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Thomas Thompson (1894-1918)

White-le-Head labourer served in the Machine Gun Corps

Thomas Thompson was born in White-le-Head in 1894. His father was coal miner Luke Thompson who was born in Cornsay in 1860. His mother was Margaret Ann Thompson nee Bolam who was born in Blackwell, Cumberland in 1866. Thomas’ parents married in 1885 and had four children, two girls and two boys. Thomas was the couple’s youngest child. In 1901 the Thompson family lived at 6 Mary Street, Stanley. In 1911, when Thomas was working as a colliery labourer, his family were living at 3 Smailes Street, Stanley.

Thomas initially attested in the 8th Battalion Durham Light Infantry (DLI) on 16 August 1915 to serve as a private with the service number 4211. Just under a year later he was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps (MGC) and renumbered as Private 44457. Thomas began his service as part of the British Expeditionary Force in France on 19 August 1916. On 4 January 1917, whilst serving as part of the 95th Company MGC he was wounded in action and admitted to the 58th Casualty Clearing Station with a wound to his right shoulder.

It is not clear whether Thomas rejoined his unit following this injury before being admitted, at the beginning of May 1917, to a general hospital in Boulogne suffering with a hernia. Following treatment Thomas rejoined his unit in the field on 21 June 1917. For the next few months, Thomas’ medical records become very hard to read. However there is a suggestion that he received another gunshot wound which required medical treatment in November 1917. Following a fortnight’s leave in England, Thomas again rejoined his company on 28 January 1918.

Only a few months later on 13 April 1918 Thomas was again wounded and admitted to the 17th Casualty Clearing Station with a gunshot wound to his back. A few days later he was admitted to a hospital in Boulogne before being invalided to England. From here he was admitted to the 4th Northern General Hospital in Lincoln on 17 April. There is detailed information about Thomas’ injury at the time of his admission which is recorded as a gunshot wound to his right thigh. These show Thomas’ injuries were severe and he was very unwell at the time of his admission. He died from septicaemia in the 4th Northern General Hospital in Lincoln on 1 May 1918.

Thomas’ body was returned home and he was buried in Stanley New Cemetery. He is remembered in a book of remembrance at St. Andrew’s church in Stanley. Thomas Thompson was awarded the Victory Medal and the British War Medal for his service in World War One.

Civil Parish: Stanley

Birth date: 1894

Death date: 01-May-1918

Armed force/civilian: Army

Residence: 6 Mary Street, Stanley (1901 census)
3 Smailes Street, Stanley (1911 census)

Religion: Church of England

Employment: Colliery Labourer (1911 Census)

Family: Parents: Luke Thompson (b 1860), Margaret Ann Thompson nee Bolam (b 1866)
Siblings: Frances E Thompson (b 1888), Catherine Ann Thompson (b 1866), Luke Thompson (b 1891)

Military service:

Durham Light Infantry
Machine Gun Corps

Medal(s): British War Medal
Victory Medal

Memorial(s): New Cemetery, Stanley
Book of Remembrance 1914-18, St. Andrew’s Church, Stanley

Gender: Male

Contributed by David D, Stanley, Co Durham

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