Regiment: 11th (Prince Albert’s Own) Hussars
James Bannatyne was born in 1883 to James and Emily. His early childhood was spent in Ireland and the family moved to Tiverton in the 1890s. One of three children, James was educated privately, attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and joined the 11th (Prince Albert’s Own) Hussars in 1907.
Clearly cut out for an Army life, by 1909, he had qualified as an instructor in signals, musketry and machine guns and passed his exams for promotion. An excellent horseman, he excelled in the local point-to-point races. In 1911, he was posted, as an instructor, to the Cavalry School at Netheravon staying until late 1913 when he rejoined the 11th Hussars who were stationed in Aldershot.
The 11th Hussars were mobilised immediately on the outbreak of the war and James, together with the regiment, sailed for France on 16th August 1914. In 1915, whilst in temporary command of A Squadron 11th Hussars, he was promoted to Major and posted to become second in command of 23rd Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. On 8th May 1916, he was badly wounded leading a night raid on the enemy trenches. He was evacuated to a field hospital but died of his wounds. He is buried in the Merville Communal Cemetery.