Clifton Rugby Football Club History
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Richmond Moffat Battye

 
 
 

He was born on the 26th September 1869 Lucknow, eldest son of Major Leigh Richmond Battye (Bengal Staff Corps). Baptised there on 13th October 1869.

Above his father, Leigh Richmond Battye

He lost both his parents in 1888. His father was killed in action on 18th June 1888 at Agar Valley Hagara District, India. Formerley of 43 Apsley Road, Clifton, Bristol. The family home had moved to 3 Woodstock Road, Redland, Bristol. His mother, Margaret Fanny Jane Moffat, also died in 1888.

He joined Clifton in 1889-1890

Lieutenant VI. (Prince of Wales') Bengal Cavalry, formerly of 10th Lincolnshire Regiment.

He was killed in an attack in the Chamkani territory on the 1st December 1897 during the Tirah Campaign. An account of the day appeared in THE CAMPAIGN IN TIRAH 1897-1898 AN ACCOUNT OF THE EXPEDITION AGAINST THE ORAKZAIS AND AFRIDIS UNDER GENERAL SIR WILLIAM LOCKHART, G.C.B., K.C.S.I. BASED (by permission) ON LETTERS CONTRIBUTED TO 'THE TIMES' BY COLONEL H. D. HUTCHINSON DIRECTOR OF MILITARY EDUCATION IN INDIA

It had been quite expected that the Mamozais and the Massozais would show fight, and that the Chamkanis, a small and insignificant section, would submit quietly. But, as is often the case, it was the unexpected which happened. The Massozais and Mamozais tendered their submission, and paid up their fines, as soon as our columns appeared on the scene ; while the Chamkanis, on the other hand, hurled their defiance at us, and promptly dared us to do our worst ! They were accordingly tackled at once (on ist December), their punishment being intrusted to Colonel Hill.

Colonel Hill's force consisted of 200 of the 5th Gurkha Rifles, 12th Khelat-i-Ghilzai Regiment, the Kapurthala Infantry, the 4th Gurkha Rifles, 400 dismounted cavalry (6th B.C. and Central India Horse), the Kohat Mounted Battery, two Maxims (Royal Scots Fusiliers), and last, but not least, the Gurkha Scouts. His objective was the principal Chamkani settlement of Thabi, about seven miles to the north-west of Hissar, and his orders were to burn and destroy every fortified post and tower either in it or on the road to it. This programme was not, however, fully carried out on the ist, because, owing to the extremely difficult country, and the stubborn resistance offered by the enemy, un- expected delays occurred ; and, thorough co-opera- tion between the two columns, into which for the purpose of attack Colonel Hill had divided his troops, did not take place : moreover, it was necessary to return to Hissar during daylight, to avoid the risk of an attack on the rear-guard after dark by the Massozais. The casualties on our side on this day were eight killed and seventeen wounded. Amongst the former was Richmond Battye, of the 6th B.C./ and in the latter were included Villiers - Stuart, 5th Gurkhas, severely wounded ; Vansittart, 5 th Gurkhas, and Pennington, 1 2th B.C., slightly wounded.

With reference to the death of Lieutenant Battye, the Pioneer wrote : " It is now almost a tradition with the Battyes that all shall die on the battlefield ; but one may nevertheless regret the death so early of yet another of this gallant family. Richmond Battye was a young officer of only eight years' service, eager, active, alert, and conscientious in the discharge of his duties, of a sound understanding, and full of a generous enthusiasm for his profession. He had acted as a correspondent for the Pioneer with the Kurram Column for some time back, and his letters and telegrams gave abundant evidence of the interest of his work. "

He was buried at Parachinar, Kurram Valley.