William Brierley

Born: Not known
Died: 11 November 1914
Service number: 3359
Rank: Private
Regiment/Service: 5th Battallion​, King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Family information: Spouse: May Clara Brierley, 24 Second Avenue, Upton

War service

William must have joined up early in the war and was a private in the 5th Battalion of the KOYLI. His service number was 3359.

His service was shortlived and coincidentally he died exactly 4 years before the armistice on 11 November 1914. At the time of his death the 5th Battalion were in reserve and based somewhere on the East Coast, possibly near Whitby. They didn’t go to France until 1917.

William is buried at Moorthorpe Cemetery in a Commonwealth War Grave. The cause of his death is not known.

Family story

William was my grandfather on my mother’s side of the family. He was married to May Clara and both were born in West Bromwich in the West Midlands. They were possibly canal boat people. They had four children: my mother, Alice May Searle, William, Victor and Ralph.

Around 1914 they moved north to South Elmsall and lived at Cambridge St, Moorthorpe where William presumably worked in the mine.

William died in November 1914 and May Clara was left with four children. She must have had plenty to do to keep the family clothed and fed. At the time of his death she lived at 24 Second Avenue, Upton. She is remembered as a very smart and capable lady. Sadly, her son Ralph died young in the 1920s. She is buried with her husband at Moorthorpe.

Contact us

We Will Remember Them Project

Wakefield Library,
PO Box 700,
Burton Street,

01924 302 210