The Page brothers


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The Official Receiver of Wolverhampton, Samuel Wells Page, and his wife, Matilda, had four sons who served during the First World War – Raymond Charles, Edgar Wells, Harold Aston, and John Kenneth Samuel. Edgar has already been featured, and Harold will be featured tomorrow.

page-raymondRaymond was born in Wolverhampton in 1877. He obtained a Foundation Scholarship to Bradfield College, where he was captain of both the football and cricket teams. In 1901, Raymond was a Solicitors Clerk, and was boarding in the home of Rosa Charlotte Finnis in Chiswick, Middlesex, before becoming a Solicitor working in partnership with his father and brother Harold in Lichfield Street, Wolverhampton. He acted as Deputy Official Receiver to his father. He joined the Wolverhampton Cricket Club, and played on a number of occasions for the county. He was also a member of the South Staffordshire Golf Club. Raymond married Annie Pope in Christchurch, Hampshire, in 1911, and the couple had two children – Anthony R. M. (1912) and Dorothy A. (1916).

In June 1916, Raymond enlisted in the Royal Garrison Artillery. In April 1917 he obtained a commission in the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, and subsequently transferred as Second Lieutenant to the 8th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment. After four months in the trenches, he was invalided from the service on 22 May 1918, after a serious operation in hospital. Unfortunately, he never recovered, and died at home, which was the Poplars, Lower Street, Tettenhall, on 24 September 1918. The value of his effects was £1402 17s. 8d. News of his death was printed in the Express & Star on 25 September, and in the Midland Counties Express on 28 September 1918. He features on the South Staffs War Memorials site.

page _ johnJohn was born in 1895. He was educated at Repton School. In August 1914, he joined the Army and obtained a commission in the 9th Battalion of the Warwickshire Regiment in September. In June 1915, he went to Gallipoli, where he was wounded on 7 August, and was invalided to Egypt. He returned home in October 1915, but was well enough to return to Egypt in 1916 and be attached to the Lancashire Fusiliers. Unfortunately, he was wounded again, and died on 22 August 1918 in France. The value of his effects was £240 10s. 7d. News of his death was published in the Midland Counties Express on 31 August 1918. He is buried at Sucrerie Military Cemetery, Colincamps.

They are remembered on the memorial at St Bartholomew’s Church, Penn, in the Lady Chapel of St Peter’s Church, and Raymond is remembered on the memorial at St Michael & All Angels, Tettenhall, and is buried in the churchyard there.



Chillion Booth Harrison


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Chillion was born in Spilsby, Lincolnshire, on 24 March 1883, the son of John B. and Susanna Harrison. By 1911, he was married to Alice, and they were living at 64 Coleman Street, Wolverhampton, with their daughter Madge and son Chillion Claud. Chillion was an outside wireman, working for the National Telephone Company Limited. He later became a cabinet maker.

Chillion became an Able Seaman with the Royal Navy (number 203776), serving first on the HMS Impregnable from March 1899. He was serving on the HMS Good Hope, when his ship was lost in action off Coronel, on the coast of Chile. He died on 1 November 1914. By this date his wife was living at 37 Evans Street, Whitmore Reans, Wolverhampton. He is remembered on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. On 26 February 1915, he was listed in the Express & Star as having died, but his name was given incorrectly as “Claude B. Harrison”.

Rowland William Hill


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Rowland was born in Wolverhampton in 1899, the son of William and Sarah Hill. In 1901 they were living at 223 Trysull Road, Penn, Wolverhampton, along with Rowland’s sister, Elizabeth. They were at 12 Trysull Road in 1911, and Rowland had a brother, Clifford.

Rowland enlisted in the 17th Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers (number 57363), but was killed in action on 10 September 1918 in France or Belgium. He is buried at Perth Cemetery (China Wall) in Belgium, and is remembered on the memorial at St Phillip’s, Penn.

William Henry Blunt


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William was born in Wolverhampton in 1894, the son of Reuben and Rosa Blunt. They were living at 51 Duke Street, Wolverhampton, in 1901, along with William’s siblings Rosa, Amelia, Herbert and Joseph. They were at the same address in 1911, but William had become a grinder.

William enlisted with the 1st/6th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 4293, later 241176), but was killed in action on 1 July 1916. He is remembered at the Thiepval Memorial.

John Thomas Cresswell


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John was born in Wolverhampton in 1876, the son of Thomas and Ann Cresswell. He married Caroline Aston in Bilston in on 17 September 1894, and the couple had two sons, Albert and John. They were living at 2 Brickiln Street, Portobello, in 1901, and John was an iron turner. Unfortunately, Caroline died in 1908.

