Stockton Lads in the Great War

These Stockton lads were either on the way or in France for the Great War. Top right is Herbert James Wilson, finally a coal merchant on his return to England after the war. He was my grandfather and we do not know the names of the rest of the lads – anybody more information? c1914. Photograph and text courtesy of Mr Alan Davis, Perth, Western Australia.

25 thoughts on “Stockton Lads in the Great War

  1. I know this is old posting but in the years since 2005 found out a great deal about my granddad Casey. He joined Kings Own Scottish Borderers in Stockton 1912, he joined with his mate Pat Sullivan, granddad was first wounded October 1914, brought back to UK, then off to Gallipoli until campaigned called off, then back into France for the Somme offensive, fell wounded once again 1st July 1916.


  2. Anyone have any photo’s or information on Reg Wilson born 1931 and living at Green Farm, Napton? Any memories of the fairs on the farmland there?


  3. My cousin GEORGE BELL was drafted to the airborne division in the latter end of World War 2 at the age of 18 he lived in Garnett Road, Thornaby-on-Tees he had 2 weeks training and then along with 10000000 of other young lads dropped over ARNHEM never to be heard of again? my aunt Emma got a printed letter stating Missing in Action.


  4. My Grandfather was killed on 28th March 1918. He served with Royal Engineers, 227th Field Company, (Stockton on Tees). His number was 160393.
    My Grandfather’s name was Reginald Wright and he lived in Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire.
    I have done a great deal of research and I am trying to find out when he joined up and whether he volunteered or was conscripted. In addition I’d to find out the significance of being within the 227th Field Company when he lived in Leeds.
    Can anybody help, please


  5. Thank you Gary for the information, we have also found a large photograph of my grandfather in uniform but unfortunately the best old photograph of the complete regiment has not been seen for years, remeber it took pride of place in my Nan’s house in Myrtle Road when they lived there. They moved from Frederick street but not sure when. My grandfather died in 1953 aged 69 years old, father to ten children.


  6. I am a researcher (Tommiestraced) and I specialise in WW1 research. If your grandfather was Herbert James Wilson and lived in Federick Street, Stockton on Tees; he served in the Royal Engineers with 234th Field Compsny and held the rank of Pioneer, number 131541. Herbert joined the army in 1915 aged 30 years and his trade was given as a Cartman. His service papers are available from National Archive and David Wright is correct, the badge and the uniforms do look more likely to be Royal Engineers so the record I have discovered is very possibly to your grandfather.


    • I would appreciate any input you may have or where I can find details as to where my grandfather joined up and when. I’ve looked at the RE web site and details of Marton Hall but to no avail.

      I hope you find the information below to be of interest.

      Extract of various e-mails

      I thought you’d be interested in the e-mail below, from Councillor Al (a woman) Garthwaite, it shows the cooperation from a number of sources but mainly from Leeds City Council who are custodians of Headingley War Memorial. There will at last be a recognition of my grandfathers sacrifice along with others already on the cenotaph at St Michaels Church, Headingley. It has been a long and convoluted exercise but it has been worth it. Although, at first, I thought my grandfather (Reginald Wright) had been given an additional initial, as the name on the Memorial was shown as R. A. Wright. However, I subsequently discovered that, Sergeant R. A. Wright of The Royal Warwickshire Regiment was rightfully on the Memorial and also had a seat dedicated to him at Leeds Minster. At that stage I thought my goals had been shattered until moves to bring about a rectification had been implemented as outlined below.
      The whole purpose of this exercise was to honour my grandfather and father. I’m sure they would have both been very proud.


      Hi Graham

      We have made good progress and I was meaning to contact you about it, but you have got there first. We are finalising the exact method by which your grandfather’s name will be added to the memorial at the moment. We think an inset plaque beneath the last name will be best.

      We also need to fix a date for the event to commemorate the cleaning of the memorial as a whole, and the placing of a memorial WW1 bench, as well as the addition of your grandfather’s name. The vicar has agreed that this could take place on a Sunday immediately after Church, at about 10.45am, so the congregation can be involved. He can give a blessing and we can have refreshments afterwards in the church. We would like to book a band or at least a bugler for the event.

      How is Sunday April 2nd for you? Alternatively, there is Sunday April 23rd. We prefer 2nd but are happy with 23rd if that’s better for you, so let me know.

      With best wishes,


      Cllr Al Garthwaite
      Leeds City Council
      07957 152107

      As you will see the progress made has been far beyond my expectations and support has been fantastic. We are currently fixed on the 2nd April 2017 at approximately 10.45 for the ceremony and whilst I know your time is precious should you wish to attend please let me know.
      Thanks once again,
      Graham Wright,
      Hilditch House,
      Danby Wiske,
      DL7 0NQ

      Sapper Reginald Wright, Royal Engineers,
      227th Field Company (Stockton on Tees),
      Service Number: 160393,
      Died: 28th March 1918

      The CWGC entry is simply R Wright and no Family Verification Form was returned.
      He appears to have been buried by the Germans, who over run the area during the March 1918 offensive.
      The Australian Burial Unit noted him as “163093 Wright R Wes. British” (presumably taken from the Memorial Cross erected by the Germans).
      His reburial was 26 May 1919.

      Commonwealth War Graves Commission – Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, Somme, France

      Below is the name of Sergeant Robert Alban Wright which currently appears on the Headingley War Memorial.

      Sergeant Robert Alban Wright,
      Royal Warwickshire Regiment Service Number: 15/662
      Date of Death: 13/04/1918
      Melville Communal Cemetery,

      Soldiers Died in the Great War shows him as being born in Bedford, enlisted in Birmingham and residing at Shirley, Warwickshire. As well as the Headingly memorial, there is a commemorative plaque for him on a chair in The Lady Chapel,Church of St Peter (Leeds Minster), Leeds. He is also listed in the Birmingham Book of Remembrance in Birmingham Hall of Remembrance. In The Register of Soldiers Effects his sister Katherine is shown as being the sole legatee.


