William Thomas Wash

Photo by Martin Harvey - 2007

William enlisted in November 1914 at their H.Q. in St. Mary's Street in Huntingdon.  He was allocated the number 1031 and served in the 2/1st + 1/1st Battalions.  When he enlisted in the HCB he gave his residence as in Colchester and his parents were John Henry & Jane of 2 Stanwell Street, Colchester.

He was one of a large number of men from the Reserve Bat. [2/1st] who volunteered for active service. They marched through Huntingdon behind their band on the Saturday (before 23 December 1914), and departed from the station in additional coaches that were attached to the 10.06 train. No destination was given for the train or the men of the Reserve Battalion. The report was in the Huntingdonshire Post dated 23 Dec. 1914.

He transferred into the Bedfordshire Regiment when he went to France.  One, unverified, newspaper report indicates that he was also in the Army Cycle Corps.

He died of wounds in France on the 1st September 1916.

His grave [VIII-B-170] is in the Boulogne Eastern Cemetery Pas de Calais France.  The grave is not the normal vertical CWGC stone, but laid directly on the ground as the ground on which it stands is unstable.  It should also be noted that it contains the 'Rampant Stag' badge of the unit - even though he was not in that unit when he died.

Many thanks for Martin Harvey who went to the trouble of visiting the cemetery and taking this photo of the grave.

If you can help with any data on this Huntingdonshire Cyclist please contact me at huntscycles@btinternet.com

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. . Martyn Smith