The Butterworths, whose family home was a 27 Green Street, Bulk, lost four sons, more than any other Lancaster family. The first brother killed was William who lived at 15 Albion Street with his wife Margaret, round the corner from Green Street. He died on the 18th October 1914. Next was Christoper, who lived at 49 Earl Street, Skerton with his wife, also Margaret. He was killed on the 8th May 1915 at Frezenburg during the Second Battle of Ypres. 18 other Lancastrians were killed that day making it the equal worst day of the War for the town. Three months later, on the 8th August Hugh was killed. He was only 19. These losses clearly took their toll on the family, on the 12th August 1916 the Lancaster Guardian reported that James Butterworth, the father, had “died from debility, caused by having three sons killed and two severely wounded in the war.” Sadly, he was not the last. On the 23rd June 1917 a final brother, John, died. He may have been one of the “severely wounded” brothers as he died in hospital and is buried in Lancaster Cemetery.
This video shows an interview with Ian Birnie, a descendant of the Butterworth family, taken at Lancaster University in 2016.