There are many war memorials around the country which, when being researched, record details of men and women who are not commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC), even though they may have died of wounds or illness brought about by their service during World War One. Among all of these names, it is quite often impossible to positively identify a person, especially when they are not commemorated. However, with the advent of such websites as Ancestry and Find My Past, surviving service records and pension papers are now freely available to scour through which makes this research much easier.
When such papers exist, if they show a cause of death which ties in with their service, and if the death certificate matches the papers, then these uncommemorated cases can be passed onto the CWGC for them to send to the armed forces for adjudication.
Currently my database contains the details of over 3,700 Welsh men and women who fell in WW1 who are not commemorated by the CWGC. Sadly the majority of these men and women can never be commemorated due to lack of surviving records or evidence. Many of these are not eligible for commemoration due to the CWGC and MOD rules regarding date and cause of death or from a lack of evidence, but it has been my aim to attempt to get as many of these ‘forgotten’ casualties of war commemorated, by first gathering together as much evidence as I can, and then by working in conjunction with the ‘In From The Cold Project’, to attempt to get them commemorated by the CWGC. As of writing (Dec 2022), with the expert help of the In From The Cold Project, I have managed to get over 200 WW1 servicemen commemorated by the CWGC, and have also found at least three soldiers who were killed in action but not officially commemorated. Also through luck, and a lot of work, I have also managed to identify and get new headstones erected for three other Welshmen who were originally buried in unnamed graves in France.
During the course of my research for this website, and also of Welsh servicemen and women for my books, I have also come across several cases where men are incorrectly commemorated by the CWGC, either on the wrong memorial, or by the wrong name or date of death, and as a result have researched these omissions in order to get the CWGC to properly commemorate these men.
Quite often it is impossible to locate the burial place of these men, so if accepted for commemoration, they are added to the United Kingdom Book of Remembrance at Maidenhead. In the cases where their graves are located, then the CWGC will produce and install one of their distinctive white Portland Stone headstones. Unfortunately many eligible men and women will never be commemorated, as there is insufficient evidence to enable it. Some of these have some surviving evidence, but not quite enough to totally convince the adjudication board that they were casualties of war, so they are then rejected. On this page of the website I will show the details of those rejected cases.
The Great War, 1914-1918. Rejected cases.
Francis George Banwell, Private, 20815, Welsh Regiment. Francis (known as George) was born at Aberavon in 1895, the son of Francis and Julia Banwell. The family later resided at 15, High Street, Pontarddulais, where George worked as a labourer in the tinworks. George enlisted locally into the 15th Battalion, Welsh Regiment, which was known as the Carmarthen Pals Battalion, which moved to France in December 1915 attached to 114 Brigade, 38th (Welsh) Division. George would have fought with the battalion at Mametz Wood in July 1916, and also during the famous capture of Pilckem Ridge in July/ August 1917. He survived the war, and was discharged from the army on 3 May 1919. George only enjoyed six months of peace, being taken ill with pneumonia, he died at home on 5 November 1919, aged 24, his war service having obviously weakened him. The memorial misleadingly shows Frank Banwell, which is the name his brother was known by, whilst Francis himself was known as George! George is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
Sidney Rees Bell, Lance Corporal, 3684, Welsh Regiment. Sidney was born in 1876, the son of Rees and Ann Bell, of 3, King Street, Llandeilo. Sydney was a Tailor, and had worked at Skewen, where he married Eleanor, and the couple raised their first four children there before returning to Llandeilo in 1910, moving into 3, Brynawel Terrace. Sidney served with the 4th Welsh early in the war, later transferring into the Royal Welsh Fusiliers. No more is known of Sydney’s time at war, but he died at 2, Wellfield Terrace, Llandeilo due to pulmonary tuberculosis and exhaustion, which had been brought on by his war service, on 12 February 1920, aged 44. Sidney is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
Eliezor Bishop Bowen, Private, 201423, Welsh Regiment. Eliezor was born in 1885, the son of David and Mary Bowen, of 5, Club House, Felinfoel. He worked as a Collier prior to the war, then served during the war with the 4th Battalion, Welsh Regiment. Eliezor survived the war, returning to live with his brother-in law and sister, John and Catherine Jenkins, at Bryngwili, Pontyberem. Eliezor had suffered because of his wartime service, dying of Chronic Otorrhoea on 7 May 1920, aged 35. Eliezor is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
Sydney Hodson Brown, Private, Welsh Regiment. Sydney (also spelt Sidney) was born at St. Mary’s, Pembroke on 12 March 1886, the Son of Thomas and Ellen Brown, of Kingsword House. He had served an apprenticeship with the GWR as a Fitter and Turner at Swindon prior to the war, before enlisting into the Welsh Regiment. Sydney was hospitalised at Carmarthen after the war. He died at Carmarthen Infirmary of pulmonary tuberculosis on 20 August 1919, aged 33. Sydney is buried at Pembroke (Llanion) Cemetery. Sydney is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
