William Thomas Gough Humphreys

Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry

Personal Details

Born: 11 May 1894 in Whitchurch, Shropshire.

Family: The fourth child of William John Henry and Martha Sarah Humphreys of Bridge Street, Oakengates, Shropshire. In 1920 William married Margaret Millichamp and together they had 2 children – Marguerite and Ian.

Civilian Occupation: At the age of 16 William was a server to an iron moulder and an iron worker when he enlisted. In 1939 he was working as a postman.

Residence: When discharged from the Army he was living at Ivy Cottage, Hanwood, Shropshire. In 1939 he lived at 2 Judith Butts Lane, Shrewsbury, Shropshire.

Died: In March 1963 aged 68.

Other Information: His surname is spelt ‘Humphries’ in military records.



Military Details

Regiment: Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry

Rank: Private

Service Number: 14097

Badge Number: 106558

Date of Enlistment: 8 September 1914

Date of Discharge: 15 September 1916

Reason for Discharge: No longer physically fit for service.

Other Information: In November 1915 he was admitted to hospital suffering with eczema and returned to England on the 25 November. He remained in England until discharged.

Medals and Awards

William was awarded the Campaign Medals (1914/15 Star, British War Medal, and Victory Medal).

Campaign Medals

Great War History Hub Whitchurch Shropshire Medals Front Image

The 1914 Star (also known as 'Pip') was authorised under Special Army Order no. 350 in November 1917 and by an Admiralty Fleet Order in 1918, for award to officers and men of the British and Indian Expeditionary Forces who served in France or Belgium between 5 August and midnight of 22–23 November 1914. The former date is the day after Britain's declaration of war against the Central Powers, and the closing date marks the end of the First Battle of Ypres.

The 1914–15 Star (also known as 'Pip') was instituted in December 1918 and was awarded to officers and men of British and Imperial forces who served against the Central European Powers in any theatre of the Great War between 5 August 1914 and 31 December 1915. The period of eligibility was prior to the introduction of the Military Service Act 1916, which instituted conscription in Britain.

The British War Medal (also known as 'Squeak') was a silver or bronze medal awarded to officers and men of the British and Imperial Forces who either entered a theatre of war or entered service overseas between 5th August 1914 and 11th November 1918 inclusive. This was later extended to services in Russia, Siberia and some other areas in 1919 and 1920. Approximately 6.5 million British War Medals were issued. Approximately 6.4 million of these were the silver versions of this medal. Around 110,000 of a bronze version were issued mainly to Chinese, Maltese and Indian Labour Corps. The front (obv or obverse) of the medal depicts the head of George V. The recipient's service number, rank, name and unit was impressed on the rim.

The Allied Victory Medal (also known as 'Wilfred') was issued by each of the allies. It was decided that each of the allies should each issue their own bronze victory medal with a similar design, similar equivalent wording and identical ribbon. The British medal was designed by W. McMillan. The front depicts a winged classical figure representing victory. Approximately 5.7 million victory medals were issued. Interestingly, eligibility for this medal was more restrictive and not everyone who received the British War Medal ('Squeak') also received the Victory Medal ('Wilfred'). However, in general, all recipients of 'Wilfred' also received 'Squeak' and all recipients of The 1914 Star or The 1914/1915 Star (also known as 'Pip') also received both 'Squeak' and 'Wilfred'. The recipient's service number, rank, name and unit was impressed on the rim.

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