Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Harold Parry (1896 - 1917) - British

With many thanks to Lynne Sidaway who suggested I research this forgotten WW1 poet.  Harold was born one of twins in Bloxwich, Walsall, West Midlands, UK on 13th December 1896.  His parents were David Ebenezer Parry, a mining engineer and colliery manager, and his wife Sarah, nee Arkinsall.  Harold's siblings were:  Donald b. 1891, Dorothy, b. 1892, and Victor, his twin.

Educated initially at a local preparatory school, Harold went on to Queen Mary’s Grammar School, Walsall where he joined the Cadet Corps, wrote poetry and excelled at cricket and football.   He went on to study at Exeter College, Oxford.

Harold volunteered to join the Army in January 1916 and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the King’s Owen Yorkshire Light Infantry.   Transferred to the 17th Battalion of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps, Harold was posted to the Western Front, where he continued to write poetry.

Harold was killed on 6th May 1917 at Ypres and was buried in Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery, West Flanders, Belgium.   He is also commemorated in Field Road Cemetery, Bloxwich.

Harold Parry’s WW1 poetry collection “In Memoriam Harold Parry” was published by W.H. Smith in 1918


Sources:  Catherine W. Reilly “English Poetry of the First World War – A Bibliography” (St. Martin’s Press, New York, 1978), Find my Past, Free BMD, http://webwalsall.com/local-history-centre/?page_id=29 and

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