The AIF Project

Thomas James ANDERSON

Regimental number5026
Place of birthBallyjamesduff, Co Cavan, Ireland
SchoolRamon National School, Ireland
Age on arrival in Australia21
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationStation hand
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation24
Height5' 6"
Weight140 lbs
Next of kinFather, Mr G. Anderson, Lishenry, Ballyjamesduff, Co Cavan, Ireland
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date17 January 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll17 January 1916
Place of enlistmentLiverpool, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name4th Battalion, 16th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/21/4
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board SS Makarini on 1 April 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll4th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 2 March 1917
Place of death or woundingBapaume, France
Date of death2 March 1917
Age at death from cemetery records25
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: George and Mary ANDERSON, Lishenry, Ballyjamesduff, Ireland
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front.

Embarked Sydney, 1 April 1916; disembarked Suez, 1 May 1916.

Admitted to government hospital, Suez, 3 May 1916 (syphilis), transferred to 1st Australian Dermatological Hospital, Abbassia, 5 May 1916; discharged to Australian Training Depot, Tel-el-Kabir, 3 July 1916; discharged to details (venereal disease gonorrhoea), Abassia, 5 July 1916.

Proceeded overseas to England, 29 July 1916; taken on strength of 1st Training Bn, 12 August 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France, 16 September 1916; marched out to 4th Bn, France, 30 September 1916.

Killed in action, 2 March 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal

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