On 23rd April a new memorial to the Worcestershire Yeomanry, commemorating the Centenary of the Battles of Qatia and Oghratina, was unveiled in Cripplegate Park, Worcester. The new memorial was created by sculptor and mosaic artist Victoria Harrison.
The Battles of Qatia and Oghratina saw the loss of 9 officers and 101 other ranks including Trooper 2414 Francis ‘Frank’ Folkes of Broadway who was killed in action at Qatia on 23rd April 1916. Born in Broadway in 1889, Frank worked as a butcher’s apprentice before joining the Worcestershire Yeomanry following the outbreak of the First World War. Frank was initially declared as missing in action after the battle at Qatia east of the Suez Canal, on Easter Sunday 1916 and 9 months later was declared as killed in action that day.
Frank Folkes is commemorated on the Broadway War Memorial, the memorial board in Broadway First School where he was a pupil and on the Jerusalem Memorial. Fellow villager Sidney Halford served with Frank and was taken prisoner at Qatia. Sidney returned home to Broadway at the end of the war following his release from prison.
For more information about the memorial and the Worcestershire Yeomanry visit www.ww1worcestershire.co.uk. ‘Broadway Remembers’ ISBN 978-0-9929881-0-1 includes a biography and photo of Frank Folkes (1889-1916).