Albert Victor Carman, Able Seaman, Bristol Z/468, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve. Albert was born at Winchester in 1898, the son of William and Elizabeth Carman. The family had moved to Pontardulais prior to 1906, and resided at 36, Ty-ny-bone Road, Pontardulais. Albert worked as a Tinworker prior to the war, and enlisted on 29 December 1914 into the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, giving his date of birth as 31 December 1896, as he was otherwise too young. He was posted to Drake Battalion, joining them at Gallipoli on 17 July 1915. Albert was invalided to Britain suffering from conjunctivitis in October 1915, and was hospitalised at the Royal Naval Hospital Haslar, suffering with Hypermetropic Astigmatism. He married Lizzie Rees at Carmarthen early in 1918. It is not known if Albert went on to serve in France, but he died of influenza on 1 June 1920. Albert is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
James Ernest Codd, Sergeant, 2297, Welsh Regiment. James was born at Haverfordwest in 1871, the son of William Evans Codd and Martha Codd. He married Mary Ann Lewis at Haverfordwest on 12 August 1896, and the couple resided at 9, North Gate Terrace, Haverfordwest, where James worked as a Yeast Merchant. Between 12 March 1899 until 31 March 1908, James also served with the 1st Volunteer Battalion, Welsh Regiment, which was renumbered as the 4th Battalion, Welsh Regiment on 13 April 1908, becoming the local Territorial unit. James attended the annual camp several times over the coming years, and at the outbreak of the Great War was embodied for service with ‘A’ Company, 4th Welsh at Haverfordwest. James was by now a Sergeant, and remained on Home Service with the 2/4th Welsh, assisting with the training of new recruits for the front line 1/4th Welsh. James was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 30 September 1916 after becoming ill with bronchial asthma and a hernia. He died on 27 January 1917 at Haverfordwest, aged 45, and is possibly buried at St. Martins Churchyard, Haverfordwest. James is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his condition was not linked to his war service.
Charles Collier, Private, 20536, Welsh Regiment. Charles was born in 1876, the son of Thomas Collier and Jennet Collier (nee Mason), of Cardiff. He married Margaret Ellen Sullivan at Cardiff Registry Office on 17 October 1896 and the couple set up home at 38, Gray Street, Canton. Charles had worked as a mason for many years, prior to enlisting into the 3rd Battalion, Welsh Regiment at Cardiff on 31 August 1914 under the name of Charles Mason. Due to his age, Charles was then attached to the 3/5th Battalion, Welsh Regiment, but on 10 December was discharged from the battalion as medically unfit. Undeterred, Charles re-enlisted into the 15th Battalion, Welsh Regiment on 9 March 1915. The battalion, known as the Carmarthenshire Battalion, was at Rhyl, attached to the 43rd (Welsh) Division, and Charles joined up with his new unit soon afterwards. Within weeks, Charles became ill and on 26 April 1915 he was once again discharged from the army as medically unfit, having been diagnosed as suffering from tuberculosis. He returned home to his wife and six children at Cardiff, but his health rapidly got worse and Charles died of tuberculosis at Gray Street on 2 July 1915, aged 38. Although his pension papers state that his condition was aggravated by his military service, his case was sadly rejected by the CWGC in April 2023 due to a lack of evidence.
David Davies, Sapper, 790, Royal Engineers. David was the husband of Gwen Davies, of 7, Water Street, Llanelli. He was 28 years old when he enlisted into the 3/1st Welsh Field Company, Royal Engineers at Llanelli in May 1915. David was discharged from the army late in 1916 after being found unfit for military service. He died at Llanelli early in 1920, aged 33. David is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
David Davies, Private, 16539, Welsh Regiment. David was born in 1892, the son of John Davies and Catherine Davies, of Market Square, Cwmavon. He worked as a tinworker prior to enlisting into the Welsh Regiment at Cardiff on 9 October 1914 and was posted to the 9th Battalion, Welsh Regiment. The battalion had formed at Cardiff in September 1915, moving to Salisbury Plain to join 58 Brigade, 19th (Western) Division. The battalion embarked for France with the division on 18 July 1915, and the division moved to positions north of Loos in the Givenchy area, to begin trench initiation and training. The division then took part in a very costly diversionary attack here on 25 September 1915, intending to draw German attention away from the main assault at Loos. The Division remained in Flanders over the winter, in terrible conditions. David contracted appendicitis in March 1916 and was evacuated to the 9th Red Cross Hospital at Boulogne, where he was operated upon. On 12 March 1916 David was invalided back to the Eastern General Hospital in Brighton, due to his operation having weakened him, and upon his recovery he was posted to the Depot at Cardiff. He was then posted to the 12th Battalion, Welsh Regiment at Kinmel Park, just before the battalion was renamed to the 58th Training Reserve Battalion. Still struggling to regain his fitness after his operation, David was placed on the Army Reserve, before being discharged as medically unfit on 20 July 1917. He returned to Cwmavon but became weaker and was taken to Swansea Hospital, where he died of mesenteric thrombosis and an internal obstruction on 29 September 1917, aged 25. David’s case was rejected by the CWGC as there is no positive link to his death from his appendix removal.
