William DRAKE

William Drake

William, the son of Harry Drake, farm labourer and Annie Elizabeth (née Blowers), was born in Mundford in 1895. The family were living at the Field Barn in Weeting when William enlisted with the Norfolk Regiment on 11th November 1914.

His service with the Norfolk's was presumably satisfactory, as he was made up to Lance Corporal (acting, unpaid) in August 1915. That November he was transferred to the Border Regiment and his rank confirmed (and he got the pay increase as well).

On 4th January 1916 William was posted to the 6th Battalion. In April 1917 he was promoted to full Corporal, with pay and seniority back-dated to February 28th.

No 1 Casualty Clearing Station, France sent a telegram to the regiment on 8th November 1917 advising that Corporal Drake was dangerously ill as a result of a bullet wound to his back. This was followed two days later by confirmation of his death on 9 November 1917. He is buried in Chocques Military Cemetery.

In May 1919 his mother Annie, then living at Heath Farm, Feltwell wrote to the army requesting a King's Certificate in commemoration of her son.

Harry, Annie and William's younger brother Harry Junior (than aged 16) emigrated to New Zealand in December 1920. Four years later Annie was still waiting for Williams medals and certificate. A final note in the Army file records that the medals were returned to the Medals section, apparently undeliverable.

Victory Medal

British War Medal

The information presented here has been derived from surviving public and military records as well as from contemporary press reports. We hope you find it of interest ‐ if you think we have made an error, or can add any further details, please get in touch.