Ronald Lindsey Johnston was born in Altrincham on the 24th September 1889, the son of William Henry BSc. And Agnes Morton Johnson of Woodleigh, Altrincham. He was educated at Summerfields, Eton and Kings College, Cambridge, where he gained an honour’s degree in classics. He went to Australia to work at the Sydney branch of his company. On the outbreak of the war he returned and received a commission in the Royal Field Artillery. On the death of his brother, William Morton Johnson he was appointed Chairman and managing director of R. Johnson, Clapham and Morris Ltd. in Manchester.
He was appointed acting captain on the 18th February 1917 commanding the 23rd Division Trench Mortar Battery.
He went to France on the 27th August 1915
He was wounded in September 1916 with a gunshot wound to his left ear but returned to the front in December.
Brief history of the Battery:
By March 1916, most Divisions had three Medium Batteries, designated X, Y and Z. For example, in the 24th Division they would be X.24,Y.24 and Z.24. There was also the Heavy Battery, designated V, such as V.24. The light Stokes batteries under each Brigade took their number from the Brigade, so for example 123rd Brigade in the 41st Division included 123rd TM Battery from June 1916. Z Battery was in most cases broken up in February 1918, with personnel redeployed to the other batteries.
Organisation of a Trench Mortar Battery
Light Trench Mortar Battery (2 Sections, each of four 3-inch Stokes mortars) Captain, 3 Lieutenants or Second Lieutenants, 2 Sergeants, 8 Corporals or Lance-Corporals, 32 Privates, 4 Batmen. Medium Trench Mortar Battery (four 2-inch mortars)2 Officers, 1 Sergeant, 4 Corporals or Bombardiers, 16 Privates, 2 Batmen. Heavy Trench Mortar Battery (four 9.45-inch mortars) Captain, 2 Lieutenants or Second Lieutenants, 3 Sergeants, 1 Fitter, 4 Corporals, 4 Bombardiers, 47 Gunners (including 3 telephonists), 2 Orderlies, 1 Clerk, 1 Cook, 3 Batmen.
He left an endowment for a sports field in Moston, Manchester.