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Somerset Light Infantry in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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Somerset Light Infantry

Want to know more about Somerset Light Infantry ?

There are:34650 pages and articles tagged Somerset Light Infantry available in our Library

Those known to have served with

Somerset Light Infantry

during the Great War 1914-1918.

  • Atkin Walter Edward. Pte. 1st Btn. (d.9th August 1916)
  • Bardell Louis Harvey. Pte. 12th Btn. (d.6th Nov 1917)
  • Beck Frederick Charles. Pte. 7th Battalion
  • Bevan Thomas. L/Cpl. 7th Battalion
  • Bingham Robert James. Sgt. 1st Battalion (d.1st July 1916)
  • Blenkiron Alfred Victor. 2nd Lt.
  • Bolsom J. H.. Pte. 12th Btn. (d.6th Nov 1917)
  • Bolsom J. H.. Pte. 12th Btn. (d.6th Nov 1917)
  • Bond Arthur Howe. CSM. 1st Btn. (d.1st July 1916)
  • Bond Charles Nesbitt. Lt. 3rd Btn. (d.30th Jun 1916)
  • Bond Thomas Percy. Sgt. 1st Btn. (d.19th December 1914)
  • Brace Douglas. Pte. 6th Btn (d.28th Sep 1916)
  • Bull Samuel. Pte. 1st Btn.
  • Burfield William Thomas Riley. Pte. 6th Btn., D Coy.
  • Carcary Arthur Henry. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.6th July 1915)
  • Champion Henry John. Sgt. 1st Battalion (d.31st October 1914)
  • Chick Eli George. 1st Btn.
  • Clarke Harold Edward. Pte. 1st/5th Btn. (d.7th Aug 1916)
  • Clist Leslie William John. 2nd Lt. 2/4th Btn.
  • Coram Wilfred Jacob. Pte 8th Btn
  • Crook James. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Curry Arthur Frederick. Sgt. 1st Btn. (d.26th August 1914)
  • Davis Henry. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.1st July 1916)
  • Daymond Frederick Stanley. Pte. 7th (Service) Battalion (d.22nd Sept 1917)
  • Dolman Richard. 2nd Lt.
  • Down John. Sgt. 8th Btn. (d.3rd March 1918)
  • Drew Frederick Charles. Pte. 11th Battalion (d.16 August 1917)
  • Durman C H. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Durnford Henry Charles. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.16th September 1916)
  • Eades Robert Alfred. Pte. 12th (West Somerset Yeomanry) Bn. (d.2nd September 1918)
  • England Albert Ernest. Sgt. 1st Btn. (d.9th Aug 1916)
  • Farmer Walter. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.4th Nov 1918)
  • Fenwick Andrew Lees. Sgt. 8th Btn. (d.15th May 1916)
  • Garland James Henry Hill. Pte. 6th Btn.
  • Gilbert Alexander Thomas. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.25th September 1915)
  • Gregory Walter Stanley. Pte. 8th Battalion (d.1st July 1916)
  • Griffin Arthur. Pte. 6th Btn.
  • Griggs A. E. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Hansford Frederick Henry John. Pte
  • Hewlett William. Sgt. 6th Btn.
  • Hill Herbert John. Pte. 12th Btn. (d.27th Dec 1917)
  • Hobbs Victor. Sgt. 6th Btn.
  • Holden Wilfrid. L/Cpl. 12th (West Somerset Yeomanry) Bn (d.2nd September 1918)
  • Horne Allen Ernest. Sgt. 8th Battalion (d.28th Dec 1917)
  • Horne Edwin Percy Lott. Pte. 1st Btn. (d.17th July 1917)
  • Howell Edwin Thomas. Pte 8th Btn (d.31st July 1917)
  • Hunt William George. Sjt. 7th Btn. A Coy (d.16th Sep 1916)
  • Impson William. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.25th Sep 1915)
  • Jarman Arthur George. Pte. 1st Battalion, D Coy. (d.2nd June 1915)
  • Jefferies Alfred L.. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.1st Nov 1916)
  • Johnson Thomas James. 1st Btn.
  • Keetch Austin Job. L/Cpl. 8th Battalion (d.19th Nov 1916)
