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WANLOCKHEAD WAR MEMORIAL

World War 1 - Detailed information
Compiled and copyright © John Harrison 2005

This memorial is near the old school in the middle of the village. It consists of a Great War Soldier standing with his rifle reversed in tribute to the casualties. He is standing on a plinth on the front of which are listed the casualties for the First World War. Those for the Second World War are on the reverse. The complete memorial is made from stone.

Wanlockhead is the highest village in Scotland, being situated some 1500 feet up in the Southern Uplands in Dumfries and Galloway. Formerly not only one of the major producers of lead between the seventeenth century and the Second World War, the area was also known for silver and some gold and was called ‘God’s Treasure House in Scotland’. Since the closure of the mine, industry has moved away, but a museum recalls the history of the village and the people who lived there.

Photographs Copyright © Eric McQuarrie 2005

THE
GREAT WAR
1914 - 1918

ERECTED BY
LOCAL PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTION
IN EVERLASTING MEMORY OF
THOSE MEN OF WANLOCKHEAD
WHO MADE THE SUPREME SACRIFICE

BLAIR Patrick Charles Bentley
Second Lieutenant, 5th Bn (att 1st Bn) Rifle Brigade. Killed in action at Boesinghe, near Ypres, 6th July 1915, commemorated on Special Memorial I. E. 10 in Talana Farm Cemetery as although he is known to have been buried there, his grave could not be located after the war. Also included on Family Memorial in Meadowfoot Cemetery, Wanlockhead. Born in Wanlockhead 18th July 1891, son of the Reverend Charles Patrick Blair, Minister at Wanlockhead for 37 years, and his wife Jean (Jeanie) Bogle Smith.
HOATSON David
Private 40960 9th (Service) Battalion Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). Killed on 12th April 1917 during the Battle of Arras, buried in Grave G29, Athies Communal Cemetery Extension. Born in 1898, the son of John and Williamson Minnie Scott Hoatson, later at Moffat Lea, Wanlockhead. In 1914 he was living at Motherwell and enlisted at Hamilton, Lanarkshire into the Lanarkshire Yeomanry, Service Number 1552.
HOWLAND Alexander
Private 30927 2nd Battalion Kings Own Scottish Borderers. Died 28 August 1918, buried in Wanlockhead Old Cemetery, Meadowfoot in a Commonwealth War Graves Commission grave. He is also commemorated on the Family Memorial, cemetery number 190, with the inscription ‘He laid down his life for us’. Born about 1895 in Wanlockhead (Soldiers Died in The Great War states he was born in Sanquhar), the son of Charles Howland and Ann Kirk.
KERR John
Private 273057 12th (Service) Bn Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment). Died 25th April 1918 and his remains were not found for burial He is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial. Born about 1892 in Wanlockhead (Soldiers Died in the Great War states born in Sanquhar but living in Wanlockhead), the son of James Kerr and Sarah Muir Mitchell Kerr. Soldiers Died in the Great War states he was born in Sanquhar and originally enlisted into the Lanarkshire Yeomanry in Lanark, Service Number 1352, and was later transferred into The Royal Scots. By 1918, his father had died and his mother was living in Post Office Row, Wanlockhead.
KERR John
Serjeant 17681 6th (Service) Battalion Kings Own Scottish Borderers. Died near Ypres on 25 April 1918. His remains were not found and he is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial. Born 11th March 1890 in Wanlockhead, the son of Andrew Kerr and Jane Watson. He died near Ypres on 25 April 1918. At the time of his death his father had also died and his mother was living in ‘Kirk St’ (Church Street), Wanlockhead. In ‘Soldiers killed in the Great War’, it states he was born in Sanquhar, enlisted in Dumfries and gives his rank at the time of his death as Private.
McCALL Thomas
Driver T/454274 107th Company, Royal Army Service Corps. Born about 1900 in Wanlockhead, son of William and Elizabeth Lorimer McCall, brother of William Lorimer McCall (below) . Parents living in the Old Schoolhouse, Wanlockhead. He died in the Bermondsey Military Hospital, Lewisham, London on 5 November 1919. As he is buried in the family grave in the Wanlockhead Old Cemetery at Meadowfoot and not in a CWGC grave it is unlikely he died on active service. It is probable this was either as the result if an accident as he was a driver, or by disease such as’ Spanish Flu’; the very virulent strain of influenza which killed so many people just after the First World War.
McCALL William Lorimer
Private S/4883 10th (Service) Bn Gordon Highlanders. Born about 1893 in Wanlockhead, brother of Thomas McCall (above). He enlisted at Motherwell, Service Number is the one immediately before that of Andrew McKean who also died on the first day of the Battle of Loos in the same Regiment on the same day, 25th September 1915. Remains were not found following the battle, commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Panel 115-119, Dud Corner Cemetery. Also commemorated on the family memorial in Wanlockhead Old Cemetery, Meadowfoot, Wanlockhead.
McKEAN Andrew
Private S/4884 10th (Service) Bn Gordon Highlanders. Born in Sanquhar on 23Rd December 1889, the son of Joseph and Susan Walker McKean. died on 25th September 1915 at Loos on the first day of the battle. His remains were not found following the battle and he is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Panel 115-119, Dud Corner Cemetery. He enlisted at Motherwell and his Service number is the one following that of William Lorimer McCall who died on the same day. Also commemorated on the family memorial in Wanlockhead Old Cemetery, Meadowfoot, Wanlockhead.
MITCHELL Charles
Private 249366th (Service) Bn Kings Own Scottish Borderers. Born in Wanlockhead about 1897, the son of John Mitchell J.P. and Ann (Annie) Watson Cockburn Mitchell. His parents were living at The Beeches, Wanlockhead at the time of his death. Killed near Ypres, Belgium on 12th April 1918 and has no known grave; commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Tyne Cot Cemetery, Zonnebeke, Belgium In ‘Soldiers died in the Great War’, it records he enlisted in Edinburgh.
