James Edwin West of Ridgeway Road, Redhill, Surrey was born on 11 December 1896, the son of Charles James West, and attended Uckfield Grammar School in Sussex. He enrolled at Harper Adams on 9 October 1913 with plans to study for a career in farming and left in 1914.
Whilst at Harper Adams his guardian was listed as Mrs E A Wordingham of Redhill, Surrey (possibly his sister or step sister) and who provided the headstone inscription “Greater Love Hath no Man”
He served with the 5th Bn., Royal Sussex Regiment, Service Number TF/3411, and died on 24 August 1916, age 19, barely two years after leaving Harper Adams.
His remains were moved to at Ovillers Military Cemetery, Cemetery/memorial reference: IX. A. 2. on 19 January 1920.
Ovillers Military Cemetery was used as a battle cemetery behind a dressing station until March 1917, by which time it contained 143 graves, about half the present Plot I.
The cemetery was increased after the Armistice when Commonwealth and French graves where brought in, mainly from the battlefields of Pozieres, Ovillers, La Boisselle and Contalmaison.