The WW1 Roll of Honour:
Surnames U - V

Sergeant 14030 Herbert Bernard Unwin


8th Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.                                            

Killed in Action 25th September 1916, Aged 21.

Comemmorated Thiepval Memorial pier & face 2c & 3a.       


Herbert Bernard Unwin, known to his family and friends as 'Bernard', was born in Loughborough in 1896, the son of Frederick and Ellen Unwin. Bernard's father was originally a framework knitter but became a labourer in an iron works and in 1901 the Unwin family lived at 22 Sparrow Hill, Loughborough. Bernard had two older brothers Charles and Joseph and four older sisters Ellen, Elizabeth, Frances and Mabel. Two other siblings died young. By 1911 the Unwin family had moved to 32 Rendell Street and Bernard, aged 15, was an apprentice brass moulder at the Brush Company works.

Bernard enlisted on 4th September 1914 and joined the 8th (Service) Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment as Private 14030. From the Depot he was sent firstly to Aldershot for training. He proved to be a very capable recruit and was quickly promoted to Lance Corporal on 5th November 1914 and to Corporal on 15th December 1914.

Bernard moved to Shorncliffe in Kent at the end of February 1915. In April 1915 Bernard's battalion became part of the newly established 37th Division of Kitchener's 2nd New Army and the Division began to concentrate on Salisbury Plain. On 25th June the units were inspected by King George V at Sidbury Hill. On 22nd July the Division began to cross the English Channel and Bernard travelled to France on 29th July 1915. Initially the 37th Division concentrated near Tilques.

The 8th Battalion then moved via Watten, Houlie, St. Omer, Eecke and Dranoutre to Wulverghem and Berles-au-Bois, a short distance from the front line. In the months that followed the 8th Battalion did tours in the trenches, alternating with the 6th Leicesters who relieved them. They were Involved in operations in Bailleul, Le Bizet, Armentières, Mondicourt, Beauval and Berles-au-Bois. Bernard was promoted again to Acting Sergeant on 14th December 1915.

In April 1916 Bernard had moved with the 8th Leicesters to the Doullens area for six weeks cleaning up, resting and training. On 10th May 1916 Bernard was confirmed in the position of Sergeant. In mid-May the battalion returned once more to the trenches in the Bienvillers-Bailleulmont sector, but nearer Gommecourt. In June there was a series of nightly excursions into No-Man's Land with patrols attempting to gather information on the enemy's dispositions. On other occasions there were working parties out repairing the British barbed wire entanglements. The situation became increasingly hazardous as the month wore on when the Germans began to use a new and more accurate type of trench mortar.

The 8th Battalion did not participate in the first days of the Somme Offensive but was held in reserve. On 6th July Bernard's battalion left billets at Humbercamps and marched to Talmas, continuing on the following day to billets in Soues. On 10th July the battalion marched to Ailly-sur-Somme, entrained for Méricourt and travelled from there by lorry to bivouacs in Méaulte. Between 10th and 13th July the battalion was in the trenches near Fricourt and subjected to fairly continuous enemy fire.

On the 14th July the battalion was in action at the Battle of Bazentin Ridge. After the battle the battalion withdrew to Ribemont and then to Méricourt, and having entrained for Saleux, marched to Soues. From Soues the battalion moved to Longeau, Gouy-en-Ternois, Lattre St. Quentin and then to Arras where they went into the trenches on 29th July. Casualty figures for the battalion in July had been high: 17 officers and 415 other ranks had been killed, wounded or were missing.

The battalion went into Divisional Reserve at Agnez-les-Ouisans on 8th August but went back into the trenches at Arras on 18th August where they were on the receiving end of trench mortar bombs and heavy shells until 2nd September. They were relieved on 2nd September and marched to Duisans and on the following day proceeded to Lignereuil. On 13th September they marched to Frevent and entrained for Dernancourt. On 15th they reached a point between Fricourt and Méaulte before proceeding to Trônes Wood on 16th.

From 17th-23rd September the battalion was in reserve and supporting the troops in the front line by providing carrying parties. In the evening of 24th September the battalion marched up to take their position ready for an attack but before they reached this point the men were heavily shelled by the enemy. Just after midday on 25th September the 8th Leicesters launched a successful attack in waves on the right of Flers and then pressed on to Gueudecourt, Considerable losses, however, were suffered in this action.

