Those who Served

John Waddington

Born Heapey, Living in Whittle le Woods

Died of Wounds:  21 June 1917

France and Flanders

Reg no - 25365

Rank : Private

Enlisted at Chorley

9th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment


The 9th Battalion took part in the Battle of Messines


He is buried at Kandahar Farm Cemetery, Wulverghem (now Wulvergem)


The headstone notes on CWGC site mention a Mrs Issabelle Waddington,

c/o Mrs I Robinson, Moor View, Blackburn Road, Heapey


No inscription





John Ward

Born Blackburn

Killed in Action: 2 July 1916

France and Flanders

Reg no - 15351

Rank: Private

Enlisted at Chorley

11 Battalion East Lancashire Regiment


Another member of the Accrington Pals


Specifically, he was in the Chorley Pals and Killed in Action  with the attack on Serre


Son of Thomas and Alice Ward of 2 County Terrace, Clayton le Woods


His brother Richard was also Killed in Action (see below) 


His name is on the Thiepval Memorial


As of 30\11\2020 whilst sifting through old picture files from over 10 years ago I found a picture of him 




Richard Ward

Born Blackburn

Killed in Action: 30 July 1916

France and Flanders

Reg no -  18117

Rank : Private

Enlisted at Blackburn

2 Battalion Royal Scots Fusiliers


Richard Ward and the 2nd Battalion, were involved in the attack on Guillemont.

They assembled in an area east of Trones Wood, moving forward along the

Guillemont Road.

They entered the village from the south west taking a few casualties.

Later in the attack they became cut off

650 casualties out of attacking force of 750, majority dead or missing.


Brother of the above

Son of Thomas and Alice Ward of 2 County Terrace, Clayton le Woods


Married Cordelia Ellen Carr, St Matthews , Blackburn on 13 September 1913


Husband of Cordelia Ellen Hinton (formerly Ward), of 146, Higher Audley St., Blackburn.


Think they had a son Frank Clifford Ward in 1914 , he married Ella Ashton at

St Matthews, Blackburn in 1935. 


His name is on the Thiepval Memorial


Thank you to Allison Aspden (nee ward) for emailing me and providing

extra information. I have added it to the comments page.





James Waring

Born Whittle le Woods

Killed in Action: 11 April 1918

France and Flanders

Reg no: 19354

Rank: Private

Enlisted at Chorley

1 Battalion South Wales Borderers

1st Bn. attached Trench Mortar Bty


A Weaver by trade

He played the piano and the accordion


James Waring enlisted in the 1st Btn in March 1915, he was posted out to France as part of a replacement draft on 18th May 1915.

He only served with the 1st Btn, spending some time attached to the 7th Entrenching Btn and at the time he was killed attached to the 3rd Brigade Trench Mortar Battery.

As regards to his location, the 1st Btn had left Belgium on the 8th April 1918, the Battle of the Lys started whilst the men were still moving south, on the afternoon of the 11th April the men received orders to man the La Bassee canal defences east of Bethune


Extracts from the War Diary say On the 8th April 1918, the 1 Battalion South Wales Borderers set off on a 5-hour train journey from Fouquereil and then marched to Beuvry.

They arrived at a comfortable billet.

On the 9th April 1918, they were woken by shelling on the village, which lasted until 10.30 am.

The Germans had attacked the line from La Bassee Canal to Armentiers.

On the 10th April 1918, "the day was more or less quiet"

On the 11th April 1918, the Battalion was to relieve the front line at Hohenzollern.

But that order was cancelled at 12 noon and they were ordered to the Canal Line.

With two companies holding the line at La Bassee Canal and two companies

in support.



Son of William and Amelia Waring, of The Cross Keys Inn, Whittle-le-Woods.


His gravestone reads






Buried at Browns Road Military Cemetery, Festubert


The words are those of his father Mr William Waring




George Weaver

Born Farington

Killed in Action: 27 March 1918 ?

