William Hills



Village memories: Archlee Terrace (picture from SWOP website)

William Hills on his wedding day


PRIVATE 205105 “C”COMPANY 3RD/4TH BATTALION THE QUEEN’S (ROYAL WEST SURREY REGIMENT)
DIED ON 04 OCTOBER 1917
REMEMBERED WITH HONOUR BEDFORD HOUSE CEMETERY
BELGIUM
GRAVE REF: ENCLOSURE NO 4 XI.A.53

William Hills was born in 1880 in Wepham ,Sussex. He was the son of John & Harriet. In 1881 they were living in Burpham, Sussex and William is 10mths old. His father is an agricultural labourer. By 1901 William has two younger brothers, George and Jesse. William is a gardener’s labourer.
At the time of his death he was married to Ellen of Archlee Terrace, Flackwell Heath. His parents were still living at Vine Cottage, Burpham in Sussex. William was previously in the Cambridgeshire Regiment no 8655.
He enlisted at High Wycombe and his regiment the Queen’s (Royal West Surrey) saw action in France during WW1.
On 4th Oct 1917 the Battalion were in the region of Polygon Wood. The previous day had been fairly quiet and now the Companies prepared for an advance at 4.30am. “C” Company moved up to support the “A” and “B ”Companies and came under a continuous barrage over the whole area which made it very difficult to clear the many wounded. This continued throughout the night. On this day 3 officers were killed and 6 wounded. 4 men were killed and 184 wounded and 19 missing. It is likely that William was one of those wounded and who later died.
The Bedford House Cemetery has over 5,139 servicemen buried or commemorated there.
Enclosure 4 is the largest and was used from June 1916 until February 1918. Many of the men are unidentified. William is also remembered in his home town of Burpham in Sussex. There is a Roll of Honour in the St Mary the Virgin Parish Church in Burpham. There is an illuminated list of 9 names for 1914 – 1918.

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