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Sydney was born in Wolverhampton in 1892, the son of Samuel and Patience Millward. In 1901 the family were living in Stafford Road, Bushbury, along with Sydney’s sister, Madeline. Sydney attended the Wolverhampton Higher Grade School. By 1911, Sydney was living alone with his widowed father at 56 Great Brickkiln Street, Wolverhampton, and Sydney had become a commercial clerk.

Sydney enlisted with the 1st/6th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 2803). He first served in France from 5 March 1915, but was killed in action on 13 October 1915. The value of his effects was £490. He is commemorated at the Loos Memorial in France, and is remembered on the Wolverhampton Higher Grade School Roll of Honour, as well as on the memorial for St Paul’s Church.