William (Willie) Hodgson was born in Lancaster c.1898 and was one of two children to Martin Hodgson and Elizabeth (Barwise). He had a brother, Joseph, who died in infancy.
The 1901 census found the Hodgsons living at 43, Hulme Street, Coppenhall, Crewe, with Mr Hodgson employed as a brick turner. Born in Arlecdon, Cumbria, Mr Hodgson died on 21st January, 1911 in the Prescot district of Lancashire. He was buried in an unmarked communal grave at St Helens Cemetery, Lancashire.
Mrs Hodgson then took Willie to Flint to live with her widowed mother, Mary, at 1, Halkyn Street, and Willie took a job as an errand boy at a draper’s shop. Willie and his mother would eventually settle at 8, Hill Street, and he would change jobs to work as a silkworks labourer. He never married.
Willie’s service details are unknown but he was gassed in the trenches at some point and, as a consequence, was discharged on 9th January, 1919 after a period of service of three years and 26 days.
He died on 8th March, 1920 at his home, 8, Hill Street, of tuberculosis and buried in the Northop Road Cemetery (Grave 12, Line 40, South Side). His army service would have contributed to his early death, which is why he was commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
He is not remembered on any war memorial but he was awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal.
In 2014, after 94 years, the CWGC decided to place a military headstone over his grave – except it has been placed on Grave 14, Line 39, South Side by mistake.
Willie’s mother, Elizabeth, was born in Little Clifton, Cumberland, and died on 19th September, 1954, aged 90, in a Holywell hospital. She is buried with her son William. She had been confined to her bed for the previous 10 years, but she was only admitted to hospital on the day prior to her death. She had lived in Flint for nearly 50 years, and was a member of the parish church and the Mothers’ Union.