  • King Victor Charles. 8th Btn.
  • King W H. Cpl 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Knightbridge Arthur William James. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.31st July 1917)
  • Lake Ernest Henry. Pte. 8th Btn (d.4th Oct 1917)
  • Lawrence Reginald Harry. Pte. 7th Battalion
  • Lax Lorraine. 8th Battalion
  • Legg Thomas John. Pte. 1st Btn.
  • Lewis Joseph. Pte. 8th Battalion (d.29th Jun 1916)
  • Lord Robert Charles. Pte. 1st Battalion (d.21st October 1918)
  • Mail William James. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.20th Sept 1916 )
  • Marlow Archibald. Pte. 11th Btn.
  • McMurtie G. D. J.. Capt. 6th Btn.
  • Miller Maurice Epton. Pte. 6th Battalion (d.21st Mar 1918)
  • Milton Joseph John. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.16th Sept 1916)
  • Morris Arthur Edwin. Pte. 1st Battalion (d.1st July 1916)
  • Mossman Alexander. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.30th September 1915)
  • Musselbrook Frank. Pte. 11th Btn.
  • Newman William John. Pte. 1st Btn. (d.26th Aug 1914)
  • Nicholls Arthur. Pte. 8th Btn.
  • Packe Edward Alexander. Capt.
  • Padfield Edwin John. Pte. 8th Battalion (d.30th Jun 1918)
  • Painter H J. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Phillips Louis. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.19th Aug 1915)
  • Pike John. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.30th Jun 1918)
  • Poole Thomas Henry. Pte. 6th Btn.
  • Priddice Edward Edwin. Sjt. 1st Btn. (d.3rd May 1915 )
  • Prout Lee. Cpl. 8th Btn. A Coy. (d.1st July 1916)
  • Radley Edward Kingsford. Cpl. 8th Btn. A Coy. (d.31st Jul 1917)
  • Reynolds Henry. L/Sgt. 3rd Btn.
  • Ridewood Cecil Maurice. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.10th April 1917)
  • Roberts Thomas. Pte. 1st Battalion (d.26th Aug 1914)
  • Rousell Henry. Pte. 1st Battalion (d.20th Oct 1916)
  • Shevels Robert Henry. Pte. 8th Btn. (d.1st July 1916)
  • Skrine Henry Langton. Capt. 6th Btn. (d.25th Sep 1915)
  • Smith Arthur Robert Lofton. Pte. 7th Btn.
  • Smith G. L/Cpl. 8th Btn. (d.29th June 1916)
  • Summers William. Pte. 5th Battalion
  • Tavener George William. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.22nd Aug 1916)
  • Taylor Gilbert Charles. Pte. 2nd/4th Btn. (d.23rd Feb 1919)
  • Thomas Robert Dixon Hardy. Pte. 8th Battallion (d.5th Sep 1915)
  • Tomkins Ernest Daniel. Pte. 2/6th Btn. (d.29th Jan 1918)
  • Trevelyan Sidney John. Pte. 12th Battlion (d.6th Nov 1917)
  • Trim Ernest Frank. L/Cpl. 8th Btn (d.28th Apr 1917)
  • Upshall Theophilus. Pte. 6th Btn. (d.16th September 1916)
  • Venning William Edwin. Sgt. 1st Btn.
  • Webber Joseph. Sgt 8th Btn (d.25th Sept 1915)
  • Williams Gilbert Henry. L/Cpl. (d.23rd May 1915)
  • Wiltshire William E.. Cpl. 1st Btn. (d.9th Aug 1916)
  • Wood Charles Henry. Pte.
  • Wood Charles. Pte
  • Young Wesley George. Pte. 7th Battalion (d.7th Oct 1916)

All names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List

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Cpl. Edward Kingsford Radley 8th Btn. A Coy. Somerset Light Infantry (d.31st Jul 1917)

Edward Kingsford Radley

Edward Radley enlisted on 8th September 1915. Ed was in 'A' company of the 8th Battalion of the Somerset Light infantry engaged in 3rd Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele). He was killed in action on 31st July 1917 and his body was never found. His name is engraved on Panel 21 of Menin Gate, Ypres, Belgium.

