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  • Buried in Naval Trench Cemetery Gavrelle, Pas de Calais, France. (www.cwgc.org)
Person Details
15 Apr 1892
Hull Yorkshire
William Robert was the son of Robert and Sarah Ann Featherstone (née Waddingham). His father Robert was born in Holme on Spalding Moor, Yorkshire (East Riding), in about 1870 and his mother Sarah Ann Waddingham in Hull, Yorkshire (East Riding) in January 1870. They were married in Newbold Church on 18 March 1891 (reg. York) and had five children, one of whom died in infancy: William Robert b. Hull 16 April 1892, Harold Ernest b. South Cave birth registered 1894 (J/F/M), Minnetta May b. South Cave 1895, Madge b. South Cave 1895 d. 1895 and Herbert Waddingham b. Hull 1899. In 1891 Robert (21), an inn keeper, and his wife were living in North Newbold, Yorkshire. By 1901 they had moved to 35 Marmaduke Street, Hull, where Sarah Ann, a grocer shopkeeper, was recorded on the census with their four surviving children William (8), Harold (7), Minnetta (6) and Herbert (1). Robert had attested in the Imperial Yeomanry on 1 March 1901 and served in South Africa from 23 March 1901-23 August 1902. He was discharged on 30 August 1902. (See 'Extra information') By 1911 the family was living at Syke Breck Farm, Lower Blidworth, Mansfield. Robert's occupation was given as farmer (employer). In the home on the night of the census were his wife, William and Harold who were both farm workers, Minnetta a dairy worker and Herbert (11). Also in the household was Charles Griffin (21) the farm foreman. William's RND record noted that the relative notified of his death was his married sister, Minnetta White, of Bonemill Farm, Ollerton. Minnetta had married Ernest White in 1912. The report of William's death in a local paper in 1917 mentioned that his brother 'H Featherstone' was serving in the South Notts Hussars. No WW1 military record has yet been found for either Harold or Herbert. However, it is likely that Herbert, who worked for the Post Office in Liverpool from at least 1922, served in the Royal Engineers (Postal Unit) in the Second World War from 1942-1945. Sarah Ann Featherstone, a widow, was recorded on the 1939 England & Wales Register living in Basford.
1911 - farm worker. On enlistment employed by Mr White, farmer (probably of Maida Farm, Ollerton)
20 Aug 1917
533161 - CWGC Website
Royal Marine Light Infantry
Royal Marine Light Infantry - 2nd RM Bn RN Division. William Robert Featherstone enrolled in the RMLI (Portsmouth Division) on 10 November 1914 on a Short Service Engagement. Portsmouth and Plymouth RMLI Battalions were amalgamated and renamed 2nd Bn the Royal Marines and came under 188th Brigade 63rd (Royal Naval) Division. The Division was transferred to the Army in 1916 and served on the Western Front for the remainder of the war. William served with the 2nd Royal Marine Bn RND in France and was killed in action on 20 August 1917. He is buried in Naval Trench Cemetery Gavrelle, Pas de Calais, France (grave reference: D 11). CWGC: History of Naval Trench Cemetery (extract): 'Gavrelle was captured by the Royal Naval Division on 23 April 1917, lost on 28 March 1918, and reoccupied by the 51st (Highland) Division on the following 27 August. Naval Trench Cemetery is named from a second-line trench made by the 63rd Division in the summer of 1917, occupied as headquarters by the Queen's Westminsters in March 1918, and retaken by the 6th Black Watch on 26 August 1918. It was made by fighting units between April and November 1917.'
William's father, Robert Featherstone (30), enlisted in the Imperial Yeomanry (32317 Private) on 1 March 1901 and served in South Africa from 23 March with the 3rd Bn. He was discharged at Aldershot on 30 August 1902 having returned to the UK on 24 August. He qualified for the Queen's South Africa Medal (1901 and 1902) and was 'mentioned for gallantry in field CinC's Despatches'. Mansfield Reporter, 20 April 1917: ‘Ollerton. OCC Parcels Fund. Letters acknowldedging the safe recipt of the Easter parcels have been received from the following: France: Privates … WR Featherstone (RND Train) … Home Camps: Privates … H Featherstone (South Notts Hussars).’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Mansfield Reporter, 12 October 1917: ‘Ollerton. Killed in Action. News came to hand last week that another Ollerton soldier had made the great sacrifice. Mrs White, Maida Farm, received intelligence that her nephew (sic), Private WR Featherstone, of the Royal Marine Light Infantry, had fallen in action in France on August 20th. Private Featherstone was 25 years of age, and was one of the first to answer his country’s call in the early stages of the war, and previously worked on Mr White’s farm. His brother, Trumpeter H Featherstone is in the South Notts Hussars.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Note: Maida Farm was on the Rufford Abbey Estate, Nottinghamshire. RND record: relative notified, sister Minnetta White, Bonemill Farm, Ollerton, Notts. Note: possibly Bone Mill Farm, Clarborough nr. Welham, Ollerton WW1 Pension Ledgers: mother Sarah Ann Featherstone
Remembered on


  • Buried in Naval Trench Cemetery Gavrelle, Pas de Calais, France. (www.cwgc.org)
    Robert William Featherstone - Buried in Naval Trench Cemetery Gavrelle, Pas de Calais, France. (www.cwgc.org)