Joseph Herbert WILKINSON
Rank: Gunner
Number: 16951
Unit: D Battery, 155th Brigade ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
Date of Death: 6 October 1918
Age: 34 (believed to be)
Cemetery: Chapel Corner Cemetery, Sauchy-Lestree, Pas de Calais, France

Almost nothing is known of Joseph, except that Army records published after the War suggest he was born in Winsford and enlisted into the army at Stockport. The family history website, CheshireBMD records the registration of the birth at Winsford of a Joseph H Wilkinson in 1884 and this may well be him.

He has a very low service number for an artilleryman and it may indicate that he was a pre-War soldier in the regular army. If so, then 155th Brigade may not have been his original unit as it was only formed in the spring of 1915. It is possible though that he had not gone overseas when War was declared in the previous August but had been retained to provide some experience to the new unit. In January 1917, 155th Brigade was detached from its command under 32nd Division and was redesignated as an “Army Brigade”. These were reinforcing units which could be allocated to any sector of the battlefield to provide additional artillery firepower. There are no remaining day-to-day records of these brigades and it is not possible to know under what circumstances Joseph was killed in action.

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