Private, 46948, William Sayers (18) – Died of Wounds

19th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry, 29th September 1918 

Grave of William Sayers at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. – ©International Wargrave Photography Project.

Military and Civilian Research

  • William Sayers was born in the first quarter of 1900 at Pendleton, Lancashire. His Army Attestation Record has his date of birth as 4 December 1899. (I’m not convinced this is the actual birth date, he may have given an earlier date in order to join the army earlier.)
  • 11 July 1900 – He was baptised at Stowell Memorial Church, Salford.
  • 13 August 1917 – He enlisted at Rotherham and was placed on the Reserve. At that time his description was given as follows :- Height – 5’8″, Weight – 123lbs, Chest – 36″ with 4″ expansion, Hair – Brown, Eyes – Brown, Complexion – Fair, Religion – Church of England. He gave his occupation as Screen Hand.
  • 4 January 1918 – He joined the Regular Army and was re-examined at Pontefract, West Yorkshire and was placed into the 53rd Battalion, Durham Light Infantry and given the service number 170443. This was a battalion for (Young Soldiers) who had reached the age of 18 years and 1 month. They conducted their basic training before moving onto a (Graduated) battalion where they completed their training. This training was held at Rugeley Camp, Cannock Chase, Staffordshire.
  • 19 April 1918 – Transferred to the 52nd (Graduated) Battalion, Durham Light Infantry to complete his training at Stockton-on-Tees.
  • 26 July 1918 – He transferred with his battalion to France from Folkstone to Boulogne.
  • 2 August 1918 – He joins the 19th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry as number 46948.
  • 29 September 1918 – He died from wounds at No.2 Canadian Casualty Clearing Station, Anvin, France and was buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. He had been in ‘Z’ Company, 19th Durham Light Infantry.
  • His property containing Letters, Photos, a religious book, 2 postcards, a charm and pencil were returned to his mother following his death.
  • In the Register of Soldiers Effects, his mother Sarah was the sole legate to the compensation payments for his death.
CASUALTY CLEARING STATIONS (CO 3151) A panoramic photograph showing wounded British and German soldiers as they await treatment in the sunshine outside a Casualty Clearing Station (CCS) near Duisans, September 1918. On the left, a large tent can be seen and several huts are visible on the right. Copyright: © IWM.


William Sayers was born at Pendleton, Lancashire, in the first quarter 1900. The following family information is taken from the 1911 Census and his Army Service Record.

His family is shown as follows :-

  • Father – William Sayers, born c.1879 at Salford, Lancashire. – Brewery Labourer.
  • Mother – Sarah Jane Sayers, born c.1880 at Langdale, Yorkshire.
  • Sister – Lydia, born c.1902 at Pendleton, Lancashire.
  • Brother- Farry, born c.1906 at Weaste, Salford, Lancashire.
  • Brother – Thom, born c.1908 at Langdale, Yorkshire.
  • Sister – Frances, born c.1911 at Salford, Lancashire.
  • Sister – Ada, born c.1913
  • Brother – Frank, born c.1914
Family Grave of William Sayers at St. Leonard New Church, Rotherham, South Yorkshire. © Mark Pepper


  • In July 1900 at the time of his baptism his address was given as 10 Embridge Street, Salford, Lancashire.
  • The 1901 Census gives William and his family’s address as 13 Ashantee Street, Pendleton, Lancashire.
  • The 1911 Census gives the family address of William Sayers as 35 Robinson Street, Regent Road, Salford, Greater Manchester.
  • The Parental address during his attestation into the army in 1917 and following his death was given as 28 Doncaster Road, Whinney Hill, Rotherham.


William Sayers was awarded the, Victory and the British War Medals for his service in the Great War.


William Sayers is honoured and remembered on a number of memorials. They are as follows :- 

  • Thrybergh Working Mens Club, Roll of Honour, Thrybergh, Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
  • St. Peters, Whinney Hill Conventional District Memorial Window and Tablet, Thrybergh, Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
  • Dalton Main Colliery Ltd, Silverwood and Roundwood Collieries Memorial Column. Previous location – near Silverwood Colliery, Thrybergh, Rotherham. Current Location – Thrybergh Parish Hall, Park Lane, Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
  • Thrybergh Parish Hall, Roll of Honour, Park Lane, Thybergh, Rotherham.

Links to Additional Information


  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
  • Medal Index Card.
  • Soldiers Died in the Great War.
  • Register of Soldiers Effects.
  • Find a Grave – William Sayers.
  • Medal Roll – Durham Light Infantry – Victory and British War Medal.
  • 1901 Census.
  • 1911 Census.
  • Stowell Memorial Church, Salford – Baptisms.
  • Military Pension Cards – William Sayers
  • Weekly Casualty List dated 5 November 1918.
  • British Army Service Record.

Published by The Moon's a Balloon

I am based in the north of Scotland in the small village of Aberlour. Having served in the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards in the 1980's, I have a keen interest in military history, in particular the stories of those who served. I was a remote volunteer for the Imperial War Museum website, however that centenary project has now finished and I felt the need to continue with my research and hopefully it will be of interest to others.

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