29 May 2016

9738 Pte Richard Watling, KOYLI

I picked up another 1914 Star trio PoW group this morning to 9738 Pte Richard Watling, King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry. There's plenty of research potential here, particularly as Richard's group also came with his son's Second World War medals.

Richard Watling was born in Heigham, Norwich on the 3rd February 1888 and joined the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry on the 11th June 1908. He was the son of William and Elizabeth Watling and by 1891 was the second youngest of seven children.

He entered France with the 2nd KOYLI on the 14th August 1914 and, according to his entry in the 1914 Star medal roll, was captured on the 30th December 1914. This is clearly incorrect as he appears on my Princess Mary tin database of men captured up to and including the 25th December 1914 and, furthermore, was reported as missing in The Times list published on the 26th October. He was certainly held at Sennelager PoW camp for some of his time in captivity and was repatriated in 1918, arriving at Hull on the 27th November. He was discharged on the 23rd March 1919.

By the time the 1939 Register was taken, Richard was living with his wife Maud (nee Parker) and two sons, Richard Herbert Arthur Watling (1920-1985) and Reginald D Watling (1924-1991) at 19 Salford Street, Norwich.

Richard Watling died on the 3rd May 1964 at the age of 76, probate of £1184 being granted to his son, Richard, insurance agent. At the time of his death his home address was recorded as 17 Woodcock Close, Norwich.

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