Staff Sergeant
Harold Beech


About Harold

  • Name
  • Initials
  • Surname
  • Date of Birth
    24 April 1885
  • Birth town
    Hough Green Widnes
  • Resided town
  • Commemorated
  • Nationality
  • Place of death
  • Date of death
    6 September 1966
  • Married
  • Occupation
    School Teacher

Service Information

  • Army

  • Service Number
  • Rank
    Staff Sergeant
  • Regiment
    Army Ordnance Corps


Harold Beech was one of eight children, and born in Widnes on 24 April 1885 to John and Elizabeth Beech. Harold was a schoolteacher both before and after the war.  The 1901 Census records Harold as a teacher aged 16.  His elder sister Edith was also a teacher from a young age. On the 1911 Census his father John is listed as a builder who is employing his son Adrian as a carpenter.

Harold’s service record is not available but we believe that he joined the Royal Army Ordnance Corps quite early in the war and was sent to Egypt in March 1915. In the winter of 1915, Harold married Florence Ellen Moss at Bucklow, Lancashire.  Harold was a Staff Sergeant when he passed through Peterborough East Station on 21 June 1916.  He wrote in the visitors’ book “Stranded but happy (& grateful)”.  He progressed to Warrant Officer 1st Class in January 1917.  Harold was awarded the 15 Star, British War and Victory Medals.

Unfortunately, we know little else of Harold’s war experiences and he next appears in 1920 on a Teachers Registration Council document which states he became headmaster of Oughtrington Council School, Lymm, in September 1920.  In the 1939 Register the family were living in Oughtrington Road, Lymm and Harold was still a school teacher. Harold died on 6 September 1966, aged 81 and was living at 26 Argyll Road, Blackpool.

Harold and Florence had a son, Jack Stearn Beech (Beach), born in 1923. He served as a pilot in the Royal Air Force in World War 2. He was killed whilst taking part in a night navigation training exercise in a Wellington X at RAF Silverstone, Northamptonshire on 3 October 1943. The plane ran into difficulties on landing, managed to avoid another plane on the runway and then crashed into two trees and burst into flames, killing all but two of the crew.

The Royal Army Ordnance Corps (RAOC) dealt with the supply and maintenance of weaponry, munitions and other military equipment.

Do get in touch if you can tell us more about Harold and his family.

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