Topic: William Richardson

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William Richardson (Service no. 11725) was a First World War soldier with links to Sumner

Portrait of Private William Richardson from The Canterbury Times, 8 November 1916William Richardson had lived in New Zealand for only three years when he decided to enlist on 13th January 1916, at the age of 20.  He and his family had emigrated from Scotland and settled in Redcliffs. William, the oldest son of John and Rachel Richardson, was born in Whitwick, Lanarkshire, Scotland on 5th September 1895. His younger sister, Margaret, was born just a year later. For several years, the family lived near Glasgow in Scotland, where John worked as a shipwright.   When William left school he found work as an accountant’s assistant; on his arrival in New Zealand he was employed as a clerk by the Kaiapoi Woollen Company. He was a strapping young man, of 6 foot 2 inches, with light blue eyes and brown hair.

William left New Zealand for Suez, Egypt, aboard the Ulimaroa on 1st May 1916. At this time, he was a Private in C. Company, 12th Reinforcements. He served for four short months before being killed in action in the field in Somme, Northern France on 1st October, 1916. He is buried at Longueval, Somme. He earned the British War Medal and the Victory Medal which were presented to his family. Private William Richardson’s contribution to the war is remembered on the Sumner War Memorial Plaque at Matuku Takotako Sumner Centre on the corner of Wakefield Ave and Nayland St.

William’s family remained in Redcliffs for many years. His father passed away in 1945, at the age of 74 and his mother eight years later, in 1953. His sister Margaret never married, and was buried with her parents in the Ruru Lawn Cemetery, in 1974.

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William Richardson


First Names:William
Last Name:Richardson
Place of Birth:Whitwick, Lanarkshire, Scotland