David John Davies, Driver, A/522, Royal Army Service Corps. David was born in 1894, the son of David Davies and Mary Ann Davies, of 75, Queen’s Road, New Tredegar. The family had moved to 114, Madeline Street, Pontygwaith prior to the war. David worked as a coalminer as a young man, but left home to enlist into the Army Service Corps on 9 April 1912. He was still serving in the army when war broke out, but does not appear to have served overseas at all. David became ill during the spring of 1916 and was found to have contracted tuberculosis. He was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 6 July 1916 and returned home to his parents at Pontygwaith. He was granted a pension, as his pension card states that his condition was attributable to his war service. David married Mary Ann Coleman in the spring of 1916, but during the coming months his health worsened and he died of tuberculosis at home at 114, Madeline Street on 15 December 1919, aged 25. David’s case was rejected by the CWGC as there was not enough evidence, although the pension card and death certificate tie in together. Sadly no pension or service papers exist.
Francis John Davies, Private, 2317, Glamorgan Yeomanry. Francis was born on 22 December 1897, the son of Francis Davies and Emma Davies, of 66, Vincent Street, Swansea. He had worked as a Grocer’s Traveller prior to the war. Francis enlisted into the Glamorgan Yeomanry on 20 January 1913, so when war broke out, was mobilised with the regiment at Swansea. Following mobilisation, the Glamorgan Yeomanry joined the rest of South Wales Mounted Brigade at Bridgend before moving to Hereford, then at the end of August moved with the brigade to the Thetford area, joining the 1st Mounted Division. The division then moved to Aylsham where it remained until moving to the Cromer area in October 1915. Just prior to the 1st Mounted Division embarking for Egypt, Francis took ill, and was found to have contracted tuberculosis. He was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 11 April 1916 and returned home to Swansea. Francis died of tuberculosis at 79, Ysgol Street, Swansea on 1 June 1919, aged 21. Francis was buried with full military honours in Danygraig Cemetery, Swansea. Although his pension card states that his illness was 100% attributable to his military service, his case was rejected by the CWGC due to insufficient evidence.
Isaac Davies, Driver, 135383, Army Service Corps. Isaac was born in 1882, the son of David and Rachel Davies, of Cilsane Mill, Llangathen. He had worked as a draper for Morgan and Hayes Company at Cardiff for several years prior to the war. Isaac was initially rejected as unfit after trying to enlist into the army in August 1914, but on 29 October 1915 tried again, and was accepted to join the Army Service Corps. He trained as a driver, before embarking for France on 13 March 1916, where he was posted to a Motor Machine Gun Section as a driver. Isaac was reportedly gassed during the opening day of the Battle of the Somme, on 1 July 1916, and the roof of his dugout was later blown in by a German shell. As a result he suffered shell-shock, and was invalided home on 17 October 1916. After a short spell in hospital in Southampton, Isaac returned home to Cilsane Mill to recuperate, but died on 17 December 1916, aged 34. He was buried at St. Cathen Churchyard. Isaac’s case was recently turned down by the CWGC because the cause of death was deemed as not being related to his military service.
William Thomas Davies, Private, 3605, Welsh Regiment. William was born in 1892, the son of William Henry Davies and Susan Davies, of 7, Midland Terrace, Clydach Road, Llangyfelach. He worked as a furnaceman in a tinworks prior to the war. William enlisted into the 6th Battalion, Welsh Regiment soon after the outbreak of war, but does not appear to have served overseas. He was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 22 September 1916, due to having contracted tuberculosis. His pension card states that his illness was due to his military service. He married Mary Jane at some time after his discharge and the couple resided at 39, Sway Road, Morriston. William died of tuberculosis at Morriston on 17 August 1921, aged 29. His case was rejected by the CWGC based on the duration between discharge and death, and the evidence being inconclusive due to lack of service or medical records.
