Lieutenant, 7th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment.

Died of wounds 10th July 1916, age 21.

Buried in Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, France.

Former student of commerce.



Leslie was born in 1894 at Monton, the son of John Parker Melbourne, a commission agent, & his wife Esther of Eccles. He was educated at Manchester Grammar School, matriculated at an early age and proceeded to Manchester University in 1912 to study for the Consular Service. He distinguished himself in the gymnasium and won a place in the team. He also played Rugby Football for the Manchester Club in for two seasons 1911-1913 and was capped for the University in 1913-14.

When war broke out Leslie was studying in Paris and immediately applied for a commission. Eager to be of service he joined the University and Public Schools Battalion as a private. Before long he was given a choice of a commission with a new Salford unit which was being formed or the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. He chose the latter believing it would get him to the front sooner and in November 1914 was gazetted as a 2nd Lieutenant. In July 1915 he went to France and was appointed as Bomb Officer shortly before Christmas. In 1916 he was promoted to Lieutenant for “good reconnoitring in enemy line” and took part in the advance on La Boiselle on 4th July 1916. While leading a bombing squad he was shot through the face and neck by a sniper. He was carried to the rear, telling his captain on the way that he would be back in 10 minutes. He died of his wounds six days later at No. 7 Stationary Hospital, Bologne. His headstone is engraved with a line from a hymn for the fallen based on a poem by Sir John Stanhope Arkwright: “Your memory hallowed in the land you loved”.

The Manchester University Roll of Service (1922) and Register of Graduates 1851-1958 both record that Leslie was awarded his Bachelor of Commerce in 1916. At the time of his death his brother was a captain in the Army Service Corps in Colchester.

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