The 8th Battalion of Somerset Light Infantry was under the command of the 63rd Brigade which joined the 37th Division on 8th July 1916 (thought to be part of 2nd Army). The Somersets fought with the 8th Btn. of Lincolnshire and 4th Btn. of Middlesex Regiments in the 63rd Brigade at the Battle for Pilckem Ridge which commenced at 0350 on 31st July 1917. This was the 1st of 6 phases of the 3rd Battle of Ypres. In the terrible conditions of heavy enemy fire and thick Flanders mud Ed never survived the first day.

CWGC certificate

John Morriss


L/Cpl. Wilfrid Holden 12th (West Somerset Yeomanry) Bn Somerset Light Infantry. (d.2nd September 1918)

Wilfrid Holden died on the 2nd September 1918, aged 27 and is buried in the Peronne Communal Cemetery Extension in France. He was the son of Edward and Catherine Holden, of Gainsborough, Ribbleton Avenue, Preston.

s flynn


CSM. Arthur Howe Bond MID 1st Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.1st July 1916)

CSM Arthur Bond was killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. He is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial. Arthur was twice mentioned in dispatches.


Sgt. Thomas Percy Bond 1st Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.19th December 1914)

Thomas Bond was one of three brothers and a father who served in WW1. He was killed in action in Ploegsteert Wood just prior to the Christmas truce.


Pte. Cecil Maurice Ridewood 8th Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.10th April 1917)

Cecil Ridewood was killed in action at the Battle of Arras, aged 19. I cannot find his service record, although I have found his medal record.

Cecil was born in 1897, one from the youngest of 15 children. He is commemorated on the Arras Memorial, Bay 4, Faubourg-d'Amiens Cemetery.


L/Cpl. Ernest Frank Trim 8th Btn Somerset Light Infantry (d.28th Apr 1917)

At the Battle of Arleux Ernest Trim attacked with the Somerset's on the 28th Apr Their objectives were Wish and Whip Trenches,running along the Plouvain to Gavrelle Road. Ernest has no known grave and is commemorated on the Arras Memorial.

His brother (my Great grandfather) Pte 5548 S Trim 68th Coy MGC also fell, succumbing to his wounds on the 24th Dec 1916 and is buried in Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery.


Pte. Louis Harvey Bardell 12th Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.6th Nov 1917)

Louis Bardell was a Birmingham lad. He attended KE VI Camp Hill School in Birmingham before becoming a clerk. He enlisted in Birmingham in 1916 and served in the EEF. He died in 1917, the last survivor of a Lewis Gun team.

A J Bulloch


L/Cpl. Gilbert Henry Williams Somerset Light Infantry (d.23rd May 1915)

I retrieved Gilbert Williams's information when investigating the Death Penny.

Stephen Williams


Cpl. William E. Wiltshire 1st Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.9th Aug 1916)

William E Wiltshire, Somerset Light Infantry

William Wiltshire was born in Bath, Somerset on August 15th 1893 and was the eldest of 11 children. When he left school, he took a job as a blacksmith striker in Bath. His father was a Bugler Sgt Maj, in the Somerset Lights, so it wasn't hard to believe that the boys would follow in his footsteps.

Bill joined up in 1914, from Lower Bristol Rd, Bath, Somerset. On the out break of war and was deployed after training to France, with the 11th and 4th Somerset Light Infantry. They took to sea on the HMHS Braemar and landed at Le Havre on 22nd Aug 1914.

