The AIF Project

William Joseph Hugh WALDREN

Regimental number717
Place of birthFlemington, Victoria
SchoolKensington and Flemington State schools, Victoria
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationCompositor
AddressVentnor, 82 South Street, Ascot Vale, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Height5' 10"
Weight162 lbs
Next of kinMrs M Waldren, Ventnor, 82 South Street, Ascot Vale, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed for 3 years in the Junior Cadets, and 3 years in the 6th Australian Infantry Regiment.
Enlistment date19 August 1914
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name6th Battalion, F Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/23/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A20 Hororata on 19 October 1914
Regimental number from Nominal Roll2812
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll46th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 28 September 1917
Place of death or woundingYpres, Belgium
Age at death24.5
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 27), Belgium

The Menin Gate Memorial (so named because the road led to the town of Menin) was constructed on the site of a gateway in the eastern walls of the old Flemish town of Ypres, Belgium, where hundreds of thousands of allied troops passed on their way to the front, the Ypres salient, the site from April 1915 to the end of the war of some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

The Memorial was conceived as a monument to the 350,000 men of the British Empire who fought in the campaign. Inside the arch, on tablets of Portland stone, are inscribed the names of 56,000 men, including 6,178 Australians, who served in the Ypres campaign and who have no known grave.

The opening of the Menin Gate Memorial on 24 July 1927 so moved the Australian artist Will Longstaff that he painted 'The Menin Gate at Midnight', which portrays a ghostly army of the dead marching past the Menin Gate. The painting now hangs in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, at the entrance of which are two medieval stone lions presented to the Memorial by the City of Ypres in 1936.

Since the 1930s, with the brief interval of the German occupation in the Second World War, the City of Ypres has conducted a ceremony at the Memorial at dusk each evening to commemorate those who died in the Ypres campaign.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
142
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Charles George and Margaret WALDREN
Family/military connectionsBrother: 7576 Pte Charles Martin WALDREN, 7th Bn, returned to Australia, 3 September 1919.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Medical Board found him to be medically unfit (chronic synovitis, left knee: condition linked to heavy marching practice in January 1915; admitted to hospital, 6 February 1915). Commenced return to Australia on board 'Beltana', 13 October 1915. Discharged, 19 November 1915. Enlisted for Home Service. Discharged from Home Service.

Attested for AIF, 10 May 1916. Re-embarked from Melbourne with 46th Bn, 6th Reinforcements, on board 'Port Lincoln', 20 October 1916. Transferred to 'Argyllshire' at Sierra Leone, 16 December 1916; disembarked Devonport, England, 10 January 1917.

Attended the 34th Bayonet Training Course, Aldershot, of 21 working days in the special and supplementary Physical Training Tables and Bayonet Fighting, 17 July 1917.

Proceeded overseas to France, 5 September 1917; joined 46th Bn, 16 September 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 28 September 1917.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

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