6:10am Thursday 9th January 2014
‘A LION of England’ who gave his life in the line of duty is to have a road named after him.
Kingsman Jamie Hancock was just 19 when he died in 2006 – weeks after he arrived in Basra, Iraq, with the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment.
A road, being built off Thomas Street in Hindley Green as part of a new housing estate, will be named Hancock Close in his honour.
Jamie’s father Eddie said: “It is a nice gesture from the ward councillors who proposed it and the council for approving it.
“No one wants to see their 19-year-old son or daughter’s name on a memorial but it is touching.
“Since he died, Jamie’s picture has been alongside another soldier who was killed in Afghanistan in 2007 on Atherton’s war memorial and it is so well looked after by the those who care.
“I hope the residents of the estate realise how unique this is and look after it as well.
“The plaque will read that Jamie was a local lad because that is exactly what he was. It will also bear the mark of Jamie’s regiment and I hope it will be nice for all the ex-servicemen around here to see.”
The former Hesketh Fletcher High School pupil in Atherton died while on sentry duty when the base he was at in central Basra came under fire.
From page one Jamie was wearing body armour, but a single bullet entered the armhole of the sleeveless protector.
Lord Peter Smith, leader of Wigan Council, said: “By all accounts, Jamie was an outstanding young man cruelly taken from his family at far too young an age. I hope seeing this tribute so close to where they live will be a source of pride and comfort for those Jamie left behind.”
Jamie had lived in Hindley Green for most of his life until he joined the army at 18. At the time of his death, his Company Commander described him as ‘an energetic and enthusiastic individual who lived for the army and had a very promising career ahead of him’.
A memorial stone dedicated to Kingsman Hancock will be unveiled at a ceremony with a bugler playing The Last Post when construction of the new homes is complete in March. The inscription on the stone will pay tribute to Jamie and will describe him as ‘a lion of England’.
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