[Skip to content]

  • Photograph of John Windley is courtesy of the Sherwood Foresters Regiment roll of honour
Person Details
Radford Nottingham
John was the eldest son of Alfred and Phoebe Windley (née Gray). Alfred was born in Radford, Nottingham, in about 1854 and Phoebe was born in Ireland in about 1852. They were married at Nottingham St Matthew on 23 November 1878 and had six children who were all born in Nottingham and baptised at Nottingham St Paul: Helen (reg. Helen but known as Ellen) b. 1881 bap. (Ellen) January 1882; Sarah Ann birth registered 1884 (J/F/M) bap. March 1884; Enoch b. 1886 bap. November 1886 d. 1887; John b. 1888 bap. November 1888; Harry birth registered 1891 (J/F/M) bap. April 1891 and Alfred b. 1893 bap. October 1893. Alfred and Phoebe were living on West Street, Nottingham, when their two daughters were baptised, at James Yard, Nottingham, when Enoch was baptised in 1886 but had moved to Convent Street by the time John was baptised in 1888 and were registered there on the 1891 Census. The family was living at 11 Union Terrace, Nottingham, in 1901: Albert, a point and spring maker in the lace industry although previously employed as a paint maker (1891), Phoebe, Ellen and Sarah who were both machinists, John (12), Harry (10) and Alfred (7). Also in the household was a boarder, Charles Burrows (4). Phoebe died in 1907 and in 1911 her widowed husband was living at 17 Enoch Terrace, St Anns Well Road, Nottingham. Also in the home was Alice Forsey (43), married, who was described as a domestic servant ('at home'). The eldest daughter, Ellen, had married Arthur Leatherland in 1906 and she and her husband, a boot maker, were living on Gawthorne Street, Nottingham. Also in the household were her brother Harry, a printer's labourer, and her brother John's daughter, Annie Elizabeth (b. 1908), who was probably in the care of the Leatherlands. Ellen and Arthur later moved to 90 Sandon Street, New Basford. Harry continued to live with the couple and named his sister as his next of kin when he enlisted. Sarah Ann was living on Rutland Terrace, Bunbury Street, Meadows, Nottingham, with her husband Albert Dale, a bobbin and carriage hand, whom she had married in 1907. Also in the household was her youngest brother, Alfred, who was a beer bottler. Sarah and her husband later moved to Coventry but Alfred remained in Nottingham and married Mabel Belshaw in 1916. John had married Nellie Gertrude Whiting in 1908 (J/A/S) and their daughter Annie Elizabeth was born later that year. In 1911, John, an iron moulder, and Nellie, a lace clipper, were living at 8 Franchise Terrace, Westminster Street, Nottingham, although their daughter was living with John's married sister, Ellen Leatherland. Nellie died later that year aged 24. John married secondly Fanny Pacey in 1912. They had two children, Fanny G. who was born in 1912 and died the following year, and Walter who was born in February 1914. A notice of John's death in the local paper in 1917 gave his address as 90 Sandon Street, New Basford, the home of his sister Ellen Leatherland. John's pension record card stated that his widow Fanny had not been traced when the dependants' pension was awarded. Two guardians had been appointed for his two children. Helen Leatherland (John's married sister) of 90 Sandon Street, New Basford, was appointed Annie's guardian and Mrs E Sherman of 37 Gauntly Street, Hyson Green, was appointed Walter's guardian. Each guardian was awarded a pension of 7 shillings a week, first payments made 21st January 1918. John's widow, Fanny, probably married Sill Hemingray in 1923 (reg. Nottingham) and they had a son, Raymond b. 1927 d. 1928. Fanny also had a son, Eric (Windley) b. 1921 who may have been an invalid as he was recorded on the 1939 Register of England and Wales as an inmate (incapacitated) at Aston Hall, Derbyshire. Fanny probably died in 1954. John's brothers, Harry and Alfred, also died in the war, Harry in 1915 and Alfred in 1917 (see 'Extra information' and records on this Roll of Honour). Alfred Windley snr. died in 1929.
1911 - he was an iron moulder.
14 Jul 1917
23246 - CWGC Website
New Basford Nottingham. Enlisted Nottingham.
1/7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
Sergeant John Windley enlisted at Nottingham, serving with the 1/7 battalion Sherwood Foresters Regiment. He landed in France on 25th February 1915. John died of wounds on 14th July 1917 at No 7 General Hospital, France, and is buried in Longuenesse (St Omer) Souvenir Cemetery, France (grave ref. IV.C.57). He qualified for the 1915 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. CWGC - History of Longuenesse (St Omer) Souvenir Cemetery (extract): 'St. Omer was the General Headquarters of the British Expeditionary Force from October 1914 to March 1916. Lord Roberts died there in November 1914. The town was a considerable hospital centre with the 4th, 10th, 7th Canadian, 9th Canadian and New Zealand Stationary Hospitals, the 7th, 58th (Scottish) and 59th (Northern) General Hospitals, and the 17th, 18th and 1st and 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Stations all stationed there at some time during the war ... The cemetery takes its names from the triangular cemetery of the St. Omer garrison, properly called the Souvenir Cemetery (Cimetiere du Souvenir Francais) which is located next to the War Cemetery.' (www.cwgc.org)
His brother Rifleman Harry Windley was reported missing on 25 September 1915 but his death was not confirmed until around November 1915. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Ploegsteert Memorial. (See record on this Roll of Honour) His brother Alfred served with the 2/7th Battalion Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derbys) Regiment. He was killed in action on 29th September 1917 and is buried in White House Cemetery, St Jean les Ypres. (See record on this Roll of Honour) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Roll of Honour,’ 20 July 1917: ‘Windley. Died of wounds, July 14th, Sergeant Jack Windley, Sherwood Foresters, 90 Sandon-street, New Basford. They miss him most who loved him best. From his loving sister Nellie, and Arthur [Leatherland], also his two little children, Annie and Sonny [Walter].’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Roll of Honour,’ 20 July 1917: ‘Windley. Died of wounds in France, July 14th, Sergt. Jack Windley, Sherwood Foresters, beloved brother of Mrs [Sarah] and Mr Dale, Coventry. A noble life laid down.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Roll of Honour,’ 20 July 1917: ‘Windley. Died of wounds, July 14th, Sergeant Jack Windley, Sherwood Foresters, aged 29. Peace after pain. Loving brother and sister, Mabel and Alf (in France) [KIA 29 September 1917].’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Registers of Soldiers' Effects: his children, Annie (b. 1908) and Walter (b. 1914) were his legatees. Both children had named guardians, Annie's was her aunt, Helen (Ellen) Leatherland, and Walter's, Mrs E Sherman. (See 'Family history)
Remembered on


  • Photograph of John Windley is courtesy of the Sherwood Foresters Regiment roll of honour
    John Windley - Photograph of John Windley is courtesy of the Sherwood Foresters Regiment roll of honour
  • Buried in Longuenesse (St Omer) Souvenir Cemetery, France. (www.cwgc.org)
    John Windley - Buried in Longuenesse (St Omer) Souvenir Cemetery, France. (www.cwgc.org)