Private Harry Bellamy was the son of George Bellamy and his wife of Warren Farm, Cottesmore and was born at Ridlington on 15 August 1891. He was a coal miner before enlisting in the Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment), serving with the 2/8th Battalion. He went to the Western Front on 15 July 1917, and was killed in action just two months later, on 26 September during the Third Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele). The battalion war diary says the Foresters were on the Somme at the start of Third Ypres and only moved to the Ypres area in late September. The diary is unusually sparse with its information. It says the battalion moved to Brandhoek No 2 area on 23 September. On 24 September: "The Battalion moved to Forward Area, billeted in the Old British Front Line Trenches." For 25-29 September, when Harry was killed, the diary simply says: "11.30 pm. The Battalion form up and move to the position of the Assembly for the Attack," immediately followed by "March back to camp at Vlamertinghe." What actually happened is contained in an account attached to the war diary. "Zero was 5.50 am on the 26th when the whole Attack moved forward. The 2/7th Sherwood Foresters were detailed to take the ground as far east as Fokker Farm. The 2/8th was then to pass through and take the ground as far east as Riverside...The attack went entirely according to Programme, all objectives were taken to time." A heavy German counterattack was launched that evening but "it was broken by the Artillery fire and our men did not give at all." On the night of 28 September the battalion was relieved: "On the return journey the Boche dropped a number of Gas Shells and the men had to march back with Gas Helmets on." Casualties during the four days amounted to three officers and 43 men killed, with 11 officers and 239 men wounded. Harry has no known grave and so he is remembered on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Panel 100, and also on the war memorial at St Nicholas' Church in Cottesmore.
Do you know something about Harry that hasn't been mentioned?
You can add any new information and images as a contribution at the bottom of this page.