This site commemorates the men and women of Collingham, Linton and Micklethwaite who served during World War 1.
Midgley, Reginald Walter

Rank and Unit at End of World War One

Rank Sergeant

Service Number 23940

Service Army

Battalion 66 Divisional Ammunition Column

Regiment Royal Field Artillery

Pre-war Occupation*/marital status**

Trade or Occupation pre-war: Groom
Marital status: Married

* Taken from attestation papers or 1911 census
** Marital status on enlistment or at start of war
Connection with Collingham, Linton or Micklethwaite and reason for inclusion on this web site
  • Lived in Collingham, Linton or Micklethwaite immediately prewar or during the war
  • Named on printed lists of villagers in The Wetherby News or Collingham Parish Magazine
  • Named as an Absent Voter due to Naval or Military Service on the 1918 or 1919 Absent Voter list for Collingham, Linton or Micklethwaite


Family background

Reginald Walter Midgley was born in 1880 in Cawthorn near Barnsley, the son of Thomas Midgley.

Reginald attested in the Army in Sheffield in 1902 and joined in Preston on the 19th June 1902. He joined on a short service contract of three years service plus 9 years on the reserve.

In 1911, we can find Reginald living at Compton, Collingham as a boarder with James Robert Levitt, and giving his profession as a Groom. On the 4th February 1913, Reginald married Hilda Fozzard in Wetherby. Reginald still gave his trade as a Groom. Later in 1913 they had a son Ronald Trevor Midgley.

Service record

Reginald would have been reaching the limit of his reserve service in 1914 as the war started and he was immediately mobilised into No. 4 Section of 2nd Divisional Ammunition Column (DAC) of the Royal Field Artillery. The Divisional Ammunition Column was responsible for the supply of ammunition to the Guns and we can imagine that Reginald's skills as a Groom would have been desperately needed in keeping the horses fit and well to transport the vast amounts of ammunition needed.

As an experienced soldier, Reginald's skills would have been invaluable and he was promoted a number of times: to Acting Bombadier (30th Sept 1914), Bombadier (20th Feb 1915) and Corporal (30th Sept 1915) and Sergeant (5th Dec 1916); all in 2nd DAC.

On the 26th February 1915, the Wetherby News published a letter that Reginald had written to them about his experiences and his wishes for the future:

Wetherby News 26 February 1915

Our Soldiers Nothing to Grumble at.
We have this week received the following letter from the front:-
Dear Sir, - I have just received from my wife a copy of the "Wetherby News," and considering I have been out here since August, you can guess it gave me great pleasure to read about local affairs. Well, I will now try and tell you about the times we have had since the commencement of the war. I was in the retreat from Mons - a time I shall never forget. I was also at the Marne and Aisne, and at Ypres. But taking everything all round we don't have a bad time. I am Acting Quarter-Master Sergeant to my section, so I am kept fairly busy, as I have to see that they get provisions, clothing, and everything else that is required. I am at present billeted in quite a comfortable farm house, and I get on all right. Of course we are all anxious for the war to have a speedy conclusion, but we really have got nothing to grumble at. I should very much like to get a "Wetherby News" every week, as I always got one when at home. You can tell the Wetherby lads from me that they can do much worse than join the Army. I am not a native of Wetherby, but I am quite well known there, as I was with Mr. Dalby, of Compton, for about five years.
Yours sincerely,
Bombadier Royal Field Artillery.

P.S. - I should very much like to be home for the Wetherby Races at Easter, as I have not missed a meeting for several years.


Unfortunately, Reginald's wishes did not come true and it was another three and a half years before the war ended.

In 1918, Reginald completed the Absent Voters list and gave his address as Compton, Collingham.

Reginald's service record is then silent about his service until the 7th April 1918 when he was still serving with 2nd DAC when he was Mentioned in Despatches. A few months later, on the 2nd September 1918, Reginald was posted to Base before onwards posting on the 18th September to 66th DAC. This posting coincided with a furlough back to the UK from 19th October to 2nd November 1918. This furlough was probably on compassionate grounds, as on the 29th October 1918, we have found a record that his wife, Hilda, died in the great influenza pandemic. Reginald returned to France on the 3rd November 1918, just in time for the end of the War. He remained in France until the 19th January 1919 when he was posted to base on his way back to the UK which he reached on the 20th January 1919.

After the war

Reginald's service still did not end as he stayed in the Army being transferred to a Dispersal Centre before transfer to the Army Reserve (Class Z) on the 18th February 1919. His final discharge from the Army was on the 31st March 1920.

Biography last updated 06 January 2020 16:29:24.


1911 Census. The National Archives. Class RG14 Piece 25962
The Wetherby News 26/2/1915
The Collingham Parish Magazine Jan 1915
First World War Medal Index Cards. The National Archives (WO372).
First World War Medal Index Rolls. The National Archives (WO329).
First World War British Army Service Records. The National Archives (WO363).

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