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William Carr (1896-1916)

Silksworth man served as an able seaman in the Royal Naval Brigade

William Carr was born in Silksworth, Sunderland on 10 January 1896. His father was colliery stoneman George William Carr (1874-1952) from Silksworth. His mother was Barbara Carr nee Foster (1877-1961) from Ryhope. His parents married in 1895 and had four children. William was their eldest child and had two brothers and one sister. In 1901 the Carr family lived at 22 Wellington Street, Southwick, Sunderland. By 1911 they had moved to 38 Kimberley Terrace, Craghead. William had attended Craghead Council School and at the time of the census was working as a pony driver in the local coal mine.

William enlisted in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (RNVR) on 20 January 1915. He was initially rated as an ordinary seaman with the service number TZ/3528. As an able seaman he was drafted to the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF) on 9 September 1915 for operations in the Dardanelles. He joined Drake Battalion, Royal Naval Division (RND) on 21 September 1915. He served with them until 16 October 1915, when he was treated for dysentery, and then rejoined his unit on 9 January 1916.

Mobilised to the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), William was serving on the Western Front when he was taken to sick convoy on 12 September 1916 with an injury to his lower jaw. He returned back to duty on 20 September 1916. He died of shrapnel wounds to the chest on 14 December 1916 at No 1 Casualty Clearing Station. He is buried at Varennes Military Cemetery, Somme, France.

William Carr was awarded the 1914-15 Star, the Victory Medal and the British War Medal for his service in World War One. He is remembered on several local memorials in Craghead.

Civil Parish: Craghead

Birth date: 10-Jan-1896

Death date: 14-Dec-1916

Armed force/civilian: Navy

Residence: Silksworth (Birthplace)
22 Wellington Street, Southwick, Sunderland (1901 census)
38 Kimberley Terrace, Craghead (1911 census)
9 Thomas Street, Craghead (Royal Naval Division Casualties record)

Education: Craghead Council School

Employment: Pony Driver – Coal Mine (1911 census)

Family: Parents: George William Carr (1874-1952), Barbara Carr nee Foster (1877-1961)
Siblings: John Carr (b 1899), Annie Foster Carr (b 1903), George Carr (b 1907)

Military service:

Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve
Service Number TZ/3528
Able seaman
Royal Naval Division, Drake Battalion

Medal(s): 1914-15 Star
Victory Medal
British War Medal

Memorial(s): Varennes British Cemetery, Somme, France
Plaque 1914-18, Council School, Craghead
Roll of Honour 1914-18, St Thomas’s Church, Craghead
Statue 1914-18, Roadside, Craghead

Gender: Male

Contributed by David D, Stanley, Co Durham

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