LIEUTENANT ARTHUR THEODORE STEPHENSON
THE KING'S (LIVERPOOL REGIMENT)
28TH JUNE 1917 AGE 31
BURIED: GOMMECOURT WOOD NEW CEMETERY, FRANCE
This is such a specific inscription that it is a shame I haven't been able to find out any more details.
Stephenson served with the 1/7th Battalion The King's (Liverpool Regiment) but their war diary doesn't cover June 1916, or if it does the online diary doesn't. The 1/7th were part of the 55th Division and the divisional war diary does exist. This records: "28 June 1916 Raids on German trenches". The following appendices are full of the exact detailed plans for the raids, which conclude with a "Special Order of the Day by Major General HS Jeudwine CB, Commanding 55th (West Lancashire) Division published on 29 June:
"Yesterday six raids on the enemy's trenches were carried out by the 2/5th Lancashire Fusiliers and the 1/4 Loyal North Lancashire Regiment of the 164th Brigade and by the 1/5th, 1/6th, 1/7th and 1/9th King's Liverpool Regiments of the 165th Infantry Brigade assisted by detachments of the Royal Engineers. These raids were carried out in daylight, in unaccustomed and very difficult circumstances, and in the face of very determined opposition. In spite of these obstacles the results aimed at were successfully obtained and great damage and loss inflicted on the enemy. The gallantry, devotion, and resolution shown by all ranks was beyond praise, and the Major-General Commanding is proud to be able to congratulate the West Lancashire Division on the discipline and soldierly spirit exhibited - a discipline and spirit which most seasoned troops could not have surpassed. [...] He deeply regrets the loss of those who fell, but the spirit they showed will have its effect on the enemy. When the opportunity comes of avenging their deaths the Major-General Commanding is confident that the Division will not forget them."
Arthur Stephenson was the son of the Revd Robert Stephenson and his wife Philippa. He joined the army soon after the outbreak of war and was in France in on 6 June 1915. Seven days after his death the Liverpool Post & Mercury carried the following announcement:
"Official intimation has also been received that Lieutenant Theordore Stephenson, 7th King's (Liverpool Regiment) is reported missing, believed killed. He was the son of the late Rev. Robert Stephenson, who for over 30 years was vicar of St Jame's, Birkdale. He possessed marked ability as a pianist and frequently gave classical recitals at Southport."