The battle of Gallipoli, the fight to wrest control of the strategically important straits from the Turkish army in the Dardanelles in 1915, involved men from Herefordshire, Australia and New Zealand. Ironically it also cost the life of one former Hereford lad who had emigrated to Australia.
Postman William Charles was one of four sons of police constable William Charles and his wife Hannah who lived at 3 DeLacy Street until they moved to Park Street. William emigrated after reading an article in the parish magazine about ‘the happy useful life’ that Australia promised.
The 20-year-old was working on cattle stations when war broke out, writes Judith Morgan. He joined the Australian Imperial Force in April 1915, but died at Gallipoli alongside many of his former Herefordshire mates that August.
The story has a sad footnote. William’s older brother, Jim, enlisted in the Royal Field Artillery five months after his brother was killed. He survived fighting in France and the influenza epidemic of 1919. In 1923 Jim (far left, middle row), who was engaged to one Nellie Davies, was killed decommissioning a faulty shell at Credenhill. According to the inquest his was the second death at the munitions stores.