Bernard was killed in action on 25th September, aged 21. His officer conveyed the news of his death to his mother, and wrote: 'Dear Mrs. Unwin, I wish you to accept my deep sympathy with you at the loss of your son, Sergeant Bernard Unwin. I was away from the battalion at the time we were in the big battle and did not hear of the loss until my return. Sergeant Unwin was for a time my platoon Sergeant, and I always found him ready and willing to help me in any way he could. He was a splendid soldier and a good fellow in every way, and is missed by every man in the company'.

Bernard is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial Pier and Face 2C and 3A and on the memorial at All Saints Church, Loughborough, as well as on the Carillon.

Bernard's parents were left without any of their sons nearby as Bernard's brothers Charles and Joseph both emigrated to Australia. His sisters, however, all remained in Loughborough.

Private 241534 Ronald Unwin


1/5th Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.

Previously served as 4259 Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 29th April 1917, Aged 20.

Buried Bully-Grenay Communal Cemetery I. F. 16.

Also known as 'Ronald Onions'.

Ronald Unwin was born in Loughborough in 1896, his birth being officially registered as 'Ronald Onions'. He was the youngest child of Alma Onions and his wife Alice (née Hartshorn) and was baptised as 'Ronald Onions' at All Saints' Church, Loughborough, on 6th July 1897. Ronald's parents were married at Emmanuel Church, Loughborough on 24th July 1877, his father Alma, a framework knitter, using the name of 'Albert Onions'.

Ronald's entire family either varied their surname between Unwin and Onions or pronounced it in such a way that made it unclear. One vicar of All Saints' Parish Church in Loughborough entered a family baptism as 'Onions or Unwin'. Most census enumerators between 1851 and 1901 understood the surname to be Onions, but the 1871 enumerator thought it was Unwin. In 1911 Ronald's father clearly signed his census return as 'Alma Onions'. His death in 1932, however, was registered as 'Alma Unwin' while the death of Ronald's mother in 1915 was registered as 'Alice Onions'.

Ronald had four brothers Walter, Ernest, Fred and Arthur, and three sisters Florence, Emily and Eliza. Ronald's brothers Arthur and Walter tended to use the surname Unwin for official purposes.

In 1891 the family lived at 126 Station Road, Loughborough, but by 1901 had moved to 39 Union Street and Ronald's father had set up a house painting and decorating business. His father later moved to 123 Herrick Road. In 1911 Ronald, aged 14, was a grocer's errand boy.

The date of Ronald's enlistment is unknown but he joined the 1/5th Leicestershire Regiment as Private 4259 and was known as 'Ronald Unwin'. He was later re-numbered as Private 241534 and sent to France on 11th December 1915. When Ronald joined his battalion they were in billets at Merville, training, on route marches and on parades. Training continued at Thiennes from 19th December until Boxing Day when the battalion moved into billets at Aire.

In early January 1916 the battalion was sent to Marseilles to await transport to Egypt. They had only just embarked on H.M.T. Andania when orders came that they were to disembark and travel back to the Somme area of Picardy - Gallipoli had been successfully evacuated and they were no longer needed in Egypt. In mid-February orders came for the battalion to take over the line north of the River Ancre opposite Beaumont-Hamel. On 29th February the battalion moved to the area of Doullens where the men worked on improving the trenches despite being subjected to a considerable bombardment from the enemy with mines and craters being blown.

From 9th March 1916 the 1/5th Leicesters were in the area of Vimy Ridge, Pas de Calais, either in the front line, in support, in reserve or at rest. On 27th April the battalion was sent to the neighbourhood of Neuville St. Vaast to work with the French and English tunnellers and then to billets in Luchaux for bayonet training. This was followed by a period at Souastre digging cable trenches, and constructing bomb stores and gun pits in preparation for a 'big push'.

On 4th June 1916 the battalion was moved up to trenches near Gommecourt. This was followed by further training at Warlincourt. On 30th June the battalion assembled in a trench near Foncquevillers Church ready for the diversionary attack at Gommecourt on the first day of the Somme Offensive planned for 1st July.

On 1st July 1916 the 46th Division of the Army, of which the 1/5th Leicesters were part, had 2445 casualties at Gommecourt. Ronald survived this battle and on 3rd July went with his battalion into billets at Bienvillers. On 7th July they relieved the 4th Lincolnshires in the trenches opposite Essarts-lès-Bucquoy. The battalion remained in the area of Monchy-au-Bois until 29th October, either in the trenches or resting at Bienvillers or Pommier. The battalion's next move was to Millencourt for intensive battle training, returning to Halloy and then Souastre at the beginning of December.

The battalion remained at Souastre until 11th March 1917 and then moved once more up to the line taking over 2,600 yards of frontage from the La Brayelle road to the Hannescamps-Monchy road. On 17th March they moved into Gommecourt for road mending before moving to Bertrancourt, Raincheval and then Rainvillers not far from Amiens.

