BLACKBURN, Seth Cpl. 15263

Seth Blackburn enlisted in Chorley on the 16th September 1914 having served for eight years in the Territorial Force with the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment.

Barely a month after enlisting he was promoted to Corporal on the 9th October 1914 and five months later on the 12th March 1915 he was promoted to Acting Lance Sergeant (confirmed 7th August 1915). Seth was then transferred to the 12th Battalion of the East Lancashire Regiment on the 3rd September 1915 (the 12th being the Regiment’s Reserve Battalion based at Chadderton Camp near Oldham).

His service and medical record showed that he suffered from Epilepsy, having spent eight months in Whittingham Asylum in 1913 – his attack being brought upon by a bang of the head (although one of his sister’s was recorded as suffering from the disorder). He was admitted to Mill Road Infirmary in Liverpool on the 17th April 1916 after another fit, developing further mental health conditions. A medical board at Preston on the 29th June 1916 concluded that he was suffering from “Delusional Insanity” and he was duly discharged from the Army on the 19th August 1916 as being “no longer physically fit for war service”.

Seth was born in Chorley in July 1885, one of eight children born to Ann and Seth Blackburn. His father was a Painter and Plumber and Seth was recorded as being an Apprentice Plumber on the 1901 Census (they were living at 29 Gillibrand Street in Chorley at the time). On the 1911 Census, Seth was a boarder at 7 Back Clifton Street in Blackpool, giving his occupation as “House Painter”. On his enlistment form he gave his address as 52 Gillibrands Walks in Chorley and that he worked as a Plumber; he was known to have attended Trinity Wesleyan Church.

Other Information: We elected, as Historians, to record Seth’s medical condition as it was aggravated by his war service and brought upon his discharge from the Army; the above information is in the public domain being held at the National Archives and accessible to all. Note that there were two Seth Blackburn’s from Chorley who served in the Army during the First World War.