The AIF Project


Regimental number5514
Place of birthReefton, New Zealand
Other NamesHenry William
SchoolKurri Kurri Superior Public School, New South Wales
Age on arrival in Australia6 weeks
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationMilk carter
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation19
Height5' 4"
Weight125 lbs
Next of kinGrandparent, Mrs M Williams, Edward Street, Kurri Kurri, New South Wales
Enlistment date25 September 1915
Place of enlistmentHolsworthy, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentDriver
Unit nameField Artillery Brigade 1, Reinforcement 11
AWM Embarkation Roll number13/29/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A71 Nestor on 11 October 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll1st Field Artillery Brigade
FateKilled in Action 5 November 1916
Place of death or woundingFlers, France
Age at death from cemetery records20
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
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Katherine M. and the late William Henry WILLIAMS
Family/military connectionsFive uncles in theNew Zealand Expeditionary Force killed in action.
Other details

War service: joined the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (Gallipoli), 18 November 1915.

Admitted to 4th Auxiliary Hospital, Egypt, 18 November 1915 (sore throat, coughing); rejoined unit from Suez Road camp, 9 December 1915.

Appointed Trumpeter, Tel el Kebir, 16 February 1916.

Transferred to 2nd Battery, 17 February 1916.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 21 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 29 March 1916.

Wounded in action, 5 June 1916 (contusion and flesh wound, scalp), and admitted to 3rd Field Ambulance; transferred to 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station, 7 June 1916; discharged to duty, 11 June 1916.

Killed in action, 5 November 1916.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, WILLIAMS Henry

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