Michael Cullen

Michael Cullen

Birth 10/8/1893 Death 1st Jul 1916 Private
East Lancashire Regiment
Service #18966

Personal Details

Place of Birth Cleator Moor
Residence at Enlistment Accrington, Lancashire
Residence (Roll of Honour)
Residence 1911 Census 110 Manor Street , Accrington , Lancashire
School(s) Attended
Religion/Church Attended
Organisation Membership
Employment/Trade Coal pit drawer, below ground
Place of Work
Family (Parents and Grandparents) Charles and Elizabeth Cullen
Siblings Elizabeth, Mary, James, John, Charles, Annie, Peter, Theresa, Patrick
Wife's Name and Maiden Name
Remarriage of Widow
Children's Christian Name(s)
Family Connection to Roll of Honour Brother Pte John Cullen , 53641 , 2/5th Bttn ,Manchester Regt ,


The Victory Medal
The Victory Medal
The British War Medal, 1914-18
The British War Medal, 1914-18

Military Details

Regiment at Enlistment East Lancashire Regiment
Battalion at Enlistment 11th Btn.
Rank at Enlistment Private
Naval Vessels Served
Service Number at Enlistment 18966
Date of Enlistment 1/2/1915
Place of Enlistment Accrington
Other Regiment
Other Battalion
Other Rank
Date of Transfer to other Regiment
Service Facts
Battalion Diary or Nautical Facts The Accrington Pals, officially the 11th (Service) Battalion (Accrington), East Lancashire Regiment, was a pals battalion of Kitchener's Army raised in and around the town of Accrington during the First World War
Recruiting was initiated by the mayor of Accrington following Lord Kitchener's call for volunteers, and it took only ten days to raise a complete battalion. The battalion's nickname is a little misleading since of the four 250-strong companies that made up the original battalion, only one was actually composed of men from Accrington. The rest volunteered from other East Lancashire towns nearby such as Burnley, Blackburn, and Chorley. The men from Chorley, who formed Y Company, were known as the Chorley Pals.[3] The men from Burnley, who formed Z Company, were known as the Burnley Pals.
The Accrington Pals joined the 94th Brigade of the 31st Division, a "pals" division containing many North Country pals battalions. With the 31st Division, the Accrington Pals were initially deployed to Egypt in early 1916 to defend the Suez Canal from the threat of the Ottoman Empire. The troopship carrying the Accrington Pals was narrowly missed by a torpedo; a fortunate miss because the ship also carried sixty tons of lyddite explosive.
The Accrington Pals next moved to France where they first saw action in the Battle of the Somme. On the first day on the Somme, 1 July 1916, the 31st Division was to attack the village of Serre-lès-Puisieux and form a defensive flank for the rest of the British advance. The 31st Division's attack on Serre was a complete failure, although some of the Accrington Pals did make it as far as the village before being killed or captured. One of the battalion's signallers, observing from the rear, reported:
"We were able to see our comrades move forward in an attempt to cross No Man's Land, only to be mown down like meadow grass. I felt sick at the sight of the carnage and remember weeping."
Approximately 700 men from the Accrington Pals went into action on 1 July; 585 men became casualties, 235 killed and 350 wounded in about half an hour. The battalion's commander, Lieutenant-Colonel A. W. Rickman, was among the wounded. A rumour spread around Accrington that only seven men had survived from the battalion, and an angry crowd surrounded the mayor's house, demanding information.
The Accrington Pals were effectively wiped out in a matter of minutes on the first day on the Somme. The battalion was brought back up to strength and served for the remainder of the war, moving to the 92nd Brigade of the 31st Division in February 1918.

Death and Memorial Details

Age at Death 23
Date of Death 1st Jul 1916
Regiment at Death East Lancashire Regiment
Battalion/Vessel at Death 11th (The Accrington Pals)
Rank at Death Private
Circumstances of Death Killed in Action
Service Number at Death 18966
Field of Action at Death France and Flanders
Place of Death Somme
Battle at Death Battle of the Somme ( First Day)
Grave/Memorial Image Michael Cullen
Location of Grave/Memorial THIEPVAL MEMORIAL
Grave Position Pier and Face 6 C.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission Link https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/757901/cullen,-michael/
Grave/Memorial Country France
Private Memorial St Johns Church war memorial


Notes Micheal Cullens Brother , Pte. Peter, 18078; b. 1st June 1891 at Cleator Moor, Cumbria, s. of Charles Cullen; bro. of 18966 Michael Cullen; lived at 110 Manor Street, Accrington; e. 1st February 1915; w. 1st-5th July 1916 ("he was one who for a time was in the German trenches") and returned to England for hospitalization; posted to 12th Bn., East Lancs. Regt. (subsequently 75th Training Reserve Bn.) 17th August 1916;
Link #1 http://www.pals.org.uk/list_ce.htm
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