He had a couple of lucky escapes during his time over seas that ended in him being in a field hospital, after an explosion went off near him. The horrors he must of seen and experienced must of been total confusion for such a young lad from rural Bath. From what information I can gather he went home on leave just one time, to visit with his family. He wasn't married and as far I know he had no children. He gained rank and fought hard. But, on August 9th 1916, sadly William fell foul to drift gas, he died at 630am at Remy Siding, in the company of the 3rd Canadian Clearing Station. He was laid to rest with his fellow brave pals at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Poperinge, Belgium. He was survived by Bugler Sgt Maj William John Wiltshire, Bugler Herbert Frank, Bugler Harold Ewart, and Bugler Reginald Rupert.

William was my Great Uncle. I am so very proud to have his photo, and the medals he received. He gave everything for King and Country. He gave his life. Such a brave and selfless young man. One of many that gave all. May he rest in eternal peace and know he is not forgotten.

Sue Zdanowicz


Lorraine Lax 8th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry

My great granddad, Lorraine Lax, survived WW1, including Loos, the Somme and being shot in head at Arras. But did not survive British justice.

Kevin Lax


Pte. William Thomas Riley Burfield 6th Btn., D Coy. Somerset Light Infantry

William Burfield was born on 1st of October 1877 in Blaenavon in Wales, but moved to Taunton (and later Yeovil) as a boy with his family. In 1903 he married (Florence) Ethel Hockey in Norton-sub-Hamden and they had five children: Wilfred b.1903, Daisy b.1906, Leslie b.1910, Nora b.1914 and (Stanley) Norman b.1919.

William was a painter and decorator by trade and signed up for the Yeovil Territorials before WW1 started. The Yeovil Territorials were incorporated into the 6th Battalion of the Somerset Light Infantry when war broke out and, despite already being 37 years old, William joined up (he may have lied about his age and claimed to be 34 in 1914 and not 37 as he really was). William was a very fit man for his age and he first saw action in France in August 1915 in D company, and he fought on the Western front for two years before being invalided out of the Somerset Light Infantry in August 1917 at Ypres at the age of 39.

Thereafter he served out his time in the Labour Corps before returning home to Montacute where he died of pneumonia on 1st March 1921, aged just 43. According to his son Wilfred, William's lungs were damaged in the Great War (presumably by gas) and this may have been a contributory factor in his death at what was a relatively young age.

John Burfield


Pte Edwin Thomas Howell 8th Btn Somerset Light Infantry (d.31st July 1917)

My Nan never knew her Dad, Edwin Howell, she was born in 1916 and he died on 31st July 1917. I know little of his actual death; only the officers seem to get mentioned in the war diaries so he is not mentioned by name.



Pte. Walter Stanley Gregory 8th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry (d.1st July 1916)

One of the tasks of the 8th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry on 1st July 1916 was to assist in the capture of Lozenge Alley and part of Lozenge Wood. Private Gregory was killed north of Fricourt on that day in action with the 21st Division. It seems that 144 soldiers of his division were killed that day.

He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial. He was one of 168 Old Boys of Taunton School who gave their lives in the Great War - three of whom died on 1 July 1916, the first day of the Somme. They will be especially remembered at the School Commemoration this year, which falls on 1 July, the centenary of the battle. Unfortunately, few details of Walter Gregory's schooldays are known and there is no photograph. He attended Taunton School, probably as a boarder, from 1896-98 when the school was still known as Independent College.

John Brown


Pte. Herbert John Hill 12th Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.27th Dec 1917)

Herbert John Hill is listed on the Creech St Michael war memorial. I am researching all the names as the parish has no record of the men who served in the armed forces and I want to fill an important gap in the history of the village. Can anyone provide any information.

Eric Chown


Pte. Arthur Henry Carcary 6th Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.6th July 1915)

Although Arthur Carcary was from Kent, he enlisted in Taunton. He died, accidentally drowned, believed in Yser Canal, on 6th July 1915. His name is inscribed on the Menin Gate, Ypres. He was the son of David and Christina Carcary.