David Sutherland Downie, Private, 1771, Denbighshire Yeomanry. David was the son of George and Anne Jane Downie, of Ashton In Makerfield, and the nephew of David Owen Jones, of Regent Street, Llangollen. He enlisted into the Denbighshire Yeomanry on 28 December 1915 and on 13 August 1916 was posted to No 1 Base Depot at Rouen. Within a day he had taken ill and was hospitalised at the 39th General Hospital at Rouen. He spent four months in hospital in France before being sent back to Britain on 7 December 1916 after having been diagnosed with epilepsy. He continued to have fits after returning to Britain and died in West Derby Union Infirmary in Lancashire on 21 May 1918, aged 23. David was buried in St. John’s Cemetery, Llangollen. His case was submitted to the CWGC in November 2016 but he was rejected as the cause of his death was unrelated to his military service.
Thomas Drew, Rifleman, 350, London Regiment. Thomas was born in 1883, the son of Thomas Drew and Martha Drew (nee Hayward), of 28, North Street, Penydarren, Merthyr Tydfil. He married Jane Hopkins in 1905 and the couple set up home at 2, Cynon Place, Hirwain, near Aberdare, where Thomas worked as a coal hewer. He enlisted at Merthyr into the 5th Supernumerary Battalion, Welsh Regiment on 27 November 1914 and on 19 August 1915 was posted to the 22nd Battalion, Rifle Brigade. The battalion was known as the Wessex and Welsh Battalion, as it recruited mainly in these areas. Thomas embarked for Egypt on 22 January 1916 and served there for ten months before the battalion was transferred as part of the 28th Division to Salonika in November 1916, as part of an Anglo-French force despatched to aid the Greek Army, following the invasion of neighbouring Serbia by an Austro-Bulgarian force. Thomas served in Salonika for four months before taking ill, suffering from fits of coughing and was evacuated home to Tooting Military Hospital, where he was diagnosed as having contracted tuberculosis. He was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 12 March 1917 and returned home to Wales. Thomas went to live with his sister, Emma Samuel, at 38, New Century Street, Trealaw, where he sadly died of tuberculosis on 17 October 1917. His case was rejected by the CWGC due to there being insufficient evidence that the Thomas Drew who died on 17 October 1917 at Trealaw is the same man who the army and medical records refer to as having died on the same date, as the death certificate states he was 30 years old, whilst he was in fact at least 34 years of age, possibly even 44!
Evan Daniel Evans, Private, 227428, Monmouthshire Regiment. Evan was the son of Evan and Elizabeth Evans, of Red Lion, Felinfach. He worked as a butcher at Pentre prior to the war and enlisted there on 10 December 1915 into the 2/1st Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment. He was posted to Lowestoft, but after over twelve months on duty took ill, and was diagnosed as suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. He was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 6 September 1917, and returned to the Red Lion, where he died of tuberculosis on 1 March 1918, aged 37. Evan is deemed as not being eligible for commemoration as his death is not linked to the cause of his discharge.
Charles Field, Stoker 1st Class, Dev/277845, Royal Navy, Nelson Battalion. Charles was born at Briton Ferry on 12 July 1875, the son of Isaac and Elizabeth Field. He married Eva E. Fox, and the couple lived at 40, Avon Terrace, Cwmgorse. Charles was a long serving Royal Naval rating. He originally enlisted into the Royal Navy on 11 September 1894, before enrolling into the Royal Fleet Reserve on 12 September 1906. Upon the outbreak of war, Charles was posted to Nelson Battalion, Royal Naval Division. In July 1915 Charles was transferred to the fleet. He survived the war, and was demobbed on 4 February 1919. Charles died of pleuro pneumonia, aged 44, on 15 February 1920, at 22, Gorse Street, Cwmgorse. Charles is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as his death cannot be proved to be linked to his war service.
William Garnett, Trooper, 559, Welsh Horse Yeomanry. William was born in Treforest in 1885. He married Mabel Couth in 1904 and the couple had a son, William Walter Garnett, who was born in 1911. He worked at the Albion Colliery prior to enlisting at Diss, in Norfolk, into the Welsh Horse Yeomanry on 1 February 1915 and was posted to Gallipoli with the Welsh Horse in September 1915. By February 1916 he had become ill and returned home to 17, Coedpenwain Road, Pontypridd after being diagnosed as suffering from heart disease brought on by rheumatic fever which he had contracted in Gallipoli. William died of heart failure while undergoing an operation after falling a horse on 1 June 1916. Because of this fact, he is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC, as even though he had only recently been invalided due to heart disease, his death is deemed to have been caused by the operation.
