Corporal 1041 The West Yorkshire Regiment

Later commissioned 2nd Lieutenant 9th Battalion KOYLI 2/07/15

1890: William Herbert Leason, a domestic coachman, married Dinah Waterworth, in Scarborough, in September.(Free BMD website) Dinah was from Ganton, York, and by

1901: the family was living in York, at 15 Compton Street. They had two sons, Thomas Herbert, born in Ganton in September 1891, and John William, born in Ganton two years later.(Free BMD website)

1911: On this census the family is shown at Hall Lodge, Cookridge Horsforth, Adel cum Eccup, Yorkshire. Presumably William was employed there as a coachman.(Census records)  Thomas, meanwhile, after two years at Leeds Training College, had returned to Horsforth National School as an assistant master.

1914: When war was declared Thomas was 22, and would appear to have volunteered fairly early.  His service record is missing, and it is not clear from his army number which battalion he was in, though a newspaper article published at the time of his death states that he had originally joined the Leeds Pals (Saville p.42). This has now been confirmed by his officer records, which show that he enlisted in the Pals on 24th September 1914, reached the rank of corporal and was then discharged to a commision on 2nd September 1915.  His medal card shows that he served in France, but no date is given.

1915: He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the KOYLI, and a little over a year later, on 16th September,

1916: he died of wounds and was buried in Dartmoor Cemetery, Becordel-Becourt, Somme, France. He is also named on the Horsforth Cenotaph and on a memorial stone in Horsforth Cemetery, where he is given as the son of William and Dinah Leason, of The Lodge, Cookridge Hall, and his age given as 25.

He was subsequently awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal, and his parents are listed on the Medal Card as
Father WH Leason esq. of Poets Place, Long Row, Horsforth, Nr Lancs (sic)
Mother Mrs WH Leason, of 1 King’s Mead, Wakefield Road, Pontefract, Yorks
Whether there is any significance in the two separate addresses I don’t know, but William was presumably still working.(Medal Card)  It may be that one was a tied cottage, or even a retirement cottage.

Researcher: Peter Taylor

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