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George Joachim Goschen

George Joachim GoschenLieutenant The Hon George Joachim GOSCHEN
5th Battalion The Buffs (E Kent Regiment)

Date of birth: 18 November 1893
Date of death: 19 January 1916

Died of wounds received in action aged 22
Buried Amara War Cemetery Plot I B 16

George Joachim was born in London, the only son of the 2nd Viscount Goschen and his wife, Lady Margaret Evelyn Gathorne-Hardy. His grandfather George Goschen 1st Viscount, had been Chancellor of Oxford University from 1903 until his death in 1907.

His father fell in love with Lady Margaret Evelyn-Gathorne Hardy, the youngest of five daughters of Gathorne Hardy, 1st Earl of Cranbrook, who was eight years older than he was and desired to marry her. His father, the 1st Viscount, was, however, strongly opposed to their marriage and used his influence to get an appointment for his son as a Private Secretary to Lord Jersey, the Governor of New South Wales in Australia. Goschen calmly obeyed his father's orders and worked in Australia from 1890 to 1892. On his return from Australia, however, he married Margaret on 26 January 1893.

From 1895 - 1906 his father was a Conservative Member of Parliament for East Grinstead, and the family were living at 20, Cadogan Gardens, SW.

George was educated at Eton and was at Christ Church from 1912 until 1914. He joined the Buffs at the outbreak of war, before he had completed his time at Christ Church, and served in India and Mesopotamia. He was wounded twice on 7 January, 1916, at the Battle of Sheik Sa’ad, and was mentioned in dispatches for gallantry in the same action. He died in Amara of his wounds.

From the Regimental history:-
“Our force began to advance and came under fire almost at once, and the artillery opened at 8 o’clock. The firing increased hourly in intensity as the day wore on, from rifles and shrapnel and later on from machine guns, too, and casualties began to grow to an unpleasant extent. The adjutant, LT HS Marchant was killed, and Lt-Col J Munn-Mace, Major E Clarke and many others were wounded. The advance was over open country and the available cover was so meagre as to be almost non-existent. 

“There was a mirage too which interfered considerably with observation, but by the middle of the afternoon a much thinned out firing line of Buffs, Black Watch and Seaforth Highlanders had got within about 400yds of the position. There were not enough men to keep up the pressure, however, and as there was every appearance of a counter attack being contemplated, these British troops prepared a line about 200yds behind the place they had advanced to, and digging themselves in for the night prepared to resist any offensive on the part of the enemy. Beyond very heavy firing, which rendered the bringing in of the wounded a matter of great difficulty, however, nothing of that nature occurred, though the situation was anything but a pleasant one, for the firing was kept up all night, the weather was bitterly cold and showery, and the food consisted of a few biscuits with some bully beef for breakfast. Captain B Buss and Lt's Hon GJ Goschen and WH Winch later died of their wounds. “

On 6 June 1928 the New Zealand Evening Post carried the following report from their London correspondent:

LONDON, 18th April.
Viscount Goschen, Governor of Madras, who is a member of Toc H, has presented the Madras Lamp of Maintenance to be dedicated to the memory of his son, George J. Goschen, of Eton and Christ Church, who joined the 5th Battalion of the Buffs in August, 1914. Young Goschen was wounded twice on 7th January, 1916, at the Battle of Sheik Sa’ad, and was mentioned in dispatches for gallantry in the same action. He died of his wounds at Amara on 19th January in the same year. This will make the second Lamp of Remembrance to be presented to Madras, and the Toc H group it will form will be the ninth in India. One hundred and fifty-five Lamps of Remembrance have now been presented, and several more are pending. The cost of the presentation of a Lamp is ten guineas, and the presentation of a Lamp to a group is a sign that, not alone in-numbers but in the accomplishment of good work, the group is worthy of the honour.

Amara was occupied by the Mesopotamian Expeditionary Force on 3 June 1915 and it immediately became a hospital centre. The accommodation for medical units on both banks of the Tigris was greatly increased during 1916 and in April 1917, seven general hospitals and some smaller units were stationed there. Amara War Cemetery contains 4,621 burials of the First World War, more than 3,000 of which were brought into the cemetery after the Armistice. 925 of the graves are unidentified. In 1933, all of the headstones were removed from this cemetery when it was discovered that salts in the soil were causing them to deteriorate. Instead a screen wall was erected with the names of those buried in the cemetery engraved upon it. Plot XXV is a Collective Grave, the individual burial places within this are not known. There are also seven non-war graves in the cemetery.

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