William Robert Robertson

Military Information

  • Date of enlistment: May 1915
  • Place of enlistment: HMS Unicorn, Dundee
  • Service no: Clyde Z/4817
  • Rank: Able Seaman
  • Service Occupation:
  • Awards:
  • Regiment/Service: Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve
  • Unit/Ship: Howe Battalion, R.N. Div
  • Place of Death: 1/1st Midland Casualty Clearing Station, France
  • Age at Death: 18
  • Date of Death: 19.02.1917
  • Burial Country: France
  • Cemetery: Dernancourt Communal Cemetery Extension
  • Grave/Mem Ref no: V.C.23.

Personal Information

  • Date of Birth: 12.05.1897
  • Place of Birth:
  • Address: 5 Prospect Pl, Grays Lane, Lochee, Dundee
  • Occupation: Grocer
  • Mother:
  • Father:

    William Innes Robertson, 5 Prospect Pl, Grays Lane, Lochee

  • Siblings:
  • Spouse:
  • Children:

More about William Robert Robertson

William Robertson was the son of Mr William I Robertson, Grocer, of 5 Prospect Road, Grays Lane, Lochee, Dundee and was employed as a Grocer when, in May 1915, he volunteered to join the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve onboard HMS Unicorn for service in the Royal Naval Division. After initial Naval Training at the Crystal Palace in South London he was sent to Blandford Camp in Dorset for advanced military training in July. On completion, he was granted seven days leave before he was drafted to the Howe Battalion serving in Gallipoli and arrived on the Peninsula in September. He survived the rest of the campaign but was evacuated to hospital in Malta in January 1916 with a septic wound to his right thumb. He remained in Malta until March when he sailed to Alexandria and then to Mudros to rejoin the Battalion by mid April. The Battalion sailed for France in May arriving at Marseille before heading north for the Western Front. The RND took part in the final battle of the Somme Campaign, capturing the village of Beaucourt in November. William Robertson was wounded during the initial assault on 13 November suffering from “W” Concussion. This was a term used at this time to describe shell shock caused by close proximity to exploding shells. he was evacuated later to a convalescent hospital in Northern France before rejoining the battalion at the end of November. In February 1917 the Howe Battalion were involved in a series of attacks in the vicinity of Puisieux and River Trenches which were captured. The Germans mounted counter attacks and it was in their shelling that William Robertson was wounded in the abdomen by a shell fragment. He died in a casualty clearing station on 19 February and was buried in the Dernancourt Communal Cemetery Extension, Northern France. He is commemorated on the Boys Brigade Memorial and there is a report in the Peoples Journal in early 1917.

William died 19.02.1917 at 1/1st South Midland Casualty Clearing Station from shrapnel wounds to the abdomen, received 17.02.1917.

William Robert Robertson   CZ/4817   Howe Bn  R.N.D.

Died of wounds 19th February 1917 in 1/1st South Midland Casualty Clearing Station (Shrapnel wound Abdomen 17th February 1917).  13th November 1916 wounded (Concussion, Shell-Shock).  A Grocer; born 12th May 1897; Next-of-Kin & home address: Father, William, 5 Prospect Rd., Gray’s Lane, Lochee.

R.N.D. Data Base

Additional information and image kindly supplied by Michael Caldwell.

Further information supplied by Iain Stewart and Iain Birnie

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