Gassed less than a week after his 18th birthday

Sonning men were serving their country, and one teenager – only just 18 – had lost his life.

THE WAR
We congratulate Captain G. E. A. Leake on his obtaining his Captaincy. His promotion has been extraordinarily rapid. He was gazetted Captain in the 3rd 4th City of London Regiment, Royal Fusiliers, to date from February 5.

EGGS FOR THE WOUNDED
Miss B Leake has organised at the School a capital system of collecting eggs for the wounded. Anyone who has no connection with the School can send eggs through any of the schoolchildren.

ROLL OF HONOUR
It is with great sorrow that we heard of the death of Private William Henry Hill. He only reached the age of 18 on April 24th, and was gassed on April 30th. He will be remembered by many as a small choir boy, and also for a short time as one of the Scouts. At the time of enlisting at the age of 16, he was a servant at a Club at Guildford, frequented by military men. Mr Leake has received a letter from the Club speaking in the warmest terms of his services, and how he had won the esteem of every one of the officers. His father and grandparents have our deepest sympathy. He was in the 8th Batt. Queen’s Royal West Surrey Regiment.

Sulhamstead parish magazine, June 1916 (D/EX725/3)

Scouts and the war

The Boy Scout movement had militaristic undertones from the start, and it is no surprise that young men who had been involved with it were among those who joined the services. These Sulhamstead men were typical:

THE SCOUTS AND THE WAR
The following connected with the Sulhamstead and Ufton Scouts are now serving with His Majesty’s Forces:-

W N Carter (Assistant Scout master), Lieutenant, Queen Victoria Rifles, 9th City of London
W G Collings (Assistant Scout Master), 2nd Lieut., King’s Shropshire L. Inf. Territorials
S T Price (Assistant Scout Master), 4th Wilts
Wm Halfacree (Scout), HMS Victory
Wm Tigwell (Scout), HMS Venerable
Ed. Tuttle (Patrol Leader), 1st Berks

Captain Norris, CA (Assistant Scout Master), formerly Church Army Officer in charge of the Lower End is also reported to have joined the Forces.

The following Scouts have volunteered for the Scouts Defence Corps:-

Albert Hannington
George Butler
Alfred Bracey

This list may be further increased.

Sulhamstead parish magazine, February 1915 (D/EX725/3)