King Edward’s School and the Great War

Memorial Roll of Honour 1914 - 1918


Richards, William Charles

Private ▪ 6th South Staffordshire Regiment, Territorial Force

William Charles Richards, born on 5th January 1898, was admitted to King Edward’s School in January 1911, after attending Willow House School in Walsall for 7 years. His Record Card states that his father, Silas, a bolt and nut manufacturer, had died by the time he began at KES, and he lived with his mother, Jane, and six of his eight siblings at 137, Darlaston Road, Walsall.

The absence of any mention of William in the Chronicle suggests that he was not actively involved in sports at School. However the School Lists show some strong academic performances in his first two years, notably in science, although this tailed off in the year he left.

William joined the army in 1914 as a Private Soldier with the 6th South Staffordshire Regiment, Territorial Force, and landed at Le Havre on 3rd March 1915. He was killed on 13th October 1915 at the Battle of Loos, aged seventeen. Few of the men killed on that date have known graves. For the most part their bodies were found after the war, and re-interred in cemeteries close to the battlefield. William’s body was removed from Barts Alley Cemetery and reburied at Loos British Cemetery. He is commemorated on the Richards’ family memorial in Woodgreen Cemetery, Wednesbury, and he left his estate of £1,678 to his mother.