The AIF Project

Lewis Alexander ROBERTSON

Regimental number3151
Place of birthFremantle, Western Australia
SchoolState School, Fremantle, Western Australia
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationCleaner
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Height5' 8"
Weight140 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Hannah Robertson c/o C Deram, Chester Street, South Fremantle, Western Australia
Previous military serviceNil (previously rejected on account of varicocele: 'since operated on')
Enlistment date9 August 1915
Place of enlistmentBlackboy Hill, Western Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name11th Battalion, 10th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/28/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board HMAT A32 Themistocles on 13 September 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll11th Battalion
Other details from Roll of Honour CircularServed in Cadets until 18; thereafter in the Artillery. (details from mother)
FateKilled in Action 20-23 August 1916
Age at death from cemetery records21
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
63
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: John and Hannah ROBERTSON, 34 Charles Street, South Fremantle, Western Australia
Family/military connectionsBrother: 2717 Lance Corporal Frederick ROBERTSON, 11th Bn, died of wounds, 26 December 1917; Cousin: 330 Pte Henry William STANTON, 44th Bn, killed in action, 22 August 1918.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Joined 6th Bn, Tel el Kebir, 7 January 1916Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 29 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 3 April 1916.

Killed in action, France, 20-23 August 1916.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, ROBERTSON Lewis Alexander

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