Robert John Guy, Private, 4538, Monmouthshire Regiment. Robert was born at Llanelli in 1898. He enlisted on 1 May 1916 into the 1st Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment, which was a Territorial unit, which became one of the first TA battalions to move to France on 13 February 1915. It is not known if Robert served in France, but he was discharged on 15 September 1916 due to sickness, and looks to have married Mary A. Bowen at Llanelli in the summer of 1917. He survived the war, taking up work as a crane driver in the steelworks. Robert died of tuberculosis at 3, New Dock Road, Llanelli on 23 February 1921, aged 23. The death certificate shows that his tuberculosis was brought on by a blow from the lever of a crane! As a result, Robert is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC and his case was rejected. I am no doctor, but I would not think that a blow from a lever would bring on TB.
Alfred James Herbert, Staff Sergeant, 25540, Royal Army Medical Corps. Alfred was born in 1876, the son of Edwin Herbert and Mary Ann Herbert (nee Millard), of 169, King Street, Brynmawr. He married Sarah Jane Latcham in Bristol in 1900, and after several moves over the coming years, settled with her and their two sons at 13, Factory Road, Brynmawr. Alfred enlisted into the Royal Army Medical Corps on 2 September 1914 and was drafted to France on 19 December 1915. He served throughout the entire war, but after the Armistice his health began to deteriorate and Alfred was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 6 June 1919, returning home to Brynmawr. He was granted a pension, due to suffering from chronic inflammation of the stomach, as a result of active service. Alfred died of stomach cancer at Brynmawr on 31 March 1921, aged 45. His case was rejected as there was insufficient evidence that his death was caused by his military service.
David Hobson, Private, 44976, Northumberland Fusiliers. David was the son of John and Jane Hobson, of Ivy Mount, Tyncoed, Great Orme’s Head, Llandudno. He had enlisted into the Northumberland Fusiliers at Llandudno on 22 November 1915 and was badly wounded in France early in 1918. After having spent several months in hospital he was discharged as medically unfit on 16 July 1918. He died at Ivy Mount, Tyn y Coed Road, Llandudno on 21 April 1919, aged 23, and is buried in Llandudno (St. Tudno’s) Churchyard. His case was submitted to the CWGC in November 2016 but was immediately rejected due to the cause of death not being related to the cause of him being discharged.
Walter Stanley Hughes, Corporal, 13771, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Walter was the son of Alfred William and Georgina Hughes, 7, Clwyd Street, Rhyl and the husband of Louisa Hughes (nee Perry), of 72, Jubilee Street, Shotton. He enlisted at Wrexham on 7 September 1914 into the Royal Welsh Fusiliers and was posted to their 10th Battalion, which was training at Colwyn Bay. Walter was discharged from the army after being found medically unfit for further service on 6 February 1915 after being diagnosed as having contracted tuberculosis, and died at7, Clywd Street, Rhyl on 17 February 1915. His case was submitted to the CWGC in November 2016 but was immediately rejected due to the cause of death not being related to the cause of him being discharged.
David Emlyn Jones, Private, 443021, Canadian Infantry. David was born on 14 October 1874, the son of David and Margaret Jones, of Llwyngwyn, Penrhiwllan. He had lived in London around the turn of the century and had emigrated to Canada with his sister Maria prior to the war, finding work as a Haberdasher. He enlisted at Vernon, British Columbia on 16 May 1915 into the Canadian Infantry, and was posted to the 54th (Kootenay) Battalion, CEF, which sailed for England on 22 November 1915. The battalion then embarked for France as part of the 10th Canadian Brigade, 4th Canadian Division in August 1916, arriving in time to take part in the latter stages of the Somme offensive. By June 1917 David had begun to feel the strain of active service and was hospitalised for the first time. He spent the remainder of the war in and out of hospital for a variety of ailments, but remained on active service in France until after the Armistice. During all of his time in France he continued to send a substantial part of his wages home to his brother Evan, who by then was living in Brook Cottage, Pembrey. David was discharged from the CEF on 4 April 1919 and on 24 June 1919 he embarked from Glasgow aboard the S.S. Caledonia, returning to Canada for further medical treatment. He died in Edmonton, Canada on 23 May 1920, aged 45. David is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC because his health had been damaged following the contraction of a social disease in London in 1902, and this disease had dogged him ever since.
