Rank: Private
Service Number: 18674.
Regiment: 8th Bn. Cheshire Regiment Died of wounds Wednesday 5th January 1916 Age 36County Memorial Congleton
Grave\Panel Ref: J.115.
Turkey (including Gallipoli)

Son of Mr. Henry Cartlidge and Mrs. Martha Cartlidge, of 16, Davenport Street, Congleton, Cheshire and husband of Mrs, Alice Cartlidge (nee Chaddock) of 22, River Street, Congleton, Cheshire. They were married in a Civil Ceremony in 1901. He had two children, Harry and Alice Cartlidge. He had one sister Hannah Cartlidge. In 1891 at the age of 12, he was employed as a Servant at the Lake Farm, Back Lane, Congleton, Cheshire by a Mr. John Hill. In 1911, he was employed as a Foreman Fustian Cutter, by Councillor F. Jackson.

Private Ernest Cartlidge enlisted in the 8th Battalion, The Cheshire Regiment, in November 1914. The Regiment was attached to the 40th Brigade, 13th Western Division, which was situated at Blackdown in Hampshire in February 1915. On the 5th of June 1915, orders were received to prepare for a move to the Mediterranean, but due to the withdrawal of all mechanical transport the first reinforcement drafts were ordered not to sail. The first transports left port and embarked to Alexandria on the 7th of June and had arrived in Mudros by the 4th of July in preparation for a landing at Gallipoli. The landing on Cape Helles took place between the 6th/16th of July and relieved the 29th Division. They left and returned to Mudros at the end of the month. The entire Division landed at Anzac Cove between the 3rd/5th of August 1915. A great storm at the end of December ended the period of trench warfare after which the peninsular was evacuated. The storm was most violent, during which a relief took place. The next morning the plain was covered with the dead, dying and half frozen men of the relieving Brigade. The dry nullahs became swift torrents, down which poured through the lines of the Cheshire's, dead, Turks and a considerable amount of Turkish war material. The Battalion suffered heavy casualties and provided an opportunity to get rid of a number of men under peace conditions. The evacuation was organised in this way. All the casualties were removed by hospital ship. The remainder of the troops were removed by night until 10,000 remained in each of the three areas, at Anzac, at the north and south sides of Suvla Bay. The 13th Division held the line in front of the south side of Suvla Bay. 5,000 troops were removed from each sector on the 18th of December without any problems. The bivouacs on the beaches held skeleton formations and fires were kept going in the usual cooking areas. The Beetles that came to fetch the troops came too early and the Turks saw them as reinforcements, so on the 19th they reacted by giving the beach a good strafing as they had ever had, in fact, better, because the Turks had a supply of newly arrived 5.9-inch howitzers. Shell fire nearly hit a pier from which troops on the south side were to embark from, but there were no casualties, as the areas were only occupied after dark. The Division was evacuated from Suvla Bay on the 19th/20th of December 1915, where the infantry had a week's rest before returning to the Helles bridgehead. The Division was evacuated from Helles and by the 31st of January 1916 were at Port Said. Private Ernest Cartlidge was seriously wounded during the evacuation, wounds from which he later died.

Extract from the Congleton Chronicle 1916.

Many sportsmen in Congleton heard the sad news of his death with profound regret, for he was (a good old sport) and followed the fluctuating fortunes of the Town's Football Club with an interest that never wavered. He was an erstwhile Congleton League player when for the winning of a silver bauble some hard knocks were given and taken in quite a Spartan spirit and it is well within the recollection of old devotees of the uncertain game of footer, that, in a match between picked teams of stars from the West End and Hornets Reserves, Cartlidge played a really great game and dislocated his collar bone. That was the day when embryo footballers were plentiful and on Saturday afternoons the various playing pitches were veritable hot beds of enthusiasm. . The last letter received by his wife was on the 6th of December in which he stated that he was in good health. He leaves a widow and two children.

Cheshire County Memorial Project would like to thank John and Christopher Pullen for this information on Ernest.