Lance Corporal Thomas George Robinson died of wounds on 9th February 1918, serving with the 10th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment. Known as George, he was born in Copt Heath on 10th May 1895 and baptised at St Alphege Church, Solihull on 4th August 1895.
He was the eldest of eight siblings – Rose Ann (1898-1997), Winifred Edith (born 1901), Ellen May (born 1904), Gladys Evelyn (born 1907), Clara (born 1912) and John James (1915-1917). It seems there was another child who died as an infant sometime before 1911.
Parents William Robinson (a general labourer) and Edith Hassell married at St Alphege Church, Solihull in 1897 and lived in Copt Heath. By 1901, they had moved to Birmingham and were living in Rotton Park with their two young daughters. Their third daughter, Ellen May, known as May, was born in their father’s home town of Tipton in 1904, as was Gladys Evelyn in 1907. By 1911, the family had returned to Copt Heath, where George, aged 16, was living in the family home and recorded as a farm labourer.
George enlisted in the Army on 7th September 1914 with four friends from Copt Heath. He first entered a Theatre of War on 18th July 1915 and saw action at battles including Loos, Messines and Passchendaele. He was awarded a 1914/15 Star as a result of seeing overseas service before 31st December 1915.
In 1917, George’s mother Edith suffered the double blow of the deaths of her husband, William, and her youngest child, John James Robinson, who was just two years old.
Unpublished research by the late Alan Tucker indicates that George Robinson died after being hit in the head by a sniper. He is buried in Rocquigny-Equancourt Road British Cemetery, Manancourt and is also commemorated locally on Solihull War Memorial and in the Soldiers’ Chapel at Knowle Parish Church.
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