A bugler and bearer party from1 RIFLES carry Private Burt’s to the graveside 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright.jpg
WWI

Soldier Killed In First World War Finally Laid To Rest

Private Burt was killed on 16 September 1916, during the Battle of Flers-Courcelette.

A bugler and bearer party from1 RIFLES carry Private Burt’s to the graveside 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright.jpg

Private Arthur Burt enlisted in the Army as soon as war broke out in September 1914 (Picture: Crown Copyright).

A soldier who was killed during the First World War has finally been laid to rest.

Private Arthur Burt served with the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry and his final resting place is at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) Guards’ Cemetery, Lesboeufs, on the Somme in France.

The service was organised by the Ministry of Defence’s Joint Casualty and Compassionate Centre (JCCC).

A bearer party from 1 RIFLES carry Private Burt’s coffin (Picture: Crown Copyright).
A bearer party from 1 RIFLES carry Private Burt’s coffin (Picture: Crown Copyright).

Pte Burt was killed on 16 September 1916, during the Battle of Flers-Courcelette, which was part of the Battle of the Somme.

He was found with several artefacts including an engraved disc, thanks to which the JCCC were then able to trace the nephew of Pte Burt, Mr Philip Lean.

Mr Lean provided a DNA sample which confirmed the identity of Pte Burt after more than a century.

"Being able to discover the identity of an unknown soldier is hugely rewarding," said Nicola Nash from the JCCC.

"His bravery and sacrifice will always be honoured and remembered."

ID tag that helped dentify Pte Burt’s remains 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright.jpg
The ID tag that helped identify Pte Burt’s remains (Picture: Crown Copyright).

Mr Lean and other eight members of his family were able to attend the burial to pay their respects.

"Our lad from Mevagissey was afforded an amazing military send-off," said Pte Burt's family.

"Being able to be there as a family was really special and it was a privilege to attend."

Mr Philip Lean, nephew of Private Burt 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright.jpg
Mr Lean's DNA was instrumental in identifying Pte Burt (Picture: Crown Copyright).

Private Burt enlisted in the Army as soon as war broke out in September 1914. At the time, he was aged 27.

He signed up at the Keep in Bodmin, which had been the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry headquarters since the 1880s.

Pte Burt joined 7th Battalion and was soon sent to France after receiving his training.

The firing party from 1 RIFLES fire a salute to Private Burt 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright.jpg
The firing party from 1 RIFLES fire a salute to Private Burt (Picture: Crown Copyright).

He was praised for his gallant and brave conduct during the attack on Guillemont on 31 August 1916 and was recommended for the Military Medal.

Reverend Richard Begg CF said:

"After nearly 103 years, since he fell on the Somme, we were able to continue a work started by the Chaplains who served in World War One, the devotion and dignity to the care of those who served and those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in service of their country."

Private Burt's headstone 150419 CREDIT Crown Copyright
A new headstone bearing Private Burt’s name has been provided by the CWGC (Picture: Crown Copytight).

The CWGC will now care for his final resting place in perpetuity.