On 13 August 1914, John enlisted in the South Staffordshire Regiment (service number 10142). His trade by then was given as  corrugated iron roofer, and his address was 245 Montrose Street, Wolverhampton. On 21 October 1914 he was discharged as being physically unfit for further service. I have not been able to trace him further, although he appears on the Portobello war memorial

Horace Osborne Robotham or Rowbotham


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Horace (known mainly as “Harry”) was born in Wolverhampton in 1879, the son of Uriah W. A. and Ellen Robotham. In 1901 he was living at Kirkstall, Yorkshire, boarding in the home of Georgina A. Darnborough, and working as a bricklayers labourer. On 5 June 1905, he married Jessie Gertrude Doherty at St Paul’s Church, Wolverhampton, and by 1911 they were living at 34 Junction Street, Springfields, with their two children, Constance and Horace. Horace was working as a window cleaner and grocer. The couple went on to have three further children – John, Bernard and Phillis.

Horace was also a professional footballer, and played for Hunslet before signing for Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1901. In 1903, he joined Fulham, and played for a few other clubs until 1909.

On 26 November 1915, he enlisted in the Duke of Cambridge’s Own (Middlesex) Regiment (service number 2387). His address by then was 31 Field Street, Wolverhampton. He served in France, but unfortunately, he was killed in action on 12 September 1916. He is remembered at the Thiepval Memorial, as well as on the memorial at St Stephen’s Church, Springfields

William Whalen or Whalin


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William was born in Wolverhampton in 1886. In 1901, he was boarding at the home of Thomas H. Tilley at 28 Victoria Road, Upper Penn, and was working as a labourer in a tin shop. He married Eliza Smith in Wolverhampton at St Paul’s Church, Penn Road, Wolverhampton, on 20 July 1908. The couple had two children – Nellie (1909) and John William (1914).

On 1 December 1916, William enlisted in the South Staffordshire Regiment (service number 32189). His address was given as 2 Court Raglan Street, Wolverhampton, and he was working as a fitters labourer. On 29 March 1917, he was discharged as being no longer physically fit for military service, following sickness. On 21 March 1917, he was awarded the Silver War Badge (number 154826) as a result.

Unfortunately, he died in Wolverhampton on 23 March 1922, which may have been as a result of his military service.

Archibald “Archie” Needham


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The son of William Henry and Sarah Needham, Archie was born in Sheffield on 24 May 1881. He became a professional footballer, playing for Sheffield United, Crystal Palace, and Glossop North End, before joining Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1910. In 1911, he was boarding in the home of William Griffiths at 78 Wednesfield Road, Wolverhampton. In 1911, he moved to play for Brighton & Hove Albion.

During the war, Archie served with the Royal Flying Corps, later the Royal Air Force (number 6666). He married Ethel Margaret Bacon in Horsham, Sussex, on 5 December 1915. Archie survived the war.

By 1939, they were still living in Horsham, and Archie had become a textile engineer, but was retired by that date. Archive died on 29 October 1950, when his address was 17 Hangleton Road, Hove, Sussex. The value of his effects was £13115 8s. 8d.

George Bowers


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The son of Thomas and Harriet Stringer Bowers, George was born in Eccleshall, Staffordshire, in about 1881. By 1891, the family were living at Lower Green, Tettenhall, together with George’s siblings Lucy, Jane, Ellen and Arthur. Harriet died in Wolverhampton in 1894, and Thomas remarried, to Martha Griffiths, a year later.

George enlisted in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Welsh (Welch) Fusiliers (service number 7000). He first served in France from September 1914, but was killed in action in France on 20 July 1916. He is buried at the Caterpillar Valley Cemetery in Longueval, and remembered on the war memorial at St Michael & All Angels Church, Tettenhall.

Eleader or Eleander “Ted” Juggins


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Eleader was born in Birmingham on 15 June 1882. By 1901, he was living with his grandparents, Eleader and Merab Duncombe, in Wednesbury. He was working as a foundry labourer. On 14 April 1903, he married Elizabeth Moore in Walsall. He was playing football as a goalkeeper for Darlaston, and joined Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1904. In 1907, he left Wolves to play for Coventry City. By 1911, the couple were living in Coventry with their four children Eleader Samuel, Percy, Ida Beatrice and Edna May. He played for Coventry until 1913. He later became a licensed victualler at the New Inn, King William Street, Coventry.

In June 1916, Eleader enlisted as a Gunner with the 123rd Siege Battery of the Royal Garrison Artillery (number 90986). He survived the war, and was discharged in 1919. He died in 1966.