William Cumberlidge 1894-1970

William Cumberlidge 1894-1970

Guardsman 18157 K Company Scots Guards

William Richard Cumberlidge was born 15 December 1894 in Rugeley in Staffordshire, England. He was the eldest son of Richard Cumberlidge and his wife Gertrude nee Richards.

At the age of 9 years old William was lifting a pot of water from the fire when his clothes caught fire. He suffered burns to his right thigh and stomach. At the age of 11 he was working as a potter and William strained himself whilst lifting heavy weights. He inevitably followed his father into the coal mines working for the Cannock & Rugeley Colliery Co. at Hednesford, Staffordshire, England.

He enlisted into the army on 23rd February 1916 and was transferred to the Army reserve. He was mobilised on 25 May 1918 and became Private/Guardsman 18157 in the K Company of the Scots Guards. However, his injuries suffered in childhood made walking distances impossible and marching was painful. He was discharged as surplus to requirements on 20 January 1919.

William married Edith Ellen Deakin in 1920 and they had two children:

  • Arnold W Cumberlidge, born 7 August 1921, and,
  • Gordon Cumberlidge, born 23 Dec 1927

William returned to working as a potter casting sanitary ware. He died in 1970 and his wife died in 1953.

WW1 Army Service Record

Army Form W3997

Regtl No:            18157

Rank:                  Guardsman

Name:                William Cumberlidge

Regt:                   Scots Guards

DISCHARGED:- Surplus to Military requirements. (Not having suffered impairment since entry into the service.) Para. 392 (xxva) K: R: 20 Jan 1919

20 Jan 1919




(For the Duration of the War, with the Colours and in the Army Reserve)

ATTESTATION OF No: 18157         Name: Cumberlidge William Corps: Scots Guards

Name:   William Cumberlidge

Address: 13 Bees Lane, Rugeley

British Subject: Yes

Age: 21 Years 2 Months

Trade: Colliery Lampman

Married: Single

Served before: No

23 February 1916 at Rugeley



Name: William Cumberlidge

Age: 21 years 2 months

Height: 5 ft 7¼ inches

Chest measurement, Girth when fully expanded: 36½ inches, range of expansion: 3 inches



Name and address of next-of-kin: Gertrude Cumberlidge 13 Bees Lane, Rugeley Relationship: Mother


STATEMENT of the SERVICES of No. 18157 Name: William Cumberlidge


General Service, Attested, Private, 23 Feb 1916

General Service, To Army Reserve, Private, 23 Feb 1916

Mobilized, Private, 25 May 1918

Scots Guards, Posted, Private, 27 May 1918

Scots Guards, 5th Reserve, Posted, Private, 25 May 1918

Transferred to Class W Army Reserve, Private, 7 Nov 1918

DISCHARGED:- Surplus to Military requirements. (Not having suffered impairment since entry into the service.) Para. 392 (xxva) K: R: 20 Jan 1919


HOME from 25 May 1918 to 20 Jan 1919 221 days

Total service towards Engagement to 20 Jan 1919 (date of discharge) 221 days

Total service towards Pension to 20 Jan 1919 (date of discharge) 221 days


Medical Report on a Soldier Boarded Prior to Discharge or Transfer to Class W., W.(T), P. or P.(T), of the Reserve

Unit and Corps: K Company Scots Guards

Regtl No: 18157

Rank: Private

Name: Cumberlidge William

Age last birthday: 23

Posted for duty: 25 May 1918 at Caterham in category (grade): 1

Former trade or occupation: miner

Previous service: nil

Statement of Case

If brought forward for invaliding, disability in respect of which invaliding is proposed to be stated here

Left ___ hernia + dry skin _____ [the writing is unreadable]

Date of origin on disability: 10 years ago

Place of origin of disability: Rugeley

Essential facts

Also cophis? Of fair? In scars

4 months in army Non drills Cat B II 3 Sep 1918


Diagnosis: Congenital hydrocele as at time of Enlistment he states that the condition is the same as at the time of enlistment

