The accused then addressed the court saying:
Captain Scully 2nd Bn MANCHESTER REGT could speak for my conduct in the trenches for nearly 12 months.
Prosecutor Capt. TJ Kelly 18th Manchester Regt. being duly sworn states:
I produce the accompanying conduct sheet of the accused Pte. Hunt.
(Signed) R.K Walsh Lt. Col
Etaples 1.8.16 Absent from parading with a draft for the front at 3.45pm till Tattoo
Punishment: 28 days F.P No.1
O.M.A.S 16.8.16 Being in BETHUNE without a pass
Absent from Billets without permission
19.8.16 Being absent from parade at 3pm
Absent from Billets from 3pm to 6pm
Punishment: 14 Days F.P No.1
O.M.A.S 24.8.16 When on active service disobeying in such a manner as to show a wilful defiance of authority a lawful command given personally by his superior officer in the execution of his office.
Punishment: 1 Years Hard Labour
Remission: Commuted to 3 months F.P No.1 by G.O.C 30th Div.
Further remission: Remitted to 9 days of F.P by 1st Army Comm. (10/9/16)
Statement from the C.O of 18/Manchester Regiment
90th Infantry Brigade
I enclose herewith a statement regarding the Character of No. 1957 Private Hunt.
From my own personal knowledge of the accused I am of opinion that he deliberately absented himself from his company in the trenches with the intention of avoiding the particular service involved.
This man joined the 18th Battn. Manchester Regt with a draft on August 4th 1916. He is a regular soldier (special reserve) and states that he was previously with the 2nd Manchester Regiment and has been two years in France. His general behaviour whilst with the battn under my command has been unsatisfactory. He had only been in action with his Coy once and as a consequence the present charge was proposed against him.
H B Williams Lt. Col
Commanding 18th Manch. R
November 2nd 1916
Name of alleged offender: No. 1957 Private W. Hunt, 18th Battalion, Manchester Regt.
Offence Charged: Section 12 (1a) Army Act “Where on Active Service Deserting his Majesty’s Service”
Plea: Not Guilty
Finding, and if convicted, Sentence: Guilty. To suffer death by being shot.
(Signed) JH Lloyd
Comm. 90th Inf. Brigade
1. I should recommend that the sentence be Commuted and carried out when commuted.
2. The character of the accused as a fighting man has not been at all satisfactory.
3. The general state of discipline of the Battn. has been good.
4. Comm. Officers opinion attached.
5. There is no circumstance which requires the sentence penalty to be inflicted. The man is young, but his presence in the ranks of new reinforcements is not all desirable.
Commander 90th Inf Bde
Now follows a series within the file confirming the sentence as imposed by the FGCM
Confidential Headquarters VII Corps “A”
Recommended that the sentence be carried out as the accused appeared to have deliberately absconded himself from the firing line.
(Signed) J Shea Major General Commanding 30th Division 3.11.16
Third Army ‘A’ forwarded
I agree with the recommendation of the G.O.C 30th Div
(Signed) [illegible] Major General Comm. VII Corps 4.11.16
Third Army C.M 5002
The Adjutant General,
I recommend that his sentence of death be carried out.
(Signed) Edmund Allenby
Commanding Third Army
D. Haig. Gen
10 Nov 16
Adjutant General’s Branch
Please Do Not Detach.
In confirmation of my telegram No. A(b) 1975 of today. Please note that the C. in C. has confirmed the sentence in the case of No. 1957, Pte W. Hunt, 18th Battalion Manchester Regiment.
Please return the proceedings direct to this office after promulgation.
I certify that No. 1957, Private W. Hunt of the 18th Battalion, The Manchester Regiment, was executed by shooting at 6.37am on 14th November 1916 at place appointed . Death was instantaneous.
(Signed) G.C Robinson
Temp Attached 18th Manchester Regt.
I certify that the sentence of Death awarded by F.G.C.M on No. 1957 Private W. Hunt, 18th Bn. Manchester Regiment, and confirmed by the Commander-in-Chief on the 10th November, 1916, was duly executed at 6.37am today in my presence
Assistant Provost Marshal,
14th November 1916.