Biography of Private John William Birch (12767)
7th Lincolnshire Regiment
Died 29th April 1917


  • Name: John Willie Birch
    Date of birth: 1889
    Place of Birth: Little Bytham, Lincolnshire, England
    Date of Birth Registration: January – March 1886
    Place of Birth Registration: Bourne, Lincolnshire, Lincolnshire

  • Name: Thomas Birch
  • DOB: 1856
  • Place of Birth: Sproxton, Leicestershire, England
  • Occupation: Woodman (forester)

  • Name: Mary Jane King
  • DOB: 1861
  • Place Of Birth: Little Bytham, Lincolnshire, England
  • Marriage: 1885 Bourne District
Siblings: (Name), (DOB), (POB)

  • Sarah Elizabeth King, 1881, Little Bytham (Half sister)
    Cicely Kate King, 1883, Little Bytham (Half sister)
    Sarah Emily Birch, 1886, Little Bytham
    Florence A Birch, 1888, Little Bytham
    John Willie Birch, 1889, Little Bytham
    Charlie Birch, 1891, Edenham
    Lottie Birch, 1894, Edenahm
    Ethel Birch, 1896, Lound
    Hilda Birch, 1898, Lound
    Ida Birch, 1899, Lound

  • 1891: John is living with his parents in Edenham, Lincolnshire
  • 1901: John is living with his parents in Lound, Lincolnshire
  • 1911: John is living with his parents at Witham on the Hill, Lincolnshire. The census gives him an age of 22 and he is listed as a bricklayer labourer.
Relatives in services

  • None found

  • Name: Lily Pinfold
  • Date of birth: 1894
  • Place of Birth: Gee Cross, Cheshire


  • Date of Marriage: between January  and March 1917
  • Place of Marriage: Leicester District


  • Charles W Birch, 23 January 1917, Leicester Distirct
Wife’s parents

  • Father: Thomas Pinfold
  • Mother: Martha Henson
Newspaper Mentions

  • Grantham Journal Saturday 19th May 1917
    THE VERY DISTRESSING NEWS has reached Mr and Mrs Birch to the effect that their eldest son, Signaller J W Birch has died of wounds in France. Information had been received stating he was seriously wounded  by gunshot on April 24th and was in critical condition and later the sad news came of is death on April 29th. Signaller Birch enlisted in the Lincolnshire Regiment on Sept 14th 1914 and went abroad in July 1915, being slightly wounded in the hand some month ago. He was 28 years of age and leave a wife and one child. Deceased was a perfect type of Englishman of fine physique and a generous kind-hearted disposition and will be greatly missed. A memorial service was held in St Andrew’s Church, Witham on the Hill on Sunday. Signaller Birch was buried in a British Cemetery near the hospital where he died.

    Grantham Journal Saturday 27th April 1918
    In loving memory of John William Birch (our Billie) who died of wounds after the Battle of Arras, April 29th 1917 aged 28 years.
    “No loved one stood beside him
    To hear his last farewell;
    No wood of comfort could be have
    From those he loved so well.
    He has gone from us
    We must go to him;
    He will not return to us.”
    Sadly missed by FATHER, MOTHER, WIFE, BROTHER and SISTERS (manthorpe, Bourne)

    Grantham Journal Saturday 3rd May 1919
    BIRCH – In memory of John William Birch, Signaller, who died in the Battle of Arras, wounded April 24th, died April 29th 1917 aged 28 years.
    “On the heart that cartel for thee
    Rest thou, then, from sorrow free,
    For of all moat tender brothers,
    None so good as He.
    He has gone from us;
    We must go to him;
    He will not return.”
    From his loving WIFE, CHILD, FATHER, MOTHER, BTOTHERS and SISTERS (Manthorpe, Bourne).

Military Records

Attestation Papers

  • None found
Soldier’s Died In The Great War

  • These records show that Private William Birch, 12767, 7th Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment was killed in action on 29th April 1917 in the Western European Theatre in France and Flanders.

Pension Records

  • Available

Effects Left To

  • Widow Lily

  • The British Medal
    The Victory Medal
    The 15 Star


  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission:
  • In memory of Private John William Birch, 12767, 7th Battalion, Lincolnshire Regiment who died on 29 April 1917 Age 28
    Husband of Lily Birch, of 32 Henry St, Leicester
    Remembered with honour, Etaples Military Cemetery.

© Picture taken by South Lincolnshire War Memorials

© Picture taken by South Lincolnshire War Memorials

Military Service Timeline

  • Enlisted in Grantham


  • This is ongoing research and will be posted when completed

  • WW1 Soldier’s Records (
    Commonwealth War Graves Commission
  • British Newspaper Archive.

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