Lives Lived and Lives Lost - Portsmouth and the Great War

William Benjamin Dicks was born in 1897 in Portsea and lost both his parents within two years; his mother Henrietta possibly dying in childbirth, whilst his father Benjamin died in 1899. The 1901 Census records him as living with his grandmother Elizabeth McCormack at 7 Carver's Court, Portsmouth, aged 3 years.
William enlisted in the army in Dover but we don't know any details of what happened to him thereafter apart from the record of his death. On 1st July 1918, as a member of the 2nd Battalion, the Bedfordshire Regiment he was killed in action in Flanders. He has no known place of burial.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission lists William Benjamin Dicks, Private (33184), 2nd Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment, died, 01/07/1918, aged 20 years, remembered on the Pozieres Memorial, Panel 28/29.
He is not commemorated in the National Roll (Section 10) but is remembered on the WW1 memorial outside St. Thomas's Church and the Cenotaph (where he is listed as BW Dicks).
Tim Backhouse
December 2013

To Cynthia Sherwood for her research