On 28th March the battalion marched to Saleux. entrained for Lillers in the north, and marched to Laires. Training took place until 13th April and continued for three further days at Manqueville, after which the battalion moved to the western outskirts of Lens. From there they marched to Bully-Grenay and went into the front line trenches where they were heavily shelled. Ronald was killed in action there on 29th April, aged 20.

Ronald was buried in Bully-Grenay Communal Cemetery Grave I. F. 16. He is remembered on the war memorial in the former St. Peter's Church building, Loughborough, and on the Carillon.

Private S/34157 Joseph Arthur Upton


Army Service Corps, Supply Section.                                            

Died of tuberculosis 11th July 1918, Aged 22.

Buried Loughborough Cemetery  45/171      


Joseph Arthur Upton was born in Loughborough in 1896 and baptised on 1st May 1896 at Emmanuel Church, Loughborough. He was the eldest son of Joseph Arthur Upton and his wife Harriett Rose (née Brewin) who were married at Emmanuel Church on 29th December 1895. Joseph Arthur Senior was a carter in 1895, a labourer in 1896, a grocer's porter in 1901 and a groom for a removal contractor in 1911.

Joseph Arthur Junior was one of seven surviving children out of ten born to Joseph Arthur Senior and Harriett, three children having died young. Joseph Arthur Junior had three brothers Roger, Edward and Herbert and three sisters Mabel, Dora and Florence. When Joseph Arthur Junior was born his parents were living at 58 Derby Road, Loughborough. By 1901 they had moved to 47 Regent Street to live with Harriett's widowed father William Brewin and Harriett's brother Arthur, a butcher's slaughterer. By 1905 the family had moved again to Cradock Street and by 1911 to 63 Oxford Street.

In August 1905, when he was nine years old, Joseph Arthur Junior was charged at Loughborough Petty Sessions with stealing a purse and money from the home of a widow Sarah Spencer in Buckhorn Square. The Bench ordered a punishment of three strokes with the birch. In 1912, aged sixteen, he was let off by the Bench on payment of 2s 6d costs for discharging fireworks in the street. The following year his father was fined 4s for riding an unlighted bicycle.

Joseph Arthur Junior began his working life in 1910 as an errand boy for a grocer, but between 1911 and 1914 he became a butcher. In 1913 he was in a sanatorium for six weeks with tuberculosis. His health must have significantly improved, however, as when he enlisted at Loughborough on 10th August 1914 and attended the medical examination Dr J. B. McLean pronounced him fit for army service. Joseph Arthur Junior was appointed as Private S/34157 to the Supply Section of the Army Service Corps.

The Army Service Corps (ASC), sometimes referred to in a joking, disparaging way as 'Ally Sloper's Cavalry', were the unsung heroes of the British Army in the Great War. Soldiers could not fight without food, equipment and ammunition. They could not move without horses or vehicles and it was the job of the ASC to provide them. In the Great War, the vast majority of the supply, maintaining a vast army on many fronts, came from Britain. Every bullet, blanket, bandage, artillery battery or tin of bully beef had to be manufactured and transported where and when it was required. By 1918 each Army Division of about 12,000 men needed about 1,000 tons of supplies every day, equivalent to two supply trains each of 50 wagons. Using horsed and motor vehicles, railways and waterways, the ASC performed prodigious feats of logistics and was one of the great strengths of organisation by which the war was won. At its peak, the ASC numbered 10,547 officers and 315,334 men.

As Joseph Arthur Junior was a butcher by trade when he enlisted it is likely that he was posted to the Field Bakeries and Butcheries Supply Section of the Army Service Corps. Reserve Supply Personnel depots (RSP) for the Army Service Corps were located at Aldershot, Bath, Hastings and Prees Heath and Joseph Arthur Junior was sent to Aldershot.

Joseph Arthur Junior's army service was, however, short-lived. In December 1914, when he was on leave in Loughborough, his health suddenly deteriorated and he needed continual medical treatment. According to the Army Medical Board proceedings at Leicester on 2nd February 1915 the diagnosis was 'Tubercle of the lung'. The Board recorded that Joseph Arthur Junior was 'Thin and anaemic [with] definitive movements of chest walls and pronounced signs of tubercule on both apices, more on the left, with cough and haemoptysis'. The Board agreed that Joseph Arthur Junior should be discharged from the Army as permanently unfit.

