Topic: Patrick Manning

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Patrick Manning (Service no. 23/1726) was a First World War soldier and is named on the Woolston War Memorial.

Portrait of Patrick Manning, Online Cenotaph, Auckland War Memorial Museum Sergeant Patrick Manning was the youngest son of John and Hannah Manning (née Barry), of Southbridge, Ellesmere district, in the Canterbury county of Selwyn. He was born on 15th September, 1889. Patrick had 8 siblings, including an older brother, John, who also served in the First World War (Service no. 6/3778). Unfortunately the children’s mother, Hannah, died at the age of 35. She was buried in Ellesmere Catholic Cemetery on New Year’s Eve, 1893.

Patrick attended the Sedgemere School (Ellesmere district) and passed the Fourth Educational Standard.  He was working as a farm labourer for William Morgan in the small Canterbury town of Methven (west of Ellesmere) when he enlisted in October 1915  (the Methven address, and occupation of labourer, are also listed for Patrick on the supplementary roll for Selwyn electorate, 1914). This was Patrick's second attempt to enlist. According to medical remarks on his record, Patrick Manning’s original application was deferred “some months before” due to a burn on his left ankle, which needed to heal. He was described as otherwise fit, due to training for a boxing championship. 

Patrick travelled with the New Zealand Rifle Brigade, First Battalion, and disembarked in Egypt at Suez on 8 February 1916. A month later, in Moascar, he transferred to the 2nd  Batallion, Canterbury Regiment, NZ Expeditionary Force – 12th Company. On 8 April 1916, he embarked for France from Alexandria, on the SS “Ascania”.

On 22 September 1916, during the Canterbury Regiment’s fight to gain a trench at Flers (Battle of the Somme), Patrick Manning received a gun shot wound to his right knee and was admitted to the Field Ambulance. After a short spell in the hospital at Rouen, he rejoined his unit, which was involved in the Battle of Messines, and operations at La Basse Ville. In November 1916, he was promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal, followed by promotion to rank of Sergeant in September 1917. Later that month he had a week’s leave in Paris, before rejoining his unit in Belgium on 22 September, 1917.

Sergeant Manning belonged to the 2nd Canterbury Battalion's 12th Company, which, along with the Battalion's  2nd Company, was placed in reserve to support the Otago Brigade’s assault on Bellevue Spur (Battle for Passchendaele). They dug in on nearby Gravenstafel Spur on the night of 11th October, 1917, in terrible weather. At 5:25am on the 12th, a barrage of machine gun fire rained down on the leading troops from Otago and by 6am, the 2nd and 12th companies of the 2nd Canterbury Battalion were called up from their reserve positions. Patrick was killed in action on 12 October 1917, by a shell fired from a German pillbox at Waterloo farm, and was buried there. The date of his death was a black day for New Zealand troops, which sustained terrible casualties in the offensive. 

Patrick Manning is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium. His name appears on Panel 2, in the New Zealand apse of the Memorial. These panels are reserved for individuals whose resting place is unknown, or unable to be marked as a grave site. 

Patrick was awarded the Victory Medal and the British War Medal. The medals were delivered to his sister, Mrs Mary Carey, who provides the Woolston connection. Mary Manning married David Carey (a labourer) in 1909 (BDM Historical Records website). Mary was registered as Patrick Manning’s next of kin, and her address, at 22 Princes Street, Woolston, appears on Patrick’s army record (Princes Street was re-named Rutherford Street in 1948). Electoral records show that Mary Carey lived in Woolston for much of her married and widowed life (her husband died in 1924), despite a Colenso Street, Sumner, address that is recorded for Mary in some sections of Patrick Manning's war record.  In the 1922 electoral roll, Mary and David Carey were both registered to vote in the Lyttelton electorate at the address of 29 Victoria Terrace, Woolston (Victoria Terrace, Woolston, was renamed Connal Street in1948), but after her husband's death, the 1925 roll for Christchurch East show a move back to Princes Street, this time at number 33. Mary and David Carey are buried in Linwood Cemetery. 

Sources, References, and other reading:


Image of Patrick Manning sourced from: Online Cenotaph, He toa taumata rau, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Tāmaki Paenga Hira - Portrait, Auckland Weekly News 1918 

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Patrick Manning

First Names:Patrick
Last Name:Manning
Place of Birth:Southbridge