Fred Binns

Private Frederick Binns, 2nd Battalion, Royal Scots Regiment. Service number 7724.

Private Fred Binns

Fred was born on August 7, 1882 and baptised in 1887, at St Peter's Church. Parents Frederick and Martha Binns. His father was a moulder. They were living at Calton Street, Keighley at this time. By 1891 they had moved to 25, Lister Street, Keighley. By 1901 they were at 15, Fell Lane, Keighley. Fred enlisted with the regular Army on September 8, 1901. and served in India from February 4, 1904 to March 8, 1909. His service earned him a conduct description of 'exemplary' and two good conduct badges. He was discharged on 24th September 1913 on expiration of service. He attested to 'D' Army reserve on February 18, 1914. and was posted to 3rd Battalion Royal Scots. He was recalled to the colours at the outbreak of war and entered France on August 31, 1914.

Keighley News dated 15th April 1916:
The death took place at the East Leeds Military Hospital on Monday of Private Fred Binns (33) 2nd Royal Scots, son of Mrs Binns, of 86, Chip Hill, Oakworth.
Private Binns had seen nearly fifteen years' service, joining the army shortly before the outbreak of the Boer War, during which he was a gymnastic instructor in this country. He served five years in India, and at the outbreak of the present war, being a reservist, was recalled to the colours, going out to France immediately and taking part in the now famous retreat from Mons, the battles of the Aisne and Marne, and subsequent engagements up to the fighting at La Bassoe where he was wounded in the foot and back by shrapnel. He was brought over to hospital in Ireland, and the ship in which he came over was sunk by a mine on its next voyage.
On reaching convalescence, he spent a few weeks at home, then went to Weymouth, and acted as a military policeman, and later to Edinburgh, where he was a signalling instructor. About three months ago, he visited his home, and being taken ill, was removed to the Spencer Street Hospital, and later to Beckett Street Leeds, where he died on Monday last.
Before the war he worked at Barnoldswick as a moulder, and was well known in that town and at Keighley.
The Funeral took place at Christ Church, Oakworth on Thursday afternoon, the Rev. J. Harrison (Primitive Methodist minister) officiating at the house, and the Rev. J. W. Pendleton (Vicar) at the church and grave side.
The route to the church was lined with people, and as the Royal Scots were unavailable seven members of the 21st West Yorkshire Regiment from Skipton, in charge of Sergeant Gill, who came by permission of the Commanding officer and at the request of Captain Kent (recruiting officer from Keighley) acted as bearers.
There were also present nine wounded soldiers from the Spencer Street Hospital. A number of floral tributes were sent.

He is remembered with a special memorial at Oakworth's Christ Church which reads: "Buried elsewhere in this churchyard 7724 Private F. Binns Royal Scots 10th April 1916 Age 33"

Fred's mother Martha Binns was living at 86, Chip Hill, Oakworth on his death. The cause of death was given as 'Melanotic Sarcoma of Liver'.

He was awarded the 1914 Star with clasp, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
He is named on Keighley St Peter's Church Roll of Honour and Barnoldswick Conservative Club War Memorial.

Source information:
Birth, Marriage and Death records.
Census records for 1901 and 1911.
Soldier's Effects Records, medal rolls.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
Keighley News - newspaper archives held at Keighley Library.

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