No attributable or aggravated by service

Cause: congenital defect


That the Medical Officer directed two days after being posted that he should do no training

Putney, 31 Oct 1918



Regimental No. 18157

Rank: Private

Name: Cumberlidge William

Unit and Corps: K Company, Scots Guards, Guards Depot, Caterham, Surrey


In what countries have you served during this war: no, at Home 4 months

In what capacity: Infantry Soldier

If you are suffering from any disease, wound, or injury, state what it is:

Left Hernia & Burns right leg. Whilst I was employed as a Potter about 10 years ago I strained myself through lifting heavy weights. Its hurts me if I walk about 2 miles, & I have to sit down & rest. I got the scar when I was about 9 years old. I was lifting a kettle of water off the fire when my clothes caught fire. This now affects me when I do much marching as the dry skins cracks.

Did you suffer from the disease or injury before joining the army: yes

Doctors who treated you: Dr Freer, The Green, Rugeley

National Health Approved Society: Prudential Insurance Society

Name and address of last employer: Cannock & Rugeley Colliery Co. Hednesford, Staffs

Occupation before Army: Coal Miner

Trade: Lampman

27 Sep 1918

Signed (Soldier) W Cumberlidge Private


Descriptive Return of a Soldier medically boarded before Discharge or Transfer to the Reserve

Soldier’s Name: Cumberlidge William

Unit from which discharged: ‘K’ Company Scots Guards, Guards Depot

Regimental No: 18157

Rank: Private

Age at discharge: 23 yrs 10 months

Married: Single

Occupation before enlistment: Coal Miner

Name of approved society: Prudential Insurance Co Ltd

Where born: Rugeley, Staffs and date: 15 Dec 1894

Colour of hair on discharge: Light Brown

Colour of eyes: Blue

Complexion: Fair

Christian name of father: Richard

Christian name of mother: Gertrude

Figure on discharge: Good

Descriptive and other distinguishing marks: Large Burn Scar to Leg

Signature: William Cumberlidge

Rank: Private

Station: Caterham

19 Oct 1918



Unmarried without children with the following dependents for whom an allowance is being paid:

Mrs G Cumberlidge (Mother)

Address: 13 Bees Lane, Rugeley

29 Oct 1918




Scots Regiment of Scots Guards

Regimental Number and Name: 18157 Cumberlidge, William

Attested: 23 February 1916

Joined 25 May 1918

Certified that there is no Record of the above named Soldier having received any Regiments Entry during his Service.

24 Oct 1918, Guards Depot, Caterham Barracks, Caterham, Surrey


Casualty Form – Active Service

Regimental Number: 18157

Regiment or Corps: Scots Guards

Rank: Private

Surname: Cumberlidge

Christian Name: William

Religion: Wesleyan

Age on Enlistment: 21 years 2 months

Enlisted: 23 Feb 1916

Terms of Service: Duration of War

Service reckons from: 25 May 1918

3 Sep 1918 from TMB Caterham, Occupational, Cat B.2.

Mobilized 25 May 1918

Scots Guards posted 27 May 1918

Next of kin: Mother Gert: Cumberlidge, 3 Bees Lane, Rugeley.


MEDICAL HISTORY of Surname: CUMBERLEDGE Christian Name: William

Birthplace, parish: Rugeley, County: Staffordshire

Examined: 18 day of April 1918

Declared age: 23 years 4 months

Trade or Occupation: pre war miner

Height: 5 feet 7¼ inches

Weight 117 lbs

Colour of Hair: Brown

Complexion: Fresh

Eyes: Blue

Chest measurement, girth when fully expanded: 36½ inches, range of expansion 3 inches

Vaccination marks: 4 Left Arm

When vaccinated: Infancy

Vision Right Eye – 6/6 Left Eye – 6/6

Identification marks: Large burn scare right thigh and abdomen

Fit for Grace I. (one)

Joined on enlistment: Scots Guards Regtl. No. 18157

Service Table – Station: Caterham arrived 26 May 1918