MITCHELL John
Private 981 1/5th Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. John was born about 1895 and initially understood to have been born in Wanlockhead, but both Scott Elliot in the battalion history and ‘Soldiers Died in the Great War’ state he was born in London; the son of James and Janet Harkness Mitchell. Died of Wounds on 12th July 1915 and has no known grave. He is commemorated on the Helles Memorial on Cape Helles, Gallipoli. Killed in attack on Achi Baba, 1 of 76 men who died.
PATERSON Joseph
Private 15810 2nd Battalion Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He died near Arras on 26th August 1918 and his family details have not been traced. In ‘Soldiers killed in the Great War’, he is recorded as being born in Durisdeer and enlisting in Dumfries. Although recorded on the Wanlockhead War Memorial with the rank of Corporal, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and Soldiers Died in the Great War record him as a private. His remains were not traced and he is commemorated on the Vis en Artois Memorial, Vis en Artois Cemetery, Pas De Calais, France. Killed during an attack towards the village of Beugnatre.
SHARP Adam
Private 4249 1/5th Battalion Kings Own Scottish Borderers. Born in Wanlockhead in 1891, son of George and Jane Moffat Sharp of New Row, Wanlockhead, He enlisted in Dumfries in April 1915 and died in Egypt of Diphtheria and Dysentery on 8th December 1915 aged 23. His obituary appeared in the Dumfries and Galloway Standard on 22nd December 1915. Buried in Grave A60, Alexandria (Chatby) Military and War Cemetery, Egypt. Alexandria. The battalion fought in Gallipoli and suffered severely. Strength on embarkation 50 officers, 1082 Other Ranks. Strength on evacuation 20 officers, 322 other ranks. That says it all.
SLIMMON Robert
Private 118458 231st Company, Machine Gun Corps. Born about 1895 in Wanlockhead, the Son of Robert and Agnes Slimmon and died 26th December 1917 in Palestine. Soldiers Died in the Great War states he was born in Sanquhar, but was living in Wanlockhead. It also states he died on 25th December 1917, differing from the Commonwealth War Graves commission by one day. Enlisted in Dumfries, but into the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry, Service Number 36407. Although some units raised in the countryside were short of men and there were many transfers, this must have been one of the most unusual. No further details of which battalion he served in have so far been traced. However 1/4th Bn D.C.L.I. were in the same brigade in Palestine, so it appears he transferred there. Robert Slimmon died from dysentery, not wounds; probably caused by the millions of flies which found their way into the food and is buried in Grave H29, Ramleh War Cemetery, Ramla, Israel.
THOMSON John
Corporal 17886 12th (Service) Bn Highland Light Infantry. Identification of this casualty has been difficult He is named as a Corporal in the Highland Light Infantry on the War Memorial. However in the book issued about the Wanlockhead servicemen after the war he is shown as a Corporal in the Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). The date of death is given as 25 September 1915. Information from the Scottish National War Memorial indicates he was born in Frizington, Cumberland about 1881 and in 1901 was living in Arlecdon as a Stoker to a Stationery Steam Engine. Miners from here came to Wanlockhead in the early 1900’s and this is the only connection with the village so far found. On that basis he is identified as the casualty. His remains were not traced and he is commemorated on the Loos Memorial in Dud Corner Cemetery.
WATSON John A
Private S489010th (Service) Bn Gordon Highlanders. Born in Wanlockhead on 14th June 1886 the son of John Adamson Watson and Catherine Dewar. Following wounds received at Loos on 26th September 1915, he was initially transferred to the 11th Battalion Gordon Highlanders at Bridge of Allan. In September 1916, this became the 42nd Battalion in 9th Reserve Brigade in the Training Reserve and John was given a new Service Number of TR 16386. However he was discharged from the army on 1st August 1917 and later died in Wanlockhead on 16th December 1918. He is buried in the family grave in Wanlockhead Old Cemetery, Meadowfoot.
WILLIAMSON Thomas
Private 16076 10th (Service) Bn Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). Born on the 23rd August 1891 in Wanlockhead, son of Robert Williamson and Mary Ann Weir. At the time of his death his father was living at Donald’s Knowe, Wanlockhead, his mother having died in 1900. enlisted in Dumfries and died on 25th September 1915, the first day of the Battle of Loos. His obituary appeared in the Dumfries and Galloway Standard on 11th December 1915. His remains were not found following the battle and he is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Dud Corner Cemetery. He is also commemorated on the family memorial in Wanlockhead Old Cemetery, Meadowfoot, Wanlockhead
WORLD WAR
1939 -1945
McCALL Thomas
Sergeant (Flight Engineer) 1574131, 578 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Died 24th February 1944. Aged 20. Son of John and Mary McCall, of Wanlockhead. Buried in Abbeville Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France. Plot 6. Row F. Grave 7.
WILSON William Carmichael
Corporal 3191578, 6th Battalion, King's Own Scottish Borderers. Died 19th September 1944. Aged 25. Son of William Carmichael Wilson and Thomasina Love Wilson; husband of Eileen Elsie Wilson, of Penrith, Cumberland. Buried in Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Gelderland, Netherlands. Plot 9. Row D. Grave 8.

"BE THOU FAITHFUL UNTO DEATH,
AND I WILL GIVE THEE A CROWN OF LIFE"
REV.2.10

12 June 2005

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