Horsfield, Kenneth

Date of birth:
September 30th, 1920 (Hyde/Cheshire, United Kingdom)
Date of death:
August 18th, 1944 (Brindisi, Italy)
Buried on:
Commonwealth War Cemetery Bari
Plot: XI. Row: E. Grave: 27.
Service number:
British (1801-present, Kingdom)


Kenneth Horsfield was born on 30th September 1920 in Hyde, Cheshire as son of John Horsfield and Annie Horsfield-Dobb. His brother Alan was born on 1st January 1922. In May 1924 the family moved to Kenlan. Father died on 29th January 1926 and his mother and the two boys moved back to Hyde. As a young boy, Kenneth was an active scout member. He attended school in Leigh Street and later became a butcher's apprentice.

On 2nd May 1939, Kenneth joined the Amry with the 9th Battalion, Manchester Regiment in Ashton under Lyne. On 9th April 1940 he attended the Senior Officers School at Erlestoke Park, which was attached to the 57th Battalion Heavy Tank Regiment. Next on 21st May he was still at the school but it was not attached to the Tank Regiment.. On 18th September 1941 he went back to the Manchester Regiment, with the 24 Machine Gun Training Centre at Chester. Already on 3rd October he was placed with the STS 61 where he stayed until 8th August 1942 where they would be embarked for Egypt.
Eight weeks before that he married with Marion Beresford.
On 18th August 1944 he was killed.

It is still uncertain what his service was between the embarkement to Egypt and his death in Italy. As an SOE trained soldier he could have been active in Derna, Libia and off course Italy.

His place of death is yet uncertain. Looking at the records on the awarding of the George Cross this should be Bari. The Illustrated London News of 7th April 1945 states however Brindisi as place of death.

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Second World War (1939-1945)
3rd Squadron, 2nd SAS Regiment, Special Air Service (SAS), Army Air Corps, British Army
Awarded on:
March 23rd, 1945
"Corporal Horsfield was employed in the demolition area at Bari, Italy, when, on 18th August 1944, an ammunition explosion occurred. Horsfield made the most gallant attempts to save a man who was trapped in the rubble and continued his efforts until a second explosion caused severe injuries from which he subsequently died. "

Awarded posthumously.
George Cross


  • Photo 1: Familie
  • Photo: Family
  • - George Cross Database
    - Special Forces Roll of Honor
    - Location of death: Illustrated London News of 7th April 1945
    - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 20th March 1945, Issue 36995, dated 23rd March 1945