Thame Remembers Lieutenant Duncan Haldane Ostrehan
Lieutenant Duncan Haldane Ostrehan was the eldest son of John Elliot Duncan Ostrehan and Alice Rebecca Ostrehan of Bank House, Cornmarket, Thame where his father was the Bank Manager from 1895 to 1920.
He was born on 11th March 1891 and baptised at St Peter & St Paul’s Church, Worminghall, Bucks on 12th May 1891.
Duncan was studying agriculture in Cumberland in 1911, and in 1913 he was playing rugby for Vale of Lune RFU club. Duncan, and his younger brother were both privates in the 3rd County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters), a territorial regiment, when they received commissions as Second Lieutenants on 23rd November 1914 with the 1/4th Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, a territorial battalion which had been raised in Preston in August.
The battalion landed in Boulogne in early May 1915, but Duncan and Rodney didn’t join them until after the battalions heavy losses in the action at Givenchy on the 15th/16th June. In 1916, the battalion took part in a number of actions during the Battle of the Somme.
On the 31st July 1917, Duncan, by then a full Lieutenant, was posted as wounded and missing in action whilst in command of D Company during the Battle of Messines, near Ypres. His Colonel reported that he had been gallantly leading his company all day but towards evening they had to fall back a little owing to the strength of the enemy in numbers and it was then that he became missing.
Duncan was one of 9 officers and 44 other ranks of the battalion killed that day with a further 267 posted as wounded or missing.
He has no known grave and so is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial in Ypres, Belgium. In Thame he is remembered on the town war memorial and on the All Saints Church and Lord Williams’s School memorial boards.
The Thame Remembers Cross was delivered to Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Belgium
30th October 2015
by David & Jenny Dodds