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Frederick Wilder was born in Walton Le Dale, Lancashire on 8th November 1888 and was christened at St Leonard’s Church a month later.  His father was also named Frederick, his mother named Sarah.  The 1891 census shows the family (see below) living at 76 Chorley Road, Walton Le Dale.

st leonard

The Parish Church of St Leonard, Walton-le-Dale

Frederick Wilder aged 37
Sarah Wilder aged 33
Elizabeth Wilder aged 13
Thomas Wilder aged 11
Alfred Wilder aged 9
James Wilder aged 5
Sarah A Wilder aged 3
Frederick Wilder aged 2
Emily Wilder aged 0

Fred married Annie (nee Woon) at the Parish Church in Preston on 18th December 1909.  His elder brother Alfred acted as witness for the wedding as their father had by this time died.  Frederick and Annie had at least four children, Edith born 18th  May 1912 and Daniel born 15th April 1915 (post war they had two more girls, Peggy and Freda).  Before the war he worked as a cotton weaver at Bradley Brothers cotton manufacturers at Barnoldwick. Annie worked as a spinner.

Frederick Wilder enlisted in the Territorial Force on 3rd August 1914, the day before Britain declared War on Germany.  He was posted into the 4th (Territorial) Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and given the service number 33.

Private Fred Wilder sailed to France with the main body of the 1/4th Battalion on 4th May 1915. A month later, on 15th June 1915 he was wounded in action. He was admitted to No. 4 Casualty Clearing Station suffering the effects of Shell Shock.  He was transferred to Lillers, Boulogne and Rouen before rejoining his Battalion in the Field on 31st August 1915.

On 28th September 1915 Fred was admitted to the Meerut British General in Rouen suffering from influenza and measles. He was sent back to the UK on H. S. St. George and to the Connaught Hospital in Aldershot for further treatment.


Over the New Year period of 1916, whilst at Heaton Park, Fred was reprimanded for overstaying his ‘pass’.  He was meant to return to the camp on 30th December 1916, but hadn’t showed up till 22:00hrs on 2nd January 1917.  He was punished by being confined to barracks for four days and losing four days pay. On 28th August 1917 Fred was transferred to the Labour Centre at Oswestry and worked with 362nd Employment Company (No. 218576).  

The following month he was transferred to the Army Service Corps at Woolwich and given the number T/384335 and was posted for duty as a driver at the HQ of the Kent Force.  In late January 1918 he was working in support of the 13th Cyclist Battalion based at Sevenoaks.

Later at the time of his discharge, a medical officer gave an overview of Fred’s continuing sickness;

States he had (unk) in September 1915.  He was transferred to England in December 1915 with Rheumatism.  He felt quite fit until December 1917 when transferred to A.S.C.   In April 1918 contracted Syphilis and complains of having felt unwell throughout Summer 1918.  He spent 50 nights at Shorncliffe hospital until tests in September 1918 proved Negative

Private Frederick Wilder was disembodied on 15th May 1919 at Canterbury. He had spent just over four years in Army. He was awarded the 1914/15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal in recognition of his service.  His applications for a War pension were rejected.

Frederick Wilder died in Todd Lane, Preston in 1952,  Annie died two years later.

Paul McCormick
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One Response to 33 PTE. F. WILDER. L.N.LAN.R

  1. Rod Lund says:

    Excellent research Paul. Will notify the rest of the family so they can have a browse through what you found

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