Joseph Arthur Junior officially left the Army on 16th March 1915. He was granted a pension and also a Silver War Badge No 82979. His health must have improved once more as he took a job as a clerk and on 31st July 1915 he married Mabel Beatrice Fletcher at Holy Trinity Church, Loughborough. The couple settled 8 Pleasant Row, Factory Street and their daughter Ivy was born in the early summer of 1916. Joseph Arthur Junior was now employed as a carter and between 1916 and 1918 the family moved to 37 Wellington Street.

In 1918 the disease which had remained latent in Joseph Arthur Upton for several years became active again and he died in Loughborough, aged 22, on 11th July 1918. He was buried in Loughborough Cemetery, Grave 45/171.

His widow Mabel was remarried at Holy Trinity Church, Loughborough on 16th August 1922 to William Henry Baguley.

 Joseph Arthur Upton

Has no memorial on his grave.

Lance Corporal 8428 John Lawrence Varley


2nd Bn, King's Own Scottish Borderers. 

Died Doeberitz Prisoner 12th April 1917, Aged 33.

Buried Berlin South Western Cemetery, Brandenburg, XX. B. 2.       


John Lawrence Varley was born in late 1884/early 1885 in Nottinghamshire. He was the son of John Varley and his wife Violetta Elizabeth (nee Atkin) who were married at St. Mary's Church, Arnold, Nottinghamshire, on 5th October 1882. John Lawrence's father was a framework knitter and in 1891 the Varley family was living at Nelson Street, Heanor, Derbyshire. By 1901 they had moved to 25 Moira Street, Loughborough. By 1911 Violetta Varley had died and John's father had moved back to Bond Street, Arnold, with three of his children. John Lawrence had one brother Walter and six sisters Edith, Mabel, Evelyn, Elsie, Ivy and May.

In 1901 John, aged 16 was working as a sawmill labourer in Loughborough. Not long after this he enlisted with the King's Own Scottish Borderers and joined their 1st Battalion. After returning from the 2nd Boer War in South Africa the battalion was sent to Belfast for a couple of years and then to Colchester in 1905. In 1906 the battalion was posted to Egypt until 1911 when they moved to Rhaniket, India, and one year later to Lucknow. By 1911 John had been promoted to Sergeant.

John left the Army, but as a Reservist he was called up when war broke out in 1914. At the time he was lodging with his friend, a Mr. Jones, at 8 Chestnut Street, Loughborough, and was employed at Mr Jacob Smith's wood mills.

Although John's service record has not survived it is known that in 1914 he joined the 2nd Battalion of the King's Own Scottish Borderers as Lance Corporal 8428. The battalion sailed from Dublin, where it was stationed at the time, to Le Havre and John entered France on 15th August 1914.

Throughout the war the 2nd Battalion was involved in various actions on the Western Front. During 1914 it took part in the battles of Mons, Le Cateau, Marne, Aisne, La Bassée and Messines, and 1st Ypres. In 1915 it was involved in the 2nd Battle of Ypres and the Capture of Hill 60 and in 1916 it fought at High Wood, Guillemont, Flers-Courcelette, Morval and Le Transloy.

John was taken as a Prisoner of War by the Germans at some point between 1914 and 1917 and sent to Döberitz prisoner of war camp at Brandenburg 8 km west of Berlin. He died there, aged 33, on 12th April 1917 and was buried at Berlin South Western Cemetery, Brandenburg, Grave XX. B 2. John is remembered on the memorial in the former St. Peter's Church building, Loughborough, as well as on the Carillon.

Rifleman 42462 Arthur John Vesty


8th Bn, West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Own) 

Formerly 38011 Leicestershire Regiment                                          

Killed in Action 23rd July 1918, Aged 22.

Buried Jonchery-Sur-vesle British Cemetery, Marne I. F. 27.       


Arthur John Vesty was born in Cropston, Leicestershire, in late 1895 and baptised at Quorn on 25th August 1897. He was the only son of John Vesty, a general labourer, and his wife Sophia (formerly Hughes, née Green) who were married on 13th July 1890 in the registration area of Barrow on Soar. Arthur had three sisters Ellen, Gertrude and Lizzie. Another sibling had died in infancy. Arthur also had a half-sister Minnie Hughes, a daughter from his mother's first marriage to Alfred Hughes. Between 1891 and 1894 the Vesty family lived in Belgrave, Leicester, but by the time Arthur was born they had moved to Cropston. Three years later they were living in Soar Side, Quorn. By 1911 they were in School Lane, Quorn, and Arthur, aged 15, was a warehouse hand.

