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William Lay (1890-1918)

Page Bank man served as a corporal in the Northumberland Fusiliers

William Lay was born in Page Bank in 1890. His father was police constable Thomas Lay (1856-1909) who was born in Tillingham, Essex. His mother was Annie Lay (1855-1901) who was a police sergeant’s daughter from Hartlepool. William’s parents married in 1878 in Darlington. They had six known children giving William three sisters and two brothers. In 1891 the Lay family lived at 78 Pleasant Row, Edmondsley. By 1901 they had moved to 1 Stone Row, Edmondsley.

Shortly after the 1901 census William’s mother died, followed by his father’s death in January 1909. At the time of the 1911 census, William was living with his sister and her husband, who worked as a miner, in Simpson’s Houses, Holmside. This would have been a busy household with 11 people living within three rooms. William’s brothers George and Thomas were also boarders in this household. William was working as a grocer’s assistant whilst his older brother George was an assistant school master.

William married Frances Lay nee McKie (1887-1951) in the Lanchester registration district in 1913. She was an engineman’s daughter from Kyo. There is no mention of any children born to the couple in any surviving records.

William attested in the Northumberland Fusiliers. He initially served as a private with the service number 88610, later being promoted to the rank of Corporal. He died from pneumonia at Rugeley Camp, Cannock Chase, Staffordshire on 27 November 1918. His wife was living at 74 Poplar Street, South Moor at the time of his death. His body was returned home and buried in Stanley New Cemetery in grave 7 C 208.

William Lay was awarded the Victory Medal and the British War Medal for his service in World War One.

Civil Parish: Stanley

Birth date: 1890

Death date: 27-Nov-1918

Armed force/civilian: Army

Residence: 78 Pleasant Row, Edmondsley (1891 census)
1 Stone Row, Edmondsley (1901 census)
Simpson’s Houses, Holmside (1911 census)
74 Poplar Street, South Moor (Wife’s address at time of William’s death)

Employment: Grocer’s assistant (1911 Census)

Family: Parents: Thomas Lay (1856-1909), Annie Lay (1855-1901)
Siblings: Ellen “Nellie” Lay (b 1878), Alice Lay (b 1881), George Henry Lay (b 1884), Minnie Lay (b 1886), Thomas Lay (b 1895)
Spouse: Frances Lay nee McKie

Military service:

Northumberland Fusiliers

Medal(s): British War Medal
Victory Medal

Memorial(s): New Cemetery, Stanley (grave 7 C 208)

Gender: Male

Contributed by David D, Stanley, Co Durham

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