France and Flanders

Reg no - 28789

Rank : Private

Enlisted at Chorley

9th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment


Lodgers at Naylors Fold, Whittle le Woods in 1911 with his wife Alice and their children
Ethel and Mary Hannah. 

George was a labourer at the Cotton mill


George Henry Weaver was previously Pte. 23223, King's Liverpool Rgt. It looks like

he was a draft transferred to the 9th Cheshires from the King's, possibly early 1916.


His recorded date of death is wrong, most likely because of the heavy fighting.

The 9th Battalion had been mostly withdrawn from the area.

And the war diary will not have been backdated accurate.


He is buried at SERRE ROAD CEMETERY No.1
















William West


Born Whittle le Woods

Died of Wounds: 13 September 1915


Reg no - 11417

Rank: L / Cpl

Enlisted at Chorley

6 Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment


He may have been injured at the attack on Chunuk Bair

They were positioned at a place called the apex on the Chailnuk Dera.

The battalion after the attack was moved to Sulva and took over trenches at Green



He is buried at the HAIDAR PASHA CEMETERY, Istanbul, Turkey


As of 7\3\2021, I have found the information above in the picture






John Westby

Born Chorley, Living at Clayton le Woods

Killed in Action: 28 April 1917

France and Flanders

Reg no - 24981

Rank : Private

Enlisted at Preston

10 Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment


The 10th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment was in action on the 23rd April.

Taking part in the 37th Division attacks on GREENLAND HILL during the Second Battle of the Scarpe.

On the 27th tthey recieved orders to attack GREENLAND HILL at dawn the next day!

At roughly 4.30 am the battalion attacked and managed to capture one of their objectives.

From the moment they attacked they had come under heavy fire and suffered serious casualties.. and only had 1 officer survive.

Their attack had failed due to a combination of poor weather conditions and the snow would'nt of helped. The Germans were dug into some very well defended positions. 



Son of the late Joseph and Mary Ann Westby; husband of Mary Westby, of

6, Pleasant View, Clayton-le-Woods, Chorley, Lancs.


of 3 Brownley Street, Clayton le Woods,

left £199 10s 7d to his wife Mary as of a probate date of 3 Sep 1917


He married Mary Crook in 1909 at Chorley Reg Office

Children -


Mary Veronica Westby born 1911 Died 1911

Mary Veronica Westby born 1913 married James Clayton at Chorley Reg office in 1934


His name is on the Arras Memorial


Robert McClellan was in the same Battalion and also killed on the same day





Walter Westhead

Born Whittle le Woods

Killed in Action: 29 October 1918


Reg no - 34155

Rank : Private

Enlisted at Chorley

8 Battalion Yorkshire Hussars (Alexandra, Princes of Wales' Own)


Formerly 34627, Ches. Regt


On the same day of the Austro-Hungarians asking for an armistice!

Walter Westhead would be Killed in Action at the Battle of Vittorio Veneto, which

was fought from the 24th October 1918 to 3rd November 1918.


This battle helped to end the first world war less than two weeks later with the Armistice of 11 November.


New information found on 18 May 2020 -

His name appears in the  Yorkshire Regiment section of killed, in the Weekly Casualty List (War Office & Air Ministry) on Tuesday 31 December 1918.



Son of Thomas, a Cotton Weaver and Ellen, Naylors Fold in 1911 


He is buried at Plot 1. Row B. Grave 12. Tezze British Cemetery, Italy





John Whalley

Born Chorley

Killed in Action: 13 March 1916

France and Flanders

Reg no: 5929

Rank: Private

Enlisted at Manchester

"D" Coy, 20 Service Battalion Royal Fusiliers




He was a colorist with Jos Cunliffe at the Calico Printers in Whittle-le-Woods.

In 1909 he enrolled as an evening student in Science and Technology courses


Soon after war was declared, John Whalley would be enlisted into the recently formed 20th (3rd Public Schools) Service Battalion, Royal Fusiliers in the Sutton and Epsom area


Considering the 20th Battalion formed up at Epsom on 11 September 1914 it makes sense that when John Whalley enlisted he may have had a picture taken

A recently found picture of him is dated 5 February 1915, so he must have enlisted about that time, then starts doing his initial training.

