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Private James Walter WYKES (known as Walter)

Military Police, Northamptonshire Regiment 10587
Royal Berkshire Regiment 37462
Labour Corps, Agricultural Unit 497346

J Walter Wykes 1888 1959
J Walter Wykes 1888 1959

Walter was born in Spratton on 14 May 1888, the son of farm labourer John Wykes and his wife Harriet. The family lived in a cottage in Manor Road and three of the sons, John Francis, William and Walter, all served in the First World War. Walter was a farm labourer working at Broomhill Farm for Sir Mervyn Manningham-Buller.

When he was 20 he joined the Northamptonshire Regiment Special Reserve (June 1908) and as soon as war was declared he joined the Northamptonshire Regiment. He served in the Military Police with the rank of Corporal at the beginning of the war, but this was not a success and when he was sent overseas in October 1916 he was transferred to the Royal Berkshire Regiment as a Private.

He suffered a gunshot wound to his hand in February 1917 and was treated in France at Rouen Hospital. Having been sent home for hospital treatment in Birmingham where one of his fingers was amputated, it was decided he was no longer fit for front-line duty and in December 1917 he was transferred to the Agricultural Unit of the Labour Corps. He worked on farms in this country until he was demobbed in May 1919. (Walter’s discharge documents were addressed to him at ‘Near the Hall, Spratton’. Later papers were sent to him at ‘Near the Hole, Spratton’.) He received financial compensation for his injuries and was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

After the war, Walter and his wife Winifred lived in Brixworth Road, Spratton, and he served in the Home Guard in the Second World War.  He died on 2 March 1959 aged 71 and is buried in the new parish cemetery in Spratton, as is his wife. 

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Where he lived in Spratton

Genealogy Data

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LEATHERLAND
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LEONARD
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LIVESEY
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MANNING
MANNINGHAM-BULLER
MARTIN
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MIDDLETON (WYKES)
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TARRANT
TAYLOR
THORNTON
TIRRELL
TITE
TREDWELL
TURLAND
VINEY
VOKE
WADHAMS
WARD
WARWICKS
WHATTON
WOOD
WYKES
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