31 May 2012

Pte 18303 Walter Hardcastle

Walter Hardcastle was born in Leyton in 1897, the son of a gasworks lighterman and a dress machinist. By 1911 he was living at 15 Radlix Road. He was an original volunteer in the West Ham Battalion and served with them from initial training over on Wanstead up until final disbandment in early 1918 in France. I have an idea that he was a member of the HQ Company, part of C Company.

(copyright: Jeff Hardcastle)

On disbandment, Walter was transferred to the 10th battalion of the Essex where he went on to display great bravery in the later stages of the war, which was rewarded with not only the Military Medal but he was also honoured by the people of France who awarded him the Croix Du Guerre.

Walter died, aged 63, in 1960.