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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

George Wright of Witney


Stanley_C_Jenkins

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About 25 years ago a World War One Star was discovered in a cottage in Marlborough Lane in Witney. It was awarded to A-2229 L-Cpl George Wright of the Kings Royal Rifle Corps, who was killed in action on 24 August 1916. His army records claim that he was born in Witney, but his name does not appear on Witney War Memorial. He was a relative of Edna Green (nee Evans) who had lived in the house for most, if not all of her life.

Civilian records suggest that George Wright was born around 1879. The 1901 census shows a George Wright in Aston, near Birmingham, who was born circa 1879 in Witney; he is a boarder, and his occupation would appear to be navvy The 1911 also shows a George Wright who was born in Witney though he is a little older than expected (33). He's a general labourer in a brickyard and is boarding at the same address as in 1901. His family are, meanwhile, still living in Witney, in the cottage in which his medal was later found. I assume that, as George Wright is not on the Witney memorial, his name may have been inscribed on the Aston war memorial – if not, he is pesumably one of the “uncommemorated”.

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He is commemorated - by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission:

WRIGHT, GEORGE

Rank: Lance Corporal

Service No: A/2229

Date of Death: 24/08/1916

Regiment/Service: King's Royal Rifle Corps 9th Bn.

Panel Reference: Pier and Face 13 A and 13 B.

Memorial: THIEPVAL MEMORIAL

Additional Information:

CGM

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When I said "uncommemorated" I was thinking about the Witney war memorial - I forgot about the Thiepval memorial.

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On the CWGC commemmoration there is no "Additional Information" (which would have been supplied by the family).

This may, or may not, be of significance, when considering why George seems not to be commemorated locally.

CGM

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There are problems in terms of the civil records, which do not quite add up - although it seems quite clear that George Wright was a Witney man who was working in the Birmingham area at the time of the Great War. The fact that one of his medals turned up in his family home in Witney is significant.

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