It’s poignant today (12/11/2023) to remember Cornishmen who died in the Palestine Campaign: particularly as another tragic conflict unfolds in the Middle East. On 3 December 1917, many men of the 16th Devonshire Regiment took part in the unsuccessful attack on El Foka (now known as Beit ‘Ur al-Fauqa) and suffered 286 casualties, of whom 52 were killed. They are buried in n the Jerusalem War Cemetery. Read more here.
The 16th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment was formed in Egypt on 21 December 1916 by the amalgamation of two yeomanry regiments, the Royal 1st Devon Yeomanry and the Royal North Devon Hussars. There were many Cornish farmers’ sons in these regiments.
Among those who were killed on 3 December 1917 were:
Cecil Andrews, born in Hayle
Frank Black, born in St Winnow
Francis John Carbis, from Teignmouth (St Buryan)
Hugh Kitto, born St Austell
William John Gill, born Truro
Paul Henry Arthur Gordon, born Camborne.
Here is excellent background written by Barnstaple Museum on the battle of el Foka.