Arthur and his sisters

In late 1915 or early 1916 Arthur married Lillian K. Collins, the daughter of a Loughborough iron works labourer, and the young couple set up home at 33 Judges Street, Loughborough. Arthur and Lillian's daughter Lilian Florence was born on 30th June 1916.

Arthur enlisted in Loughborough in the summer of 1916. He initially joined the Leicestershire Regiment as Private 38011 but was transferred to the 1/8th (Leeds Rifles) Battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Own) as Private 42462. Arthur's service papers have not survived and his precise dates of enlistment, transfer to the West Yorkshire Regiment, and when he was sent abroad are therefore unknown. The war diary of the 1/8th West Yorkshires, however, records that in July and August 1917 the battalion received seven substantial batches of reinforcements (totalling 724 men) and it is likely that Arthur was in one of these batches.

In July and for most of August 1917 the battalion was in the area of Nieuport and Bray Dunes, on coastal defences. This was followed by a period of training in camp at Fort de Dunes and then at Ghyvelde. Training continued at Ghyvelde until 23rd September and then at Noordreene until 27th September. On 28th September the battalion moved to Tatinghem to practice an attack before marching to Oxlaere on 1st October. Further range practice and physical training took place at Watou and between 5th and 7th October the battalion made final preparations for action at Vlamertinghe.

On 8th October the battalion moved to St. Jean and marched in single file along trench grids for twelve hours in heavy rain to the assembly position at Passchendaele. Moving up to this position was extremely difficult and the battalion's rear company only reached the assembly position five minutes before zero hour on 9th October when the Battle of Poelcappelle was due to start. In this battle 17 out of the battalion's 23 Officers became casualties and among the Ordinary Ranks there were 301 casualties.

The battalion was relieved on 10th October and moved back via Weiltje to Vlamertinghe. Two days later the men were taken by bus to Camp 3, Winnezeele, where they rested and underwent training until 27th October. Training continued at Steenvoorde until 11th November when the battalion moved up into the support position and then the front line. They remained in the front line until 20th November before moving to Walker Camp to provide working parties.

During December the battalion was in Divisional reserve at the Infantry Barracks, Ypres, and at Vancouver Camp, in Brigade reserve at Dragoon Camp, and in Brigade support at Garter Point. Between 23rd and 28th December the battalion returned to the front line trenches where work was hindered by frost, an enemy attack was repulsed, and they were on the receiving end of day and night enemy gas shelling. The men finally enjoyed their Christmas dinner on 30th December.

The war diary of the 1/8th Battalion for January 1918 has unfortunately been lost but records from the 146th Brigade to which the battalion belonged indicate that the battalion remained in the Ypres area for part of January before moving by train to Roclincourt, a village between Arras and Lens. Here the 2/8th (Leeds Rifles) Battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment was amalgamated with the 1/8th (Leeds Rifles) Battalion and the combined battalion was renamed as the 8th Battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment. The amalgamation was celebrated with a special concert party at the Pelican Theatre.

In early February, after reorganisation and inspections, the 8th Battalion cleaned and wired the trenches in the Oppy section under the supervision of the Royal Engineers. On 10th February the battalion entrained at Daylight Railhead for Maroeuil and continued by rail from Maroeuil to Monchy Breton. After eight days of training and lectures the battalion returned to Aubrey Camp at Roclincourt until 15th March for working parties, gas drill, kit inspections, and firing practice on assault courses.

From 16th-20th March the battalion was in support in the Willerval sector and their working parties were twice hit by enemy gas shells. Three days in reserve at Buerly Hill was followed by an order for the battalion to move via Agny and Ayette to take up a position east of Bucquoy.

As the Germans furthered their Spring Offensive and advanced to Achiet-le-Petit on 26th March the battalion moved to high ground east of Bucquoy but even here they suffered from intermittent enemy bombardment. On 29th March the battalion carried out a successful attack at Rossengal Wood. Between 16th March and the end of the month, however, the battalion had suffered 369 casualties.

On 31st March the battalion proceeded via Couin to an aerodrome and hangars at Marieux where they remained until 5th April. On 6th April they were taken by bus to Souastre and marched to a position in the line between Hannescamps and Fonquevillers. On the following day the battalion moved forward to a line running parallel to the Essarts-Gommecourt road. Here they consolidated their position and worked on establishing a strong defence scheme.

On 17th April the battalion moved up to the front line in the left sub-sector facing Ablainzevelle. Relieved on 24th April the men marched to Souastre, where they were given bacon sandwiches, and were then taken by bus from Souastre to Louvencourt. (Details of food