Dan Green


L/Cpl. Thomas Bevan 7th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry

Thomas Bevan served with the 7th Battalion, Somerset Light Infantry. He was injured in lower leg by shrapnel on the 29th of May.

Darran Hughes


Sgt. Arthur Frederick Curry 1st Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.26th August 1914)

Sgt. Curry was killed at Le Cateau on 26th August 1914.

Kim Scratchley


Capt. G. D. J. McMurtie 6th Btn. Somerset Light Infantry

Captain McMurtie was a prisoner at Graudenz POW Camp.


Pte. Edwin Percy Lott Horne 1st Btn. Somerset Light Infantry (d.17th July 1917)

Edwin Horne served with the 1st Btn Somerset Light Infantry.

Martin Reeves


Pte. Frederick Charles Beck 7th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry

Frederick Beck was my grandfather. He and three of his brothers John Samuel, the eldest born 1882, Charles and George. All enlisted together in Taunton on the 23rd September 1914. The four brothers were assigned to the newly formed 7/SLI.

On the 24th July 1916, the Battalion moved by train from Amesbury to Southampton, sailing for Boulogne that evening. Of the four brothers on board the ship, all assigned to the Battalion's B Company, one would be killed within two months.

On the evening of Monday 12th of September, the Battalion held the front line just east of Cordonnerie Farm, close to the hamlet of Petillon, and about five miles south west of Armentieres. This was the very first occasion on which 7/SLI held the line in its own right. The Germans exploded two closely spaced mines directly under the men of B Company, creating a forty yard crater. Five men were killed and seventeen injured. Intense shelling and mortar fire continued for the next three days, on 14th of September George Beck was killed. He was 29, and is buried in the Rue Petillon Military Cemetery, just a mile or so from where he fell.

Frederick Beck was wounded in action on 1st of October, on which date 7/SLI made a daring advance at Le Transloy (Somme area). According to his medical record, Frederick was buried by a shell, suffering injuries to his wrist and knee, after long spells in hospital, Frederick was graded as 'C3' meaning no longer considered fit for active service overseas. He then served with Agricultural Companies of the Labour Corps, firstly with No. 449 Company. Then No. 445 Company.

I don't know much about his brothers Charles and John Samuel, as their records were destroyed by fire. They both returned home to Somerset after the war. Frederick returned home to his wife and eight children. He passed away in 1974 age 91

At the time his brothers sailed to France, Harry Beck their younger brother, still only sixteen, perhaps a wilful attempt to prove himself the equal of his brothers, had already enlisted himself. Drafted to join 8/SLI on 4 October. Amongst a contingent of 248 NCOs and men as that Batallion refitted in the French town of Borre. Surely reflecting on the wisdom of his decision to enlist. Knowing as he would have done of his brothers death. His father wrote a letter: I have a son in France, his age being sixteen. Perhaps you may kindly consider the case as all my sons(five) has been sent to the front, one being killed in France. Army bureaucracy meant that Harry was not finally discharged until 25th of February 1916.

Andrea Beck

Want to know more about Somerset Light Infantry ?

There are:34650 pages and articles tagged Somerset Light Infantry available in our Library
  These include information on officers, regimental histories, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.

Recomended Reading.

Available at discounted prices.

History of the Somerset Light Infantry (Prince Albert's) 1914-1919

Everard Wyrall

Wyrall arranges his record of the regiment in chronological order, following the course of the war from the arrival of the1st Battalion in France. As he describes the operations and events he indicates in the margin the date of the action he is writing about with the identity of the battalion involved; operations in other theatres have their own chapters. Appendices list, by name, Honours and Awards including Mention in Despatches, promotions for service in the field, summary of other rank casualties (deaths) in each battalion (officers are totalled together) and brief records of service.
A Strange War

C P Mills

A Strange War, by C.P.Mills, covers the History of the 2/5th Battalion Somerset Light Infantry.
More information on:

A Strange War


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