April 2011 Archives
Thomas Williams was finally discharged from the army on 25 March 1919 when he resumed his career as a tailor with his former employers, H R Davies, Abergele Road, Colwyn Bay. Amongst Tom's records at Kew there was a letter from H R Davies dated February 1919. It was impossible to read because of the damage but presumably it was confirmation that Tom would get his job back on discharge from the army.
The residents of Colwyn Bay who served in the Great War were presented with a leather wallet by the Urban District Council of Colwyn Bay and Colwyn. I have Tom's wallet and it looks as if it's been used on a very regular basis and it was clearly good leather. On the inside there is a subscription:
"The residents of Colwyn Bay, Colwyn and District, desire to record their high appreciation of the loyal services rendered to King and Country by you, during the Great War 1914-1919"
Also in the records I found that he was issued with his War Badge and Certificate No 488756 on 30 September 1920 but unfortunately the Certificate has not survived. The instructions state that the War Badge should be worn on the right breast or the right lapel of the jacket but not on military uniform.
In April 1922 he was issued with his War Medals, the British War Medal and the Allied Victory Medal. These were known as "Squeak" and "Wilfred" respectively and I have both of these. I show one side of the British War Medal with the bar and both sides of the Victory Medal with the inscription "The Great War for Civilisation 1914-1919" on one side. Approximately 5.7 million of the Victory Medal and 6.5 million of the War Medal ware awarded.
At the top I also show the badge of the Liverpool Scottish, the 1/10 Battalion of the King's Liverpool Regiment, which is in a remarkably good condition.
Thomas Williams died, still a bachelor, aged 59 on 18 September 1945 and was buried in the New Cemetery (now called Arwelfa Cemetery), Penmachno. His coffin was carried by six of the staff of H R Davies, Colwyn Bay. Following this my mother gave his kilt (shown in the photo in Blog No 46) to Tom's younger cousin Hugh who was a tailor and he used it to make a coat for his young son. When I told them this story at the Regimental Museum they said that he shouldn't have kept it. It should have been handed back before discharge!
Brian Hollins, if you are reading this I would be really grateful if you could get in touch.
Gwynedd Family History Society, www.gwynedd.fhs.org.uk
Meetings for the next four weeks are:
Caernarfon, 28 Ebrill (In Welsh, last Thursday of each month) 7.00pm at the Library, LÃŽn Pafiliwn: Noson Aelodau
Dolgellau, 12 Mai (In Welsh, second Thursday of each month) 7.00pm at the Royal Ship Hotel: Noson yng nghwmni Iwan Morgan
Clwyd Family History Society, www.clwydfhs.org.uk The meetings are held on the second Saturday of each month (except August) at 2.00 pm at locations that rotate within the former county of Clwyd. The next meeting is as follows:
14 May, 2.00pm. The War Memorial Institute, PEN-Y-FFORDD, Flintshire. CH4 0JZ
Hilary Ambrose: "NAUGHTY ANCESTORS"