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Robert Mackay cap badgeGunner Robert Mackay

Royal Garrison Artillery 281st Siege Battery
Service No: 145372

Robert Mackay grave





Personal details

Family Information

Son of Robert and Jane M Mackay of Annewood, Blairhill, Coatbridge. Robert's only brother was studying for his commission at the time of his death. From the 1901 Census - Address - 5a Albany St, Coatbridge - Robert McKay aged 40, Jane McKay aged 40, Robert McKay aged 6, Christina McKay aged 3, Jane McKay aged 9 months, servant Helen Mersile aged 16. Robert's Pension was awarded to his sister Christina of 2 Albany St, Coatbridge and his mother Jane on the 14/05/1918.

Born / Resided

Coatbridge / 2 Albany St, Coatbridge.


Killed in Action on the 17/08/1917 by an enemy shell exploding next to his gun


Coatbridge /03/1917


Clerk in the Summerlee Works.



Buried / Remembered

Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery (VIII. E. 3), West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

Cemetery / Memorial Information

For much of the First World War, Vlamertinghe (now Vlamertinge) was just outside the normal range of German shell fire and the village was used both by artillery units and field ambulances. Burials were made in the original Military Cemetery until June 1917, when the New Military Cemetery was begun in anticipation of the Allied offensive launched on this part of the front in July. Although the cemetery continued in use until October 1918, most of the burials are from July to December 1917. The cemetery now contains 1,812 Commonwealth burials of the First World War.

Additional Information

Robert was killed along with a comrade when an enemy shell exploded beside his gun. Several others were severely wounded. He is buried next to 3 of his comrades at Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery. Siege Batteries of the Royal Garrison Artillery were equipped with heavy howitzers, sending large calibre high explosive shells in high trajectory, plunging fire. The usual armaments were 6 inch, 8 inch and 9.2 inch howitzers, although some had huge railway- or road-mounted 12 inch howitzers. As British artillery tactics developed, the Siege Batteries were most often employed in destroying or neutralising the enemy artillery, as well as putting destructive fire down on strongpoints, dumps, store, roads and railways behind enemy lines. Robert is listed as McKAY on the Memorial and the 1901 Census. He is also remembered on the Coatbridge Technical College and Dunbeth Parish Church Rolls of Honour (see photos) and in the St Augustine's Parish (book) Roll of Honour. See photos for Robert's Medal Index Card, his Newspaper clippings x 2, his Army Register of Soldiers Effects, his Service Medal and Award Rolls, his CWGC Grave Registration x 2, his Headstone Report, another photo of Robert's Grave, Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery, the Royal Garrison Artillery Cap Badge and Robert's Pension Records x 2.

Robert Mackay Medal Index CardRobert Mackay newspaper clippingRobert Mackay newspaper clippingRobert Mackay remembered at homeRobert Mackay remembered at homeRobert Mackay remembered at homeRobert Mackay remembered at homeRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photoRobert Mackay additional photo

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