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Norman Allatt was born on 7 December 1894 in Dewsbury, Yorkshire, England. He was the third child of Fred and Anne (née Hirst) Allatt. In 1906, when he was fourteen, the family immigrated to Toronto. In the 1911 census, Norman Allatt is listed as a shoe (machine) operator in a factory.
In January 1915 Allatt voluntarily joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force and was posted to the Canadian Exhibition grounds in Toronto to begin his training. His diary of 1915 documents his sailing overseas in August 1915, aboard the R.M.S. Hesperian en route to Plymouth from Montreal. In October 1915, Allatt departed for France and was assigned to the 14th battalion, Royal Montreal Regiment. During the war he was a sniper. When the war ended, the Royal Military Regiment was stationed in north-west France in the vicinity of Valciennes, near the Belgian border. The regiment sailed from Liverpool in April 1919 for Halifax.
Allatt returned home to live with his parents and took up his pre-war job as a shoe machine operator. He married Gertrude Benford in 1920. In 1922 he was employed by the Robert Simpson Company in Toronto. In 1923 the family moved to Detroit where Allatt worked at several jobs, until the Second World War, when he sold his retail business and became a stock keeper of an insurance company. He died in 1976.
For further biographical history see the document prepared by his nephews, Doug, Bob and David Allatt, Sepember 2009 and copy of Allatt’s attestation papers.