CWG: Driver William Allen

Driver William Allen

There are some times where no amount of research on a person will reveal their information.

William George Allen is one such person.


The only details I have been able to uncover for this man is his gravestone and the Army Register of Soldier’s Effects.

William Allen was a driver for the Royal Field Artillery. His troop – the 156th Camberwell Brigade – was raised in South London in early 1915, although I have no record of when Driver Allen enlisted.

At some point, the 156th Brigade were stationed at Port Victoria – the fort on the Isle of Grain in Kent.

It was during their time at the fort that William died. He passed on 7th August 1916 and there is no cause of death recorded, and he does not appear in any contemporary newspapers. This might suggest that his death was not out of the ordinary or unexpected.

Unusually for the Register of Soldier’s Effects, nobody is listed for the war gratuity payments to be made (this would normally be a next of kin – father, mother or spouse). In total a payment of £6 19s 2d was paid out, not an extravagant amount for that regiment.

So Driver Allen remains a mystery. A (presumably) young life lost too soon, and lost to time.

William George Allen lies at peace in the graveyard of St James’ Church in Grain, North Kent, metres from the fort in which he passed.


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