World War One

Zeppelin Raids

In 1916, the Black Country witnessed, and suffered directly from the affects of war when two German Zeppelins carried out raids.

Read about the 1916 Zeppelin air raids over the Black Country.   Read about the airship onslaught which rocked Midland towns
The War Memorial

Wednesbury War Memorial.

The middle part of the memorial.

Wednesbury War Memorial in Walsall Street, on the corner of Hollies Drive was officially unveiled on the 4th November 1926.

A large number of people attended the ceremony including members of the general public, boy scouts, girl guides, council officials, local magistrates, subscribers to the memorial, and ex-servicemen, along with a guard of honour.

Unfortunately many names were missing from the original plaques and so several years ago the Wednesbury War Memorial Campaign Group set up a committee to carry out research, and produce a new, more comprehensive list of the fallen, which eventually included the names of 1047 people.

A total of 424 names were added to the original list of those who had died in the two World Wars, and new plinths and plaques were produced by W. E. Jones, Monumental Masons.

Around £57,000 pounds had been raised for the project thanks to Sandwell Council and a number of subscribers.

The new plaques were unveiled on the afternoon of Sunday 5th May, 2013. The event, which included a fly-past by an RAF Dakota began with a parade starting at the Town Hall. A large number of people watched the parade and attended the ceremony.

A new book of remembrance was opened at the event because the old book, kept at St. Bart's Church had excluded Catholics. The researchers were greatly helped by the records of the War Graves Commission.

The New Plaques

Plaque one, World War One.
Plaque two, World War One.
Plaque three, World War One.
Plaque four, World War One.
Plaque five, World War One.
Plaque six, World War One.
Plaque seven, World War Two.
Plaque eight, World War Two.
Some of the people whose names are on the war memorial

Second Lieutenant T. J. B. Troman.

Second Lieutenant Thomas Joseph Barnsley Troman of the North Staffordshire Regiment was killed in action by a shell on 14th July, 1916 at the age of 26. He was in command of a machine gun section and fell while leading his men.

He was the second son of Henry Troman of Jesmond, Brunswick Park Road, Wednesbury, and a talented organist. He had been organist at St. Bart's Church, and Wednesbury Borough Organist. He had hoped to go into the church.

Lieutenant Gavin Tenison Royle Knowles of the South Staffordshire Regiment was killed in action on the Somme, in France on 1st July, 1916 at the age of 21.

He was the younger son of Mr. and Mrs. B. C. Knowles of Caldwell House, Wednesbury, and grandson of a former Mayor, Alderman John Knowles.

Lieutenant Gavin T. R. Knowles.

Second Lieutenant Len Joynson.

Second Lieutenant Leonard G. B.  Joynson of the Darlaston Territorials died in France in February, 1915 while instructing his men in the use of a bomb, which accidentally exploded.

He was the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. C. W. D. Joynson and was training to be an architect.

Captain Will Millner of the local Territorials was killed in France on 13th October, 1915 whilst leading his men in the attack on the Hohenzollern Redoubt.

He was the eldest son of Mrs. H. D. Millner of the Dartmouth Hotel, Wednesbury and was the finest marksman that the town ever produced.

Captain Will Millner.

Company Sergeant Major F. Bytheway, D.C.M.

Company Sergeant Major F. Bytheway, D.C.M. was killed during action on the Somme in 1916, at the age of 29. He had been awarded a Distinguished Conduct Medal after carrying his machine gun in the firing line for three quarters of a mile. He then continued to carry the gun until the end of the attack by which time his ammunition had long run-out. He received the award at Walsall in December 1915.

His brother ran The Stores on Holyhead Road.

Sergeant Bernard Fitzpatrick, D.C.M. of the 2nd South Staffordshire Regiment was killed in the advance at Loos at the end of September, 1915.

He also received the Russian decoration, the Cross of St. George.

Sergeant B. Fitzpatrick, D.C.M.

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