Capt. G.D.P. Eykyn

FIRST NAMES: Gilbert Davidson Pitt

UNIT: 4th Yorkshire Regiment

STATUS: Killed in Action

DATE OF DEATH: 23rd April 1915


AGE: 34

Captain Eykyn was born in Bombay, India, on 22nd April 1881 and was the only son of the Late Reverend Pitt Eykyn and Mrs Eykyn, of 82 Prince of Wales Mansions, Battersea Park, London. He was married on 28th November 1902 to his wife Emily Constance and they had one son, Duncan Arthur, who was born on 11th August 1906. They lived at "The Cottage" Northallerton, though after the War his wife and son moved to Fir Lodge, in South Parade, Northallerton.

He was a professional soldier, having served first of all with the 3rd Loyal North Lancashire Regiment with whom he obtained his commission in 1899. He then joined the 4th Manchester Battalion in 1901.He served with the Manchesters during the Boer War where he was awarded the Queens Medal with 3 clasps ; "Cape Colony", "Wittenbergen", and "Transvaal". In 1904 he joined the Royal Scots and on 13th February 1913 he was appointed as adjutant of 4th Yorkshire Regiment in Northallerton, shortly after which he was promoted to the rank of Captain on 26th June 1913.

He was a gifted linguist and had passed Army examinations in French, Russian and Hindustanti.

He was killed, aged 34, near St. Julien during the Second Battle of Ypres on the day after the Germans first used poison gas. The 4th Yorkshires counter attacked the advancing Germans who were exploiting the confusion which the initial gas attack had caused, to press home their attacks around the village of St. Julien, near Ypres in Belgium. They managed to hold up the German advance in this area long enough for the Allied forces to regroup and consolidate their position and thus prevented a complete German breakthrough.

The ground was fought over many times afterwards during the course of the War and Captain Eykyn's body could not be identified at the end of it. He is commemorated on the Menin Gate at Ypres.