Then as of 26 June 1915, the Battalion joined the 98th Brigade, 33rd Division and the Division are at Clipstone Camp, Near Mansfield, Nottinghamshire as of July.

In August they moved to Salisbury Plain for their final training and practices.


And John Whalley lands in France on 14th November 1915 and by the 21st they are at Morbecque

On the 27th of November the 20th (3rd Public Schools) Service Battalion, Royal Fusiliers are transferred to the 19th Brigade.


John Whalley is Killed in Action only 4 months later.  


From what I can extract from the War Diary-


At 5 pm on 12 March 1916 the 20th Service Battalion, Royal Fusiliers relieved

the 5th Scottish Rifles in the Cuinchy Section, Cambrin Support Point

Relief was completed at 11.35 pm.


On 13 March 1916, the enemy blew a mine at 6.15 am.

Crater ETNA and GIBBONS, No casualties. Somewhere near those previously blown

mine craters (c1915)

Attack by the enemy in the evening

Captain E.T Wright was killed by a rifle grenade, 2nd Lt T.S Pope wounded.

4 OR killed, 8 OR wounded.

(1 remaining at duty)

We hold near the lip of the crater.


Living at Windfield, Whittle le Woods


Effects £105 5s 10d to wife Elizabeth Whalley on 5 June 1916


Son of George and Elizabeth Whalley, of Chorley, Lancs


His father of 52 Preston Road would have this inscribed on his stone -




He is buried at Cambrin Churchyard Extension, Cambrin plot L1. 10C


I have his name on the 1914 - 1915 Roll of Honour for Whittle le Woods


His name is also commemorated at -

Manchester Municipal College of Technology Memorial in the Sackville Building, University of Manchester.




Mark Wilson

Born Blackburn

Died of Wounds: 31st March 1918

France and Flanders

Reg no - 24968

Rank: L\Cpl

Enlisted at Lancaster

8 Battalion, Kings Own Royal Lancaster Regiment



He married Alice Lyon on 2nd June 1902 at Christ Church, Blackburn.

As of 1916, they had children, Gladys, Albert, Ethel and Elenor. and lived at

26 Henrietta St, Blackburn.


He was a Paper Mill Labourer


Alice was living at No 3 Mount Pleasant, Rock Cottages, Whittle le Woods

as of his death


Enlisted on 25 August 1916


New information as of 19 May 2020-

His name is mentioned in the Kings Own Royal Lancaster Regiment list in the Weekly Casualty List (War Office & Air Ministry ) - Tuesday 04 June 1918 for the missing.


He died at the field hospital at Estrees on 31st March 1918


Alice would receive a war pension of 33/9 a week for herself and the four children.


He is buried at Cabaret Rouge British Cemetery


No inscription from his family





Robert Withnell

Born Whittle le Woods

Age: 43

Reg no - ME/184

Rank: Sapper

Enlisted at Joh-Burg as a guess

South Africa

South African Mounted Engineers




Robert Withnell was 42 years old on 6 February 1917 when he was taken on strength

They embarked on HMS Profession (?) on 22 March 1917


Died of Blackwater Fever: 19 January 1918 at Mingoyo, Tanzania







Lived at Town Lane, Whittle le Woods in 1901 with his wife Rachel, and their son

Norman William Withnell

He was a Carpenter and Joiner, and Rachel was a Cotton Winder.


Husband of Rachel Withnell, of Carwood Farm, Craighall, Johannesburg, South Africa

at the time of Roberts Death in 1918

Mrs R Withnell, PO BOX 5309, Johannesburg


He is buried at Dar Es Salaam War Cemetery, Tanzania


His son Norman William Withnell born 1898 Whittle le Woods, Lancashire and would marry Kathleen Mary Cooper, who was born 24 April 1898, Pretoria, Transvaal




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