Private William Townsley

Private William Townsley 16th ( Service ) Battalion ( 2nd Glasgow ) Highland Light Infantry. He died in France on 18th April 1917 from wounds received during the Battle of Arras, aged 32. He had been born in Tweedmouth and was the husband of Christina Townsley and the father of two children of 36 Duke Street, Coldstream and is buried in the Nesle Communal Cemetery, France. The 16th Battalion was a “Pals” Battalion and had been mostly formed from current and former members of the Boys Brigade in Glasgow. Before the war he had been employed by William Smith, Builders of Coldstream as a labourer. He had been a National Reservist in the Kings Own Scottish Borderers but had been transferred to the H.L.I. His brother Moses had already been killed in Gallipoli in 1915 serving with the 1st/4th K.O.S.B and another brother Ambrose would be killed later in the year in October during the Battle of Third Ypres. The photographs show British troops with a tank in the main street of a captured village near Arras. ( The Battle is sometimes referred to as the “Scottish Battle” due to the 38 Scots Battalions who took part in the fighting ).

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