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  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone marking the grave of William and Frank Wakelin at Nottingham General Cemetery. 

Courtesy of Peter Gillings
Person Details
31 Jul 1859
Ilkeston Derbyshire
William Wakelin was born in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, in 1859. He married Kate Maria Hogg in 1884 and they had twelve children, eleven of whom survived childhood. The eldest child, Mary, was born before their marriage. Their surviving children were: Mary Hogg (k/a Wakelin) b. Alfreton 1881, Arthur William b. 1886, Sarah Jane b. 1888, William b. 1889 (reg. 1890), Harriet b. 1892, Alfred b. 1895 and Kate Millicent b. 1896 who were born in Bulwell, Nottingham, and Gertrude b. 1898, Frank b. 1901 (reg. A/M/J), Ada b. 1903 and Harry b. 1906 who were born in Nottingham. The family lived at 297 Quarry Road, Bulwell, in 1891: William, a coal miner, Kate, and their three children Mary, Arthur and Sarah together with William's brother Francis (17) who was also a coal miner. By 1901 William and Kate had moved to the Meadows, Nottingham where they lived at 14 Royston Terrace, Hawthorne Street. Seven of their eight children were living at home: Arthur, a coal miner, Sarah, William, Harriet, Alfred, Kate and Gertrude. The eldest daughter, Mary, has not yet been traced after 1891. By 1911 the couple were living at 4 Hawthorne Terrace, Hawthorne Street. William was working at Clifton Colliery. Only eight of their eleven children were still at home: Sarah and Harriet who were machinists, Alfred a carter, Kate a hosiery worker, and Gertrude, Frank, Ada and Harry who were school age. Arthur William had married Eliza Ann Chambers at St Wilfrid parish church, Wilford, Nottingham, in 1908 and in 1911 they were living at 15 Royston Terrace, Hawthorn Street, with their two children Edith and Horace. William jnr. was serving with the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards and was based at Wellington Barracks, London. He had previously served in the Militia, enlisting in Nottingham on 23 July 1905 joining the 4th Battalion Sherwood Foresters (974 Private). At the time he enlisted he was a coal miner at Clifton Colliery and living with his parents at 14 Royston Terrace. William completed his annual training obligations until he obtained a free discharge on 14 June 1908; this may have been when he joined the regular army. William and Kate later moved to 69 Radcliffe Street, Trent Bridge, Nottingham, and this was their address when William was discharged from the army on 13 August 1917. William died in August 1920 and his son Frank died in October the same year. Kate was living with three of her children, Ada, Harry and William at the time of the 1921 Census (transcript not sighted). As well as Arthur, at least four of her other children were now married; Alfred to Hannah Milnes in 1914, Kate in 1916 to Percy Jackson, Sarah to Edward Gamble in 1918, and Gertrude to James Whitehead in 1919. Harriet has not yet been traced on the 1921 Census, but she married Ernest Charlton in 1923 (reg. Nottingham). Kate Marie died in 1933.
Coal miner. In 1911 he was working at Clifton Colliery, Nottingham.
08 Aug 1920
61
7526
Private
Royal Defence Corps
He enlisted 13th July 1911 in the 7th (Robin Hood) Battalion Notts & Derby Regiment and later transferred to No.4 Supernumery Company 2/7th (Robin Hood) Battalion. He was compulsorily transferred to Royal Defence Corps on 29th April 1916 and renumbered 4248. His last transfer was to 161st Protection Company Royal Defence Corps. William was discharged (disability, myalgia) on 13 August 1917 and awarded a weekly pension of 8 pence for life. He was issued with War Badge No. 1245. William died on 8 August 1920 and was buried in Nottingham General Cemetery (grave no. 9083). His son Frank served in the Scots Guards, probably enlisting after the Armistice, and died on 31 October 1920. He was buried with his father. Headstone inscription: '4248 Private W Wakelin Royal Defence Corps 8th August 1920 age (-). 2683359 Guardsman F Wakelin Scots Guards 31st October 1920 Age 19’ (See 'Extra information')
Guardsman Frank Wakelin died at Windsor King Edward Hospital on 31 October 1920 from gunshot wounds (self-inflicted). (See record on this Roll of Honour) Two of William's older sons served in the war: Arthur William served with the Royal Garrison Artillery (18526 Gunner) and was awarded the Military Medal. He survived the war and died in 1930. (See record on this Roll of Honour) Alfred joined the Grenadier Guards (15276 Private) in May 1911 and served with the 3rd Battalion and later the 5th (Reserve) Battalion. He served in France from August 1914 but was medically evacuated to the UK shortly afterwards, suffering from pneumonia. Alfred probably then served at home until transferring to the Army Reserve in December 1916; he had undergone surgery at Bagthorpe Military Hospital, Nottingham, in the May and was medically unfit for further service. However, he was transferred to colliery work (his former civilian occupation) and then to munitions work at the Chilwell shell filling factory. William's military record named his wife Kate Marie as his next of kin and also four dependants, his youngest children Frank, Ada and Harry, and Clifford George Wakelin described as an 'illegitimate dependant.' Clifford, who was born in 1911 (O/N/D), was probably the son of William's daughter Sarah Jane. Sarah Jane married Edward Gamble in 1918 and Clifford was recorded living with them at the time of the 1921 Census.
Remembered on

Photos

  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone marking the grave of William and Frank Wakelin at Nottingham General Cemetery. 

Courtesy of Peter Gillings
    William Wakelin - Commonwealth War Graves Commission headstone marking the grave of William and Frank Wakelin at Nottingham General Cemetery. Courtesy of Peter Gillings