13th February 1917

Private Sidney Britt died of wounds on 13th February 1917, serving with the 4th Battalion, South Wales Borderers. He was the youngest of ten children from Elmdon, three of whom died in the war. Serving regular soldier, Albert Henry, was killed in 1914 and his brother, William Henry (who served in the militia 1900-1902) died in November 1917. Sidney was the second of the brothers to die in the war.

Sidney’s parents, William (a bricklayer) and Mary (née Alldritt) had married in Bickenhill in 1877. In 1911, aged 18, Sidney was working as a plate layer on the railway. Great Western Railway employment records (available free of charge from library computers via the Ancestry website) show that in March 1913, he joined the GWR as a parcels carman at Knowle & Dorridge Station, and that he suffered an accident on 14th August 1914, when he was bitten by a horse. In October 1914, he left the railways to serve with the colours.

In 1915, he married Lucy May Hands and their son, Norman William, was born on 15th May 1917, three months after his father’s death. Norman married Gwendoline Griffiths in 1939, and died in 2004, aged 86.

Sidney died of wounds on 13th February 1917, and is buried at Amara War Cemetery, Iraq. He is commemorated locally on war memorials at Elmdon, Knowle and Solihull. He is also commemorated on the Great Western Railway roll of honour, a copy of which is on display at Birmingham Moor Street Station.

If you have any further information, please let us know.

Heritage & Local Studies Librarian

tel.: 0121 704 6977
email: heritage@solihull.gov.uk

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