CWG: Sergeant Archibald Mills

Sergeant Archibald Mills

Archibald Henry Mills was born in the summer of 1895, the oldest of six children to John and Edith. John was a commercial traveller, selling veterinary wares around the country; he was born in Derby, Edith was from Leicester and, for the for the first seven years of their married life they lived in Edith’s home town – this is where Archibald was born. By the turn of the century, however, they had relocated to Somerset, and set up home in Weston-super-Mare.

When he left school, Archibald found work as an errand boy for a local tailor, but change was on the horizon. By the summer of 1914, he had based himself in Nottingham – the reason is lost to time – and this is where he was when he volunteered for military service.

Archibald enlisted as a Private in the Notts and Derby Regiment – the Sherwood Foresters – and was assigned to the 7th Battalion. He was sent to France as part of the 46th Division and, over the next couple of years, he evidently served his regiment well.

In August 1915, Private Mills was promoted to Lance Corporal; three months later he was again promoted, to Corporal. By May the following year, he received another rise, this time to Serjeant. These promotions were against the backdrop of some fierce fighting – the Sherwood Foresters were involved at Hooge, Hohenzollern and Gommecourt, and were briefly sent to Egypt.

At some point during the summer of 1916 – possible at Gommecourt – Archibald was injured, and medically evacuated to the No.2 Western General Hospital in Manchester. Sadly, however, his wounds were to prove too much: Serjeant Mills passed away on the night of 30th September 1916. He was just 21 years old.

The body of Archibald Henry Mills was brought back to Somerset; he was laid to rest in the Milton Road Cemetery of his adopted home town of Weston-super-Mare.


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