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Formby Council Worker Dies in the Great War.

At the going down of the Sun
I first wrote about Hector McLellan in August 2014, I had been looking through the early minutes of Formby Parish/Urban District Council and the story jumped off the page.

Mr Hector McLellan was a young housing officer working for Formby Urban District Council when World War I started. He promptly joined up to fight. As a result, local Council members met to consider the consequences.

Special meeting on Thursday 13th August 1914 at Council Office at 8 pm

The Council members met shortly afterwards to agree the following.

That the Council do pay each employee in their service on an actuarial basis the difference between the pay received from the Army and that received from the Council whilst on active service and that their position be open for them on their return from such service.

Moved by Cllr Bolton
Sec by Cllr Porter
And resolved unanimously:

That in the case of Mr H McLellan the assistant collector he be paid seven shillings (7/-) per week after the 25th instant and to Messrs Aindow and Brooks the difference between the amounts received through the Army and that of £1-1-0 per week paid by the Council.

(Source: Blog Entry August 8 2014)

The special reference to Hector McLellan arose out of the fact that his widowed Mother was utterly dependent on his salary and she was penalised because of his act of volunteering.

His name is on the War Memorial in the Formby Memorial garden and on the Roll of Honour Memorial in the Swimming Pool grounds Since then I have thought little about his story but entirely by accident, I stumbled on the final sad chapter to his life, while looking for a story for the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day blog post.

Ormskirk Advertiser - Thursday 14 November 1918

Hector McLellan

FORMBY COUNCIL OFFICIAL KILLED. -

The death in action is reported of Sergeant Hector McLellan, Royal Fusiliers, whilst engaged in one of the great battles in France on October 25th.

Prior to the war, Sergeant McLellan was assistant clerk of the Formby Urban District Council and had been in the employ of that authority since leaving school.

As a member of the 7th Liverpool Territorials, he was mobilised at the outbreak of war and was given his corporal's stripes on the first day of hostilities.

Subsequently transferred to the Royal Fusiliers, he proceeded to Italy, and was in General Plumer's command, seeing much fighting there, and later in Belgium.

Next time you're in the village take a minute or two to find his name. Now, you'll have a small glimpse into his personal life and public service and death in the service of the Nation so close to the end of hostilities.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.