoch's behaviour resulted in him building up a list of misdemeanours on his 'Conduct Sheet'. When stationed at Seaford, in April 1915, he went missing for over fifteen hours. As a result, Enoch was confined to barracks for four days and forfeited one day's pay. About a year later, he was confined to barracks, again at Seaford, for seven days as a punishment for returning late from leave. In October 1915, it was found that Enoch had been "absent from tattoo until answering his name at 6am" four days later. As a result of this, Enoch was deducted five day's pay.

Initially, Enoch served with the 12th (Service) Battalion, Cheshire Regiment. Following final training at Aldershot, he was due to travel with his Regiment for France, on 6 September 1915, as part of British Expeditionary Force. However, Enoch was shot in his left foot and treated at the First Eastern General Hospital in Cambridge. When he was discharged, after a ten day stay in hospital, Enoch was transferred to the 14th Cheshire Regiment. On 5 November 1915, he was posted to the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force. It was with the 8th (Service) Battalion, Cheshire Regiment, Enoch embarked from Port Said on 14 February 1916 and two weeks later disembarked at Basra. It was in Messapotamia, on 19 April 1916, after taking part in the heavy fighting at Bail Isa, that the thirty four year old Enoch was 'Killed in Action'.

Soldiers recovering at the 1st Eastern General Hospital
Soldiers recovering at the 1st Eastern General Hospital, Cambridge © roll-of-honour.com

On 2 June 1916, The Macclesfield Courier ran a lengthy report on Enoch's death. Under the heading, "Macclesfield Men Killed: Married Men's Sacrifices", the paper explained:

"Private Kinsella, who was thirty four years of age, was a native of Macclesfield, being the son of the late Mr J. Kinsella, whose widow now resides at 87 Pierce Street. His father died about ten years ago. The deceased soldier received his education at St Alban's school and had attended the Roman Catholic Church all his life. He served his apprenticeship as an iron moulder at Messers Harlow's, King Edward Street, where he had been employed for seventeen years."

The Courier tells us that following enlisting with his Regiment, Enoch,

"...underwent training in various parts of England. For some time he was in hospital with a poisoned foot. Subsequently, he was transferred to the 14th Cheshires and afterwards to the 8th, leaving Whitchurch about seven months ago for Egypt. From there he was transferred to Salonica [also known as Thessaloniki] and it is believed that he met his death while operating with General Gorringe's force sent to the relief of
Kut [Kut al Amara is a city in eastern Iraq]."

Following Enoch's death, his widow Ada, now living at 24, Leigh Street, received a message of sympathy form Lord Kitchener as well as the customary plaque and scroll from the King. Ada was subsequently informed that, from 11 December 1916, she would receive a weekly pension of 29/- for her and her children.

Private Enoch Kinsella has no known resting place. He is commemorated on the Basra Memorial in Iraq alongside over 40,500 servicemen from the Commonwealth forces who died during the Great War in Mesopotamia and whose graves are unknown.

Enoch's youngest brother, William, served with the 7th Cheshire Regiment and was later promoted to an acting Lance Corporal with the Machine Gun Corps. William, unlike his brother Enoch, survived the war.

Enoch Kinsella Birth Certificate
Enoch Kinsella's Birth Certificate (click to enlarge) © www.ancestry.co.uk

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