William Brunton was born circa 1920 the son of William Ross & Hannah Eleanor Brunton(nee Owen), and William’s Casualty Card states that he was born in Dolgelly, Merionethshire, but his Army Roll of Honour states that he was born in Caernavonshire, both state that his residence was London.N.
There are two birth Certificates that might match, but they would have to be obtained to confirm/deny. FREE BMD – Births Mar 1921 (>99%) – Brunton, William Mother’s maiden name – Owen (Dolgelly Vol. 11b, Page 589) and North Wales Birth indexes for the years: 1920 – BRUNTON, William (Barmouth Gwynedd (Caernarfon) DOLB1/35/E123). I believe his sister Madge was born in the same district – Barmouth in 1912.
There is a possible marriage of William Ross Brunton and Hannah E. Owen in the March quarter of 1912 in Newtown in the County of Montgomeryshire. (Newtown Vol. 11b Page 185).
I do not know anything about William’s early or teenage years, except for his admittance to his school with his siblings – Hawarden Grammar School Admissions Register E/GS/1/10
1818/2701BRUNTON, John Reid, Date of Birth – 4th May 1918, Lyndhurst, Hawarden, Father – Wool Stapler, Date of Entry – 21st October 1935. Transferred Dollgelly Gram. School. Date of leaving – 2nd April 1936. Civil Service Clerical Div.
1819/2702 BRUNTON, William, Date of Birth – 8th December 1920, Lyndhurst, Hawarden, Father – Wool Stapler, Date of Entry – 21st October 1935. Transferred Dollgelly Gram. School. Date of leaving – 26th July 1937 Civil Service – Died.
2848 BRUNTON, David Kenneth, Date of Birth – 13th September 1925, Lyndhurst, Hawarden, Father – Wool Merchant, Date of Entry – 16th July 1937. Hawarden N.P., Date of leaving – 26th February 1941 Engineer.
The family had obviously moved from the Dollgelly area circa 1935. William is also remembered on the Hawarden Grammar School Roll of Honour, please click on the link.
I found the family on the 1939 Register living in Hawarden, this register was taken on the 29th September 1939. They were living at Meadowcroft, Hawarden, William R. Brunton had been born on the 23rd Jun 1886 and was a Wool Merchant, Hannah E. Brunton, born on the 26th Aug 1891 and like most married on this Register without a job, she was doing “Unpaid Domestic Duties,” William’s sister, Madge Brunton born 16 May 1912 was a School Teacher and single, this Register also tell us that Madge married a gentleman with the surname of Cheetham and I found a marriage in Paddington in the December quarter of 1944 of a Madge Brunton and an Arthur N. Cheetham (Paddington Vol. 1a Page 134). It would have to be purchased to confirm/deny. There was a redacted or Closed Record on the Register as well.
On William’s gravestone, the Inscription states that there were “Brothers & Sisters,” giving the impression there were a few of each, so I have the births registrations of possible siblings from both North Wales BMD’s and FREE BMD for reference, please contact the website if you can add anything to William’s story and family.
His entry in the Royal Artillery Attestation sheds no light on when he entered the service, other than his name and Regimental No., the only thing that is entered is the date of his death – 2nd November 1940.
Likewise his Casualty Form only tells us the same, but he was “Home” and not abroad. Home meant in the UK, not his residence.
As I wanted to add more to William’s story and how he died I contacted the WW2 Talk website and asked for help there. One of the members, Steve, tells us a little of what was going on,, because of his family, many thanks to him for this information.
Hi Mavis, My uncle was called up in early December 1940 and posted to 360 Battery, 138 FR. I have his copy service record which shows that he joined his Battery in mid December at Llangattock near Crickhowell, Wales.
138 FR would likely be absorbing new recruits and undergoing training during that late 1940 period. They added 502 Battery in late 1940 as FR expanded to a 3 Battery strength.
Hopefully someone will be able to turn up your man’s RA Attestation record and you also may be lucky to find mention of his death circumstances in a newspaper.
I thought that he might have been involved in an accident, but, the Casualty List does not state he was in an accident, as others on the list were, he is listed as “Died,” so it seems that he died as a result of illness. His Casualty Card gives no indication either. I will look in the Newspapers for more information.
I found a death that might be his in the December quarter of 1940 – Brunton, William, age 19 ( E.Glamorgan Vol 11a Page 1344). Again, the same as above, he certificate would have to be purchased.
Any help to tell William’s story would be much appreciated. Just a little comment, as William died in 1940, yet his name was not put forward to be included in the Slate Rolls of Honour at the front of the War Memorial, his name, with several others are added to the coping stones at the top of the steps:-
Hawarden War Memorial
At the top of the steps, either side, on the top, looking forward , the names are written There are two names on each, they are WW2, but as the carving and stone are very old, it made me think at first they were from WW1! :-
Joseph WILLIAMS Sydney Walter BRYAN
William BRUNTON William ELLSUM
However, it seems that although the family may not have known about the Memorial, or whatever the reason, they went to an awful lot of trouble to get his name added later and as can be seen they weren’t the only family who missed the deadline. William was loved and missed by all his family and siblings. His parents were to die many years later, so they did suffer the loss of their son William, William R. Brunton was to die in the September quarter of 1960, age 74 years, and Hannah E. Brunton in the March quarter of 1961 age 69 years.
“GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN BY FATHER, MOTHER, BROTHERS AND SISTERS”