Walter Roy Williams


The paternal grandfather was Joseph Williams, a dentist, born in 1834 in Manchester. He married Emily Ann Taylor on 15 February 1860 at Union Chapel, Chorlton. They had 3 children, Ernest, Herbert Appleton (Walter’s father) and Emily. Emily Ann died in Chorlton in 1875. Joseph was subsequently married again to Sarah Kate Tattersall in 1878 in Preston and they had 8 children. By 1891 they had moved to London. The maternal grandfather was Thomas Brown Heys, calico printer, born in Stockport and deceased by 1884. The maternal grandmother was Mary Walford Binns, born in Oldham. Thomas and Mary married on 25 March 1854 at Manchester Cathedral. Thomas was 23 at the time and a salesman and he lived at 33 Radnor St, Hulme. Mary was 21 and lived at 24 Robert St, Oxford Rd.


Walter’s father was Herbert Appleton Williams, born on 23 January 1863 in Manchester. He died on 25 July 1908. His mother was Mary Walford Heys, born on 7 January 1862 in Manchester. She was baptised on 4 February 1862 in Manchester Cathedral. In 1871 she was 9 years old and living at 186 Upper Brook St with her parents, 5 siblings, 3 aunts and a servant. By 1881 her father had died and her mother was head of the household. She lived with her mother and 2 sisters at 8 May St.

The parents married on 29 November 1884 at St John Chrysostom, Victoria Park. At the time of the marriage, Herbert was living at 25 Weymouth St, Chorlton on Medlock. By 1911 Mary was in Withington Infirmary (she died on 10 July 1812).


Walter was born in Manchester in 1891 and was baptised at Christ Church on 19 August 1891 when the family was living at 9 Warwick Avenue, West Didsbury. He had 4 siblings including George Herbert, born on 28 February 1886, described on the 1901 census as an imbecile from birth. George died on 25 May 1905. The others were Frank Taylor, Harold and Frederick. In 1901 their address was 26 Central Rd, Withington. His father was described as a manufacturing commercial agent. By 1911 the family were still in Central Rd, consisting of 4 boys and a maternal aunt. Walter is described as a manufacturing agent and merchant of haberdashery goods.

Walter married Alice Ellen Morrey in Wem in February 1913. Alice was born on 25 December 1877 and she died on 27 October 1913 of acute appendicitis and intestinal obstruction. She is buried in the family grave in Southern Cemetery. Walter became engaged in 1914 to Hilda Haines but they never married. According to a living relative of Hilda with whom we have been in contact, Hilda’s father had a clothier and outfitter’s shop in Grantham and Walter may have supplied the shop. After Walter signed up he was posted to Belton Camp near Grantham. Hilda visited him at the camp and in Manchester. Hilda died in 1976, having given her engagement ring to her great niece who treasures it to this day.

Walter served as a sergeant in the 16th (Service) Battalion of the Manchester Regiment, service number 6326. He is believed to have been wounded on active service on the Somme and was hospitalised in the University War Hospital in Southampton, where he died on 17 July 1916. He is buried in the family grave with his parents, brother George and his wife of 8 months. The grave in Southern Cemetery is reference number B 717.

Probate was awarded on 8 September 1916 to brother Frank Taylor Williams in the sum of £273 14s 7d. Walter’s address is given as 12a Grove Terrace, Burton Rd, Withington.