    • Are you the Gary Hadaway who wrote a booklet on Sgt. Alexander Edwards V.C. of 1st World War? If so how do I get a copy of the booklet.

      Thanks for your help

      Eileen Jørgensen (née Edwards)


  7. My grandad Robert Casey lived in Housewife Lane when he joined the 3rd battalion K.O.S.B in 1912. He was sent to join the 1st battalion 4 weeks after war broke out, he fought through until 1st day of the battle of the Somme and he spent time in French hospital having shrapnel and bullet removed from left leg. He was then sent back to the UK for further hospital treatment. He was honourably disharged in 1918 and he died from his wounds 1939. We, his grandchildren, never got to see our grandad. I know from his war record that he was just 5ft 3″ tall. I believe that several other Stockton lads joined the K.O.S.B about the same time as grandad and wondered if anyone knows of old photos about, hoping for small miracle that a photo of grandad could turn up. Please help if you can, Picturestockton have my e-mail address for any one out there who knew the Caseys from Housewife lane/Snowdons yard & Swainby rd.


  8. The war diary of the 225th Field company is held at the national archives and notes daily locations, actions and casualties. My Great Uncle Joseph Richardson of Florence St, Stockton is mentioned twice, once on a trench raid and once being fatally wounded. I also have photos of the entire regiment, though no names are on the photos.


  9. As an ex Sapper I have to say the cap badge looks as though it is that of the Royal Engineers. I believe there were 3 Field Companys formed in Nov 1915 at Marton Hall: they were the 225th, 227th and 234th Field Companys(Stockton-on Tees)and were on the war establishment of the 39th Division of K5 Kitchener’s New Army. The Division was mobilised to Northern France early 1916.


  10. Now I know most of my grandads record with the K.O.S.B, he was no conscript but a regular soldier Joining K.O.S.B 1912, amongs the 1st into France and fell severly wounded 1/7/16 on the first day of the battle of the Somme, his wounds were so severe that grandad was discharged February 1918, still have some of my grandads records to be researched, its hit and miss if the records you are looking for survivers but always worth finding out. I recommend
    Through their research I now know my grandad Robert Casey was an Old Contemtable


    • Derek, forgive me for smiling at your January 2005 remark that your grandad Robert Casey, of the Kings Own Scottish Borderers, was an Old Contemptible, why I smiled was because the Casey’s I knew of from Tilery were all contemptible in the sense that if you punched one then you had to be prepared to punch the lot.


      • Hi Bob, not sure any of my Casey’s lived in Tilery, they lived in old stockton area housewife lane, thistlegreen + I’m sure your talking about different Casey’s, all or grandads Caseys came to Swainby & Danby road, my grandad died 1939, just in time for WW11 and his son also called Robert Casey had to do his bit, my dad Robert was a young merchant navy lad, his ship Wentworth was sunk by U-boat between 5-6th May 1943 Atlantic, convoy ONS 5, sailed on Arctic convoys, strange thing about our merchant havy lads when they left the sea as dad did to marry my mother 1946, thousands never received campaign medals, it was 1993 when I decided to look into dads merchant navy days, christmas eve 1993 I was visiting our eldest son who was stationed at RAF Northolt when 4 of dads medals turned up, even then I had to look further to get all of his campaign awards,
        same lads merchant & Royal navy had to wait until almost 65 years after the war ended to ge awarded the Arctic Star, many men from WW11 have still not got campaign medals, so sad.


  11. All documents about my grandad Robert Casey and service with K.O.S.B now found, lots of 1st world war records lost during bombing WW2
    now know he was there at the start of great war and left K.O.S.B 1918,any one researcing WW1 records contact Battlefiel Tours, they are 1st class, all the best Derek.


  12. If Derek Casey wants to find anything else out, have a WW1 service records section (entering as much info as you have) I have found these to be very useful myself.


  13. My grandads marriage certificate 1917 states he was in the K.O.S.B, is it possible that these letters stand for any else other than Kings Own Scotish Borderes? Trying to trace his 1st world war record.


  14. As my grandfather is in the photograph I will attempt to find the regiment details from his remaining family. We have a better photograph of him in uniform and at one time a large photograph of his regiment.


    • Alan, Don’t know if you’ll pick this up goes in hope
      My Grandfather was in the 225th Field Company RE and I have been and continue to do extensive research on “Stockton’s Own” (as the 225th, 227th and 234th were know). I have a copy of the war diary of the 234th (Original held in the National Archives) and a photo of the full Field Company, (I’ve also have the same info for the 225th and 227th).
      I’m happy to exchange info


  15. Thanks lads for suggesting trying the Army Museum but they dont have the records for anything before 1920, you must go to the National Archive London, will have to try and get down there some day but thanks anyway – all the best.


  16. The badge is definitely not the Kings Own Scottish Borderers as that is quite large. During wartime, and after, you went where you were sent and if a Regiment wanted to make up numbers to go abroad another Regiment would see a Company of troops change their cap badge and march off. In my time a Company of the D.L.I. changed to Somerset Light Infantry and went to Singapore. Your best bet is to Google K.O.S.B and then contact the Regimental Museum, they will have lists of soldiers who served with that Regiment.


  17. Would love to know what regiment these lads are in. My own grandad fought with the K.O.S.B. but what we cant find out is where he joined. We think it might have been in Glasgow but not very sure. How would I find information, my grandads name Robert Casey, his mam & dad lived in Housewife lane Stockton. Can any one help?


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