Topic: George Leonard Lindsay

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George Leonard Lindsay (Service No. 6/84) was a First World War soldier with links to the Waltham area.

George Leonard LindsayGeorge Leonard Lindsay was born in Avonside, Christchurch on the 21st of February 1892. He was the eldest son of George and Ellen Lindsay who resided at 46 Matheson's Road in Linwood. George was educated at the Waltham School.

George had been involved with farming in Rangiora for a number of years but just prior to enlisting he had owned a touring car which he ran in the taxi business. He had been a member of the Touring Car Association.

In his service records he is described as being 5 foot, 9 3/4 inches tall with grey eyes, dark hair and one small  tattoo on his left forearm. He enlisted in the New Zealand Expeditionary Forces in August of 1914 at the very start of the European conflict.

He joined the Canterbury Infantry Battalion and sailed from Lyttelton to Europe via Egypt, arriving in December 1914. According to The Press  (14 June 1915 ) whilst on the voyage from New Zealand to Egypt, George and some companions threw overboard a bottle containing a message which was picked up by a resident of Portland, Victoria, on 2 January 1915. The message read as follows:

H.M.N.Z.T. No. 4. Tahiti. N.Z. Expeditionary Force, Hobart, 21st October, 1914. 1st (Canterbury) Regiment.  A Company.  Anyone finding this please communicate with the undersigned: -
"Though hills and waters divide us, And you I cannot see. Remember that the writer thinks The nicest things of thee. 
George Lindsay. 48 Matheson's road, Christchurch; Sydney Rowe, Sumner; H. Townsend, Christchurch; R. Fitchett, Sumner.

His battalion fought north towards the Turkish forces. He joined the other allied countries who, in March 1915 launched what came to be an ill-fated attack. The "Allies" were hoping to take control of the strategically vital straight between Europe and Asia, the Dardanelles in North-Western Turkey.

Private Lindsay made the ultimate sacrifice for his country and was killed in action on the 8th of May 1915. The failure of the campaign at the Dardanelles, along with the campaign that followed later that year in Gallipoli, resulted in heavy casualties (approximately 205,000 for the British Empire and 47,000 for the French, there were also 250,000 Turkish casualties), and was a serious blow to the reputation of the Allied war command, including that of Winston Churchill, the British First Lord of the Admiralty, who had long been a proponent of an aggressive naval assault against Turkey at the Dardanelles.  

George had been a member of the Linwood Congregational Church and after his death the Reverend H.A Job recalled George as being "of a quiet and inoffensive nature, and not what is commonly the fighting type".

George is remembered on the Twelve Tree Copse (New Zealand) Memorial, Twelve Tree Copse Cemetery, Helles, Turkey, and on the Waltham Memorial Gates.


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George Leonard Lindsay

First Names:George Leonard
Last Name:Lindsay
Place of Birth:Christchurch