306133 PTE. W. WHITEHEAD. K.L.R.
William Whitehead was born in 1892 and baptised at Emmanuel Parish Church on 14 April. His father was also William Whitehead (b. 1868 in Churchtown, near Garstang), a butcher by trade. His mother was Margaret Marshall (b. 1869 in Preston). William and Margaret were married at Emmanuel Church in 1888 and they had 8 children, losing one in infancy. The survivors were: Margaret Alice (b. 1890), then William, then Henry (b. 1895), Ethel (b. 1897), Richard (b. 1899), Albert (b. 1907) and finally Ellen (b. 1910). In 1911, William snr was living and working with his parents – his father Henry Whitehead owned a family butcher’s at 73 Adelphi Street, Preston. Margaret meanwhile was living with their children at 52 Nelson Street, Preston. She was at home but the four older children, including William jnr were cotton weavers. William snr died in 1913 and in 1915 Margaret remarried. Her husband was William Richard Moss (b. 1863 in Bamber Bridge, father of Herbert Moss, killed in action in 1915). The newspaper article published at the time of William jnr’s death says the family lived at Station Road, Bamber Bridge but that William was still working in Preston.
The article says William joined up in 1914 but I think it may have been a little later, but in any case, he joined the King’s (Liverpool Regiment), was assigned service number 306133 and posted to 2nd/8th Battalion. 2nd/8th (Irish) Battalion came under orders of 171st Brigade in 57th (2nd West Lancashire) Division. 276 Brigade (with many recruits from Bamber Bridge) formed part of the Divisional artillery, but each infantry brigade had its own Trench Mortar Battery and William was attached to 171st TMB. The Division landed in France in February 1917 and during the summer of that year they were engaged in the defence of Armentières. It was here on 26 July 1917 that William was killed in action. He was 25 years old.
Service Number: 306133
Date of Death: 26/07/1917
Regiment/Service: The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 2nd/8th Bn.
Cemetery/memorial reference: VIII. D. 19.
Cemetery: CITE BONJEAN MILITARY CEMETERY, ARMENTIERES