James Henry Leake
Rifleman, 16th Battalion (Queens Westminster Rifles) London Regiment
James Henry Leake was a student at Alleyn’s until 1907. During this time, he lived at 299 Friern Road, East Dulwich with his parents, his two brothers and his two sisters. After leaving school, James found work as a clerk and continued in this line of work until 1915 when the outbreak of the First World War prompted him to enlist in the British Expeditionary Force. After being attested, James joined the London Regiment as part of the 16th Battalion (Queens Westminster Rifles). He served overseas with the 16th as a Rifleman on both the Eastern and Western Front, seeing action in France from June 1916 until November 1916, before being deployed to Salonika and later Egypt in 1917. James took part in a number of major British operations including the Battle of the Somme in July 1916, the Battle of the Langemarck in August 1918 and the Cambrai operations in November 1918.
James survived the war and was demobilised on 4th March 1919 after returning to England. For his wartime service he was awarded the British War and Victory Medal.