1918-2008: Ninety Years of Remembrance

Soldier Record

William Renshall

Contributed by: Ann Renshall, on 2008-11-08

No portrait available
First Name William
Surname Renshall
Year of Birth 1889
Year of Death 1917
Regiment South Lancashire Regiment
Place of Wartime Residence Liverpool, Lancashire

William's Story

William was a compositor on the Liverpool Daily Post. Although he was in a reserved occupation, he enlisted as a volunteer on the 15 November 1915 and was mobilized on the 18 October 1916. He was posted to a pioneer battalion in the Monmouthshire Regiment.

The battalion embarked for France on 30 June 1917. On the 28 July 1917 William was transferred to the 1/4 Pioneer Battalion of the South Lancashire Regiment. Two days later the third battle of Ypres began. William was killed in action on the 2 August 1917. He was aged 27 years and 11 months. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Menin Gate. However a letter from the Commanding Officer of the 4th Battalion the Prince of Wales Volunteers, dated 11 August 1925, says that during the war a currently-serving NCO had been sent to Brandhoek to identify Private Renshall's body. Although the NCO believed the body to be that of Private Renshall, it was so badly disfigured that he could not be absolutely certain. However it was assumed that Private Renshall was buried at Brandhoek.

There was a field hospital at Brandhoek, near Ypres. The dead were buried in three nearby cemeteries.

The following obituary is to be found in the Minute Book of the Liverpool Daily Post National Graphical Association:

'Information has been received of the death in France of Private William Renshall. He was a member of a pioneer battalion, and while working in a front-line trench a shell burst a few yards away and killed him. Private Renshall entered the "Daily Post" office as a boy, and after his apprenticeship became a highly-respected member of the composing-room staff. He was a young man of much promise, a member of the local branch of the Typographical Association, and deeply interested in the Workers' Educational Association movement, with which he was connected.'

Other memories

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