King Edward’s School and the Great War

Memorial Roll of Honour 1914 - 1918


Hawkes, Wilfrid

Rifleman ▪ 5th Rifle Brigade

Wilfrid Hawkes, born on 9th August 1881, was admitted to King Edward’s School in January 1892, aged 10. His father, William, was a hardware merchant, and the family lived at 9, Sir Harry’s Road, Edgbaston. Wilfrid’s brother, Philip, also an Old Edwardian, served with the Royal Field Artillery during the war.

At School, Wilfrid proved himself a capable mathematician, and was a member of the Sporting Club, the cricket team and the Debating Society. He was also Chess Secretary and Captain. In 1898, he gave a paper to the Natural History Society on the subject of earthworms, “which provoked animated discussion”. At the time of the 1911 Census, Wilfrid was an assistant farmer, working in Caernarvon, Wales.

In October 1914, Wilfrid enlisted as a Rifleman in the 5th Rifle Brigade. During his time in France, he was wounded three times, and on 21st March 1918 was declared missing, presumed dead, at Flavy-le-Martel. He is commemorated on the Pozières War Memorial, and left his estate of £655 to his father.