James Evans was born at Whiston Potteries in 1880. He was the third of five sons born to Edward and Elizabeth Evans. By 1911, he was married to Ada and working as a gardener for Mr Pilkington, living at Briars Hey Lodge, Mill Lane, Rainhill.
He received notice and enlisted at the Recruiting Office, St Helens Town Hall on 26th November 1915 aged 35. The next day he was sent to the army reserves and was mobilised on 5th June 1916. He was then posted to the Royal Garrison Artillery as Gunner 97527. On 28th March 1917 he joined the B.E.F. as part of 287 Siege Artillery and died from wounds received in action on 29th June 1917.
He is buried in Belgian Battery Corner Cemetery, 2km south-west of Ypres. This was used by 8 Division after the Battle of Messines for burials from a nearby cottage which was used as a dressing station. In this cemetery, there are many graves of soldiers from artillery units which had their gun sites nearby.
Siege Battalions were equipped with heavy howitzers, sending large calibre high explosive shells in high trajectory plunging fire. Usual armaments were 6 inch, 8 inch and 9.2 inch howitzers. Siege Battalions were often employed in destroying or neutralizing enemy artillery as well as putting destructive fire on strongpoints, stores, roads, railways behind enemy lines.
Medal entitlement: - British War and Victory Medals.
Source: - St. Helens Rolls of Honour