Frank Dickinson was born on the 9th of July 1894 the son of James William and Ellen Dickinson. He was baptised at St Luke, Eccleshill on the 5th August 1894 as James Franklin Dickinson but known thereafter as Frank. The family were living at 5 Westgate, Eccleshill and James was working as a quarryman and is the elder brother of Gordon Dickinson who appears on the St Luke Memorial alongside his nephew Frank.In 1901 James and Ellen were living at 5 Victoria Road, Westgate, Eccleshill and three children had been born to them. However by 1905 both James and Ellen had died. The children went to live with their
grandfather Robert Butler who in 1911 was living at 40 Stoney Lane Eccleshill with his wife Mary and their three daughters. Frank is still shown as James Franklin Dickinson and at the age of 16 years was working as a mule piecer. At the outbreak of War he was employed by Messrs. Smith and Hutton of Tunwell Mills, Eccleshill.He enlisted as Frank Dickinson on the 4th November 1914 with the 1/7th Batt. Of the Duke of Wellington Regiment as Private 266478 and they landed at Boulogne on the 14th April 1915.
At the beginning of June 1916 Frank was awarded the Military Medal for gallant conduct in the field and the news was conveyed to his sister Emily in a letter from Captain K Ogston who wrote:“Your brother wished me to convey to you the news that he has been awarded the Military Medal. This award has been given to him for gallantry during a patrol. “His work was excellent and he carried a wounded NCO back to our lines under very heavy rifle fire. His award was well earned and I might add that he is one of the very best and hardest working men in the company”.
A German offensive known as the Battle of Lys took place between the 9th April and the 29th April 1918. The attack was held by the British but Frank died of wounds in the New Zealand Stationary Hospital on the 13th April 1918. He was 26 years old and is buried at Longueness Souvenir Cemetery at St Omer which was a town with many casualty clearing stations.His effects were left to his brother Ernest and his sister Emily Dyatt who each received £6.5.9d on the 2nd September 1918 and the War Gratuity of £7.15s. each on the 26th May 1919. Researched and written by Jean Britteon, to whom many thanks