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Person Details
George William was born in Nottingham in 1876 (registered Jul/Aug/Sep). No record has yet been found of his parents but his father had died by the time George re-enlisted in the Sherwood Foresters in 1914. However, a notice was put in the local paper at the time of George's death by his mother and sisters Jenny and Harriett. George (Bancroft) married Fanny Elizabeth Tansley, spinster, at St Augustine's Church, Nottingham, on 26 December 1903. According to the 1911 Census they had had five children born alive of whom only three were still living; Fanny Elizabeth (b. 22 June 1905), Ernest Frederick (b. 21 November 1908) and George Henry (b. 16 May 1910). However, another son, Joseph William, was born on 6 November 1911, after the census date. In 1911 George and Fanny were living at 8 Cambridge Yard, Cambridge Street, Radford, Nottingham, with their three children, Fanny (6), Ernest (3) and George (10 months). Also in the household was George's widowed mother-in-law, Emma Tansley (71, b. Coventry). George and Fanny's third son, Joseph William, was born later that year. Correspondence in George's service papers refer to his widow living at 10 Belle Vue Road by 1917. Fanny married Edward Lee in 1919 and they lived at 10 Belle Vue Road, St Ann's Well Road, Nottingham.
He had previously served (as 'Bates') in the Sherwood Foresters (time expired) before re-enlisting in the Territorial Force in May 1914. He was a goods porter (railway) in 1911 and a railway guard when he attested in May 1914.
16 Sep 1916
772343 - CWGC Website
He enlisted in Nottingham.
Lance Sergeant
2nd Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
He had previously served (as 'Bates') in the Sherwood Foresters (time expired) before re-enlisting in the Territorial Force in May 1914 for a period of four years. He was mobilized on 6 August 1914 and disembarked in France on 11 November 1914. He was promoted corporal on 9 September 1914 and appointed lance sergeant on 17 October 1914. However, in January 1915 he was tried by Field General Court Martial and sentenced to be reduced to the ranks for drunkenness; he served in the rank of private from 2 January 1915. The following month he was awarded 8 days Field Punishment No 1. for (1) absence (2) breaking out of his billet (9 February 1915-16 February 1915). In March the same year he was awarded 20 days Field Punishment No 1. by his CO for drunkenness (21 March 1915-9 April 1915). Notwithstanding this record, he was appointed (unpaid) lance corporal on 26 July 1915, appointed paid lance corporal on 9 August 1915, promoted corporal 30 November 1915 and appointed paid lance sergeant on 15 May 1916. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial. He served a total of 2 years 43 days and qualified for the 1914 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Army Reserve Attestation (1914) was in the name of 'Bates' (service number 4769). Nottingham Post notice (abridged), 3 November 1916: 'Bancroft. Killed in action on September 15th 1916, Sergeant George William Bancroft (known as Bates), Sherwood Foresters, aged 40, late of 10 Belle Vue Road. Mother, sister Jenny and Harriett.' Registers of Soldiers' Effects: His wife, Fanny, was his sole legatee. Note: the record was originally in the name of 'Bates' but this was deleted and 'Bancroft' inserted.
Remembered on