John Lodwick, Sergeant, 14373, South Staffordshire Regiment. John was born in 1889, the son of David Lodwick and Mary Ann Lodwick (nee Thomas), of Penrhiw, Llandygwydd, Cardiganshire. He moved to Cardiff to work as a clerk prior to the war and married Margaret Treharne there in the autumn of 1914. John enlisted at Penarth into the 3rd Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment on 9 September 1914, soon after his marriage, and joined the battalion at Plymouth. In May 1915 the battalion moved to Sunderland, then in November 1916 moved to Forest Hall, Newcastle where it remained for the rest of the war as part of the Tyne Garrison. John served with the battalion on home service for most of the war, until being discharged from the army as medically unfit on 21 September 1918, after being diagnosed as suffering from tuberculosis. He returned home to 7, Woodville Road, Cathays, Cardiff, and resumed his pre-war position as a clerk with Cardiff Council. John died of chronic phthisis and asthma at 33, Cowbridge Road, Pontyclun on 17 November 1920, aged 38. His case was rejected by the CWGC due to insufficient evidence, even though his pension card states that his illness was 100% attributable to his war service.
William Maloney, Gunner, 16730, Royal Garrison Artillery. William was born at Barryrow, Cork in 1885. He was an army reservist and had served with the Royal Artillery for three years before marrying Ellen Condon at Merthyr in 1907 and the couple lived with their two children at 20, Thomas Street, Aberfan. He rejoined the colours on 7 August 1914 and was posted to No. 2 Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery. He served in France before being discharged from the army as medically unfit on 13 December 1915 after having been found to have contracted tuberculosis. He was sent to the Aberfan Merlyn Hospital, where he died on 23 November 1916, aged 34. His case was submitted to the CWGC in November 2016 but was immediately rejected due to the cause of death not being related to the cause of him being discharged.
Albert Wilfred Mason, Private, 14131, South Wales Borderers. Albert was the son of James Edwin Mason, and Ann Mason, of Llanelli, and the husband of Elizabeth Ann Mason, of 34, Stepney Place, Llanelli. He was a well known sportsman prior to the war, having played at Full Back for Llanelli RFC before playing professionally for Salford. Albert enlisted at Llanelli into the South Wales Borderers in September 1914, and was posted to the 4th Battalion, South Wales Borderers, which was attached to 40 Brigade, 13th (Western) Division. Albert was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 28 May 1915, after being diagnosed with phthisis, and suffering from chest pains. His medical records show that the 4th SWB had been billeted in terrible conditions, and that this had brought about Albert’s illness. Albert died on 22 December 1916, aged 32. His brother David James Mason also fell. Albert’s case was put forward by myself to the CWGC on 4 August 2013, but was rejected on 22 July 2014 as it is thought that the medical cases do not tie up. An appeal was put in by myself, but after further deliberation he was again rejected.
Peter McKelvie, Driver, W/5033, Royal Field Artillery. Peter was born at Tenby on 26 May 1881, the son of John and Catherine McKelvie. He worked as a Stableman and Llanelli prior to the war, and resided at Lyndhurst, Tunnel Road, Llanelli. Peter enlisted at Llanelli on 26 May 1915 into the Welsh Divisional Royal Field Artillery, and entrained for their camp at Pwllheli. He was discharged from the army on 17 September 1915, having contracted pulmonary tuberculosis while in camp at Pwllheli. Peter re-enlisted into the Royal Defence Corps, but was badly injured in an accident and discharged again on 1 March 1917, and returned to Llanelli to live with his brother John McKelvie. Peter died at Llanelli on 12 March 1918, aged 36. Peter’s death certificate shows that he died of bronchitis, so doesn’t exactly tie in with his tuberculosis and as a result his case has been rejected.
Thomas Miles, Private, 27433, Royal Defence Corps. Thomas was born at Carmarthen in 1862, the son of Moses and Margaret Miles. By 1891 he was working at Cardiff and by 1901 was lodging with the Bish family at Merthyr Tydfil. At some time afterwards had found work as a coal hewer at Kidwelly, where he then resided, prior to taking up employment at Pembrey Munitions Works. Thomas enlisted into the Welsh Regiment at Merthyr on 17 December 1915, giving his age as 43, and he stated on his papers that he had undergone previous military service with the Military Police. He was posted to the North Staffordshire Regiment in April 1916, and was posted to Guernsey in November 1916, where the battalion became the 17th Battalion, Royal Defence Corps. Thomas remained at Guernsey for the remainder of the war, and was discharged on 14 December 1918, his address showing Tymawr, Water Street, Kidwelly. He then tried to get a war pension, and was examined at Kidwelly on 4 February 1919, after stating to the authorities that he had contracted asthma while sleeping with ‘no mattress and only two blankets’ at the Military camp at Barry Dock in the winter of 1916. Thomas’s papers aren’t clear if his application for pension was turned down or not, but he was obviously suffering, as he died at Tymawr, Water Street, Kidwelly on 13 December 1919, aged 57. His death certificate shows that he died of bronchitis whilst an army pensioner. Sadly there is no proof on his service papers to enable Thomas to be commemorated by the CWGC.
Leonard Joseph Oakey, Private, 4161, Monmouthshire Regiment. Leonard was born in 1898, the son of Leonard John Oakey and Emma Jane Oakey (nee Cresswell), of 24, Bailey Street, Newport, Monmouth. He enlisted into the 1st Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment on 29 November 1915. Leonard had only served for six months, on home service, before he fell ill and he was diagnosed as suffering from heart disease. As a result he was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 10 June 1916 and returned home to Newport. His health continued to wane over the coming years and Leonard died of heart disease at 24, Bailey Street on 18 February 1921, aged 22. His case was rejected by the CWGC due to insufficient evidence, although his pension papers state that his heart disease was 100% attributable to his military service.
Charles Phipps, Private, 10262, South Wales Borderers. Charles was the son of Thomas and Annie Phipps, of 4, Duke Street, Blaenavon. He worked as a coal miner before enlisting at Pontypool into the South Wales Borderers on 29 June 1909. Charles served with both the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the South Wales Borderers in the years leading up to the outbreak of war, and by then was in China with the 2nd Battalion, serving in the battalions’ famous action at Tientsin. He took part in the landing of the battalion at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915 and served on the peninsula until being shot in the face on 9 April 1915. Whilst at hospital in Malta he was found to have a large sarcoma and was eventually sent to the Cancer Hospital at Glasgow for treatment, where he was discharged from the army as medically unfit. He died as a result of sarcoma of the femur on 13 November 1916, aged 25. Despite my efforts, Charles has been deemed as ineligible for official commemoration by the CWGC as he had been discharged from the army prior to his death. The fact that he was a long serving soldier when he became ill does not seem to sway this opinion. He is commemorated on the Blaenavon War Memorial.
William David Prosser, Private, 266592, Welsh Regiment. William was born at Blaenllechau, Rhondda in 1900. By 1911 he was living with his grandparents, Simon and Frances James, of Esgairwilym, Blaenporth. William enlisted on 25 July 1916 into the 4th (Reserve) Battalion, the Welsh Regiment. He was posted to France on 2 February 1918, and joined the 9th Battalion, Welsh Regiment, which was in positions near Bapaume, attached to 58 Brigade, 19th (Western) Division. William reached the battalion on 19 February, but was in action for little more than a week before he was seriously wounded, suffering a gunshot wound to his arm, and shell fragments to his leg and body, which fractured his humorous. William underwent several months of treatment at the 3rd Scottish General Hospital, before being discharged as unfit on 21 January 1919. He went to live with his Uncle, Thomas Price, at 72, High Street, Ferndale, but died there of his wounds on 2 May 1919, aged 20. William’s death certificate shows that he died of a fit, and this is deemed by the CWGC to be insufficient evidence.
Morley Roberts, Private, 290449, Pembroke Yeomanry. Morley was the son of Samuel and Rachel Roberts, of Llywynyrhaf Fach, Betws. Morley doesn’t seem to have served overseas, but remained on Home Service with the Pembroke Yeomanry. He was working as a colliery haulier prior to the war. He became ill after suffering an intestinal haemorrhage which caused him to fall into a coma and died on 25 July 1917 at Llwynyrhaf-Fach, aged 23. He was serving with the 3/1st Pembroke Yeomanry at the time he fell ill, but is impossible to prove whether or not he is eligible for commemoration as his service papers do not survive and his case has been rejected.
Henry Scourfield, Private, 44039, Royal Garrison Artillery. Henry was the son of Henry and Eliza Scourfield, of Hawkes Villa, Carmarthen. He was working at Gilfach Goch by the turn of the century, and married Hannah Beatrice Nicholas, of 10, Bryn Teg Terrace, Gilfach Goch on 24 July 1906. The couple had three daughters prior to Henry enlisting into the Royal Artillery. Henry served in France with 133 Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery from 24 June 1915, until being discharged on 15 January 1919. His time in France had taken a toll on his health, and Henry died on 4 April 1919, aged 35. He was buried with full military honours, four days later, at Glyn Ogwr Cemetery, Glamorgan. Henry is not commemorated by the CWGC, and was recently turned down for commemoration (March 2015) as his death has been deemed to have not been as a result of his military service. (Although his service papers show that his illness was 80% attributable to his service).
William Stroud, Sergeant Major, 48071, Royal Army Medical Corps. William was the husband of Keren Stroud, of Feeder Row, Cwmcarn. He enlisted into the 130th (St. John’s) Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps on 12 December 1914. William embarked with the ambulance for France on 3 December 1915, where it assembled with the remainder of the 38th (Welsh) Division. He was wounded in action on 4 May 1917 but returned to duty, to be mentioned in despatches later that year. On 23 January 1918 he was admitted to his own field ambulance before being moved to 54 Casualty Clearing Station and then to Hospital in Calais. William was sent back to England on 21 March 1918 and was discharged from the army on 26 July 1918 after being diagnosed with contracting pleurisy. He died at Bath on 18 December 1918, aged 52, and is buried in Risca Old Cemetery.
William Ewart Sturley, Private, 34467, King’s Shropshire Light Infantry. William was born in 1887, the son of Henry Sturley and Sarah Ann Sturley (nee Phillips), of 11, Maindee Parade, Newport. He married Frances Dorothy Kate Butler at Newport on 5 August 1911 and the couple set up home at 56, Christchurch Road, Newport. William worked as a clerk prior to enlisting at Newport into the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry on 14 May 1917. His papers state that he was of poor physique, and he was obviously unwell, as he was discharged from the army as medically unfit on 5 October 1917, returning home to Newport. His papers state that he was discharged due to chronic gastritis and that it had not been brought about by his military service, but soon after discharge he was diagnosed as having contracted tuberculosis, before making an appeal to the army in order to get a military pension. William died of tuberculosis at home on 1 February 1919, aged 31. His case was rejected by the CWGC due to lack of evidence.
George Harding Thomas, Rifleman, King’s Royal Rifle Corps. George was the son of Charles Howard Thomas, of Marine Gardens, Milford. He enlisted into the army at the start of the war, and was posted to France on 17 November 1915 with the 16th Battalion, King’s Royal Rifle Corps, which was attached to 100 Brigade, 33rd Division. George was badly wounded after being struck by shrapnel during November, and returned to England, where he was hospitalised at Poole. After recovery he moved to Winchester Barracks, before being sent back out to France early in 1916. George was wounded again on the Somme in July 1916, and again returned home for treatment, before being discharged as medically unfit. He then worked in a munitions factory, and in the summer of 1918 married Margaret M Davies, of Aberdare, at Milford. During 1918 the young couple were both struck down with influenza, and George died. He was 26 years old, and was buried with full military honours in Milford Haven Cemetery. He is not eligible for commemoration by the CWGC as his death could not be linked to his military service.
Walter Williams, Private, 4552, Pembroke Yeomanry. Walter was born in 1890, the son of Elizabeth Williams, of Wheaten Sheaf, Abergorlech. He was a carpenter prior to the war, and enlisted at Carmarthen into the Pembroke Yeomanry on 14 November 1914. Walter served on home service for almost a year, probably with the 2/1st Pembroke Yeomanry. He became ill, and was admitted to the 2nd Cyclist Brigade Field Ambulance at Oxford, where he was diagnosed as suffering from tuberculosis. Walter was discharged from the Yeomanry as unfit on 13 October 1916. He died at the Wheaten Sheaf, Abergorlech on 8 July 1918, aged 28. Walter’s case was passed to the CWGC in August 2013 and he was rejected on Wednesday 9 December 2015.
Ernest Withell, 2nd Engineer, Mercantile Marine. Ernest was born in 1876, the son of Thomas Henry Withell and Susan Withell (nee Burgan), of 36, Inkerman Street, Swansea. He went to sea as a young man, becoming an engineer in the Mercantile Marine. Ernest married Carrie Louisa Bourne at Swansea in Ernest Ronald Withell, born the following year. Ernest continued to serve at sea over the following years, and by the time that war erupted he was 2nd Engineer aboard the SS City of Hamburg. The ship was moored off Hamburg in the river Elbe when war was declared, and was detained by the Germans at Ruhleben. Ernest and his fellow crewmen were all incarcerated and remained in Germany as prisoners of war. Following the Armistice, Ernest was released and returned to Swansea, but his health was shattered and he was very ill by the time he returned to his family. Sadly he died of a result of an intestinal fistula and peritonitis at Swansea Hospital on 29 January 1919, aged 42. Ernest was buried in Oystermouth Cemetery. His case was rejected by the CWGC due to lack of evidence, although his Mercantile Marine pension card states that his sickness was due to his internment.