Sergeant Leonard Benjamin Woulidge, 45870
- Batt -
- Unit - Machine Gun Corps
- Section -
- Date of Birth - 22/7/1896
- Died - 13/10/1918
- Age - 22
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Source: Michael Doyle Their Name Liveth For Evermore: The Great War Roll of Honour for Leicestershire and Rutland. He was the youngest son of Benjamin Mason Woulidge, Farmer and his wife Louisa M., who was the daughter of William Gilbert of Osgathorpe, Leicestershire. Leonard was educated at Belton County Council School (Scholar), Loughborough Grammar School and Saltley Training College, where he was a student. He volunteered for active service, and enlisted in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the 23rd November 1915, being subsequently transferred to the Machine Gun Corps. He served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from August 1916, and proceeded to Italy in November 1917, returning to France in March 1918 and was killed in action near the Menin Road on the 13th October 1918. His Commanding Officer wrote, “I cannot speak too highly of the character of Sergeant Woulidge, and his loss will be much felt, both in the field, and in the social life of the company. He had been recommended for gallantry as recently as the 2nd October last.” He was awarded the Military Medal and Bar (London Gazettes, 31st July 1917 and 2nd October 1918) for gallantry and devotion to duty in the field. Leonard was unmarried.
Source: Leicestershire War Memorials Project. Coalville Times article - Friday September 28th, 1917
Corporal L. B. Woulidge, M.G.C. second son of Mr and Mrs B. M. Woulidge, of the Lowood Farm, Belton, has been awarded the Military Medal. This is the first military honour awarded to a Belton man, Corporal Woulidge was formerly a teacher at the Shepshed Council Schools.
Coalville Times article - Friday November 1st, 1918
Mr and Mrs B. M. Woulidge, of the Lowlands Farm, Belton, are notified of the death of their youngest son, Sergeant Leonard B. Woulidge, in France. In conveying the sad news to the mother, the Major commanding the battalion, Machine Gun Corps, stated that deceased was killed in action on Sunday, October 13th, death being instantaneous. His officer also said that he could not speak too highly of the character of Sergeant Woulidge, and further stated that his loss would be felt both in the field and social life of the company. Morevover, he had been recommended for gallantry as recently as October 2nd. As a lad deceased was attended the Belton School where he gained a ‘Harley’ scholarship, as well as one of the scholarships offered by the Leicestershire County Council. Accepting the former, he attended the Loughborough Grammar School for four years. After serving a year as student teacher at the Shepshed Council School, he entered on a course of training at Saltley College, and it was while a student in his second year that he enlisted in the Royal Warwicks, later being transferred to the Machine Gun Corps. He left for France in August, 1916, was in Italy four months, and then returned to France. Soon after this he was awarded the Military Medal and special congratulations of his officers for gallantry and determination on July 31st, 1917, when in charge of a gun team he took up a position in front of the infantry, keeping his gun in action, thereby greatly assisting in breaking up an enemy counter-attack. Sergeant Woulidge was a man of fine physique, and a great favourite with all who knew him. He was home on leave in June, when he was in excellent health and fine spirits.
Research undertaken and submitted by Andy Murby 20/12/2017
- Conflict - World War I
- Burial Place - Xx J 10, Hooge Crater Cemetery
- Birth Place - Diseworth
- Unit - Machine Gun Corps
- Former Unit n.o - 4436
- Former Unit - Royal Warwickshire Regiment
- Cause of death - KILLED IN ACTION
- Burial Commemoration - Hooge Crater Cem., Zillebeke, Belgium
- Born - Diseworth, Leics
- Enlisted - 23/11/15 In Aston, Birmingham, Warwks
- Place of Residence - Low Woods Farm, Belton, Leicestershire, England
- Memorial - ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST CHYRD. MEM., BELTON, LEICS
- Memorial - LOUGHBOROUGH GRAMMAR SCHOOL MEM., LEICS