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16628 William Bevan 18th Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers KIA 26/3/18


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I'm looking for information on William Bevan who was with the 18th Lancashire Fusliers. He was KIA on 26th March 1918. His name is mentioned in the Pozieres Cemetery (wall 32). Any info would be appreciated. 

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  • Michelle Young changed the title to William Bevan 18th Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers KIA 26/3/18
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His service number was 16628, which places him enlisting directly into the 18th (Service) Battalion (South East Lancashire) of the Lancashire Fusiliers upon it being raised in January 1915. His War Gratuity of £14 10s also aligns with an enlistment date of January 1915.

 

SDGW reveals that he was born and resided in Wednesbury (Staffordshire) and he apparently enlisted in Darlaston (Staffs). This might be surprising given he joined a Lancashire Regiment but the 18th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers was a Bantam Battalion and it was quite normal when these Battalions were created for men to seek them out often some distance from their residence, so keen were they to be able to join up.

 

The 18th Bn LF were in 104th Brigade of 35th Division which deployed to France in January 1916. It would seem reasonable to conclude that Bevan went as part of the original Battalion at that time. Because he first entered a theatre of war in January 1916 he was not entitled to the 1914/1915 Star but of course he did qualify for the British War Medal & Victory Medal as per his MIC/Medal roll.

 

As advised above, you can download for free the 18th Bn LF War Diary and also the 104th Brigade & 35th Division Headquarters War Diaries to gain an appreciation of where he went, the actions in which he was involved and the circumstances of his death.

 

Regards

 

Russ

 

 

 

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Hi Ellen. Welcome to the forum. There does not appear to be an Attestation / Service record for Private William Bevan 16628 serving with the Lancashire Fusiliers meaning it may have been destroyed in 1940 during the Blitz. William's Medal Index Card (MIC) is available for free download from the National Archives at https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D1313757 showing he was posthumously awarded the Victory Medal (VM) and British War Medal (BWM) but no Star meaning he mostly likely didn't deploy to a Theatre of War (TOW) until on or after the 1st January 1916. Ancestry also hold the MIC and the corresponding Medal Roll for the VM and BWM in addition to William's entry in the Army Registers of Soldiers Effects which I have attached.  

 

The 18th Battalion War Diary (WD) may also be of interest as it records the movements and actions William may have been involved in including the day he was killed. As Michelle says, this is also available at the NA for free download https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7353964

 

Hope this is of some help. 

 

 

Screen Shot 2021-04-06 at 21.49.15.png

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Further to my posting (& that of Gunner 87) above, his service records have evidently not survived.

 

A search for records of men with similar numbers confirms a January 1915 enlistment date directly into the 18th LF.

 

It also reveals quite a few of these men came from Staffordshire - this would be something worth researching to discover any pattern(s) and reason(s) for that.

 

As an example, here is one page from the record of Frederick Calcott who had the number one digit (16627) before Bevan's (16628), showing his enlistment at Darlaston.

 

The record also shows his relatively short stature (5' 1"), so typical of the Bantam men.

 

Regards

 

Russ

 

 

16627 LF.jpg

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It seems clear he and his unit got caught up in the so-called German Spring Offensive of March 1918

 

The 18/Bn LF WD records that 2 Officers and 28 Other Ranks were killed (+1 OR DoW), 3 Officers and 128 Other Ranks were wounded and 1 Officer and 84 Other Ranks were missing. You could check with the CWGC website how many of the missing were later found to have been killed.

 

Quite a day !

 

Russ

(Image Courtesy of Ancestry)

 

Spring Offensive - Wikipedia

 

The First Battles of the Somme, 1918 – The Long, Long Trail

 

 

18 LF WD.JPG

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  • spof changed the title to 16628 William Bevan 18th Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers KIA 26/3/18

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