Raymond Bishop was born in Quinton, Gloucestershire, in 1895, the son of George and Jane Bishop (nee Neale). By 1901, the family had moved to Wolverhampton and were living at 5 Manlove Street. In 1911, they were at 36 Burleigh Road, by which stage Raymond had become an assistant to a milk Dealer.
Raymond signed up with the 1/7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment (number 25046) in 1915. He was killed on 27 August 1917, aged just 22. He is featured on the panel of Beckminster Methodist Church in Penn Fields, and the Wolverhampton War Memorials site has the following further information about his death:
On the previous day Raymond’s Company, who were taking part in a precursor to the notorious Battle of Passchendaele, were near the village of St Julien and had moved into outposts in front of their trenches in readiness to attack a German strongpoint known as Springfield Farm, a strategic point on the St Julien – Zonnebeke Road which had already changed hands five times in the previous 48 hours. An idea of the prevailing conditions can be gained from a letter that one of the officers wrote to his mother; “…… The ground was a mass of shell holes and the mud was real bad. To give you one instance of what the mud is really like, one of our pack ponies got stuck and then gradually sank lower and lower until he disappeared. But just before his head went under, the transport officer shot him with a revolver.”
Heavy rain during the night made the ground even more difficult and when they eventually attacked, after having spent several hours in waterlogged shell-holes, they found the ground almost impassable and their attack floundered in the mud. 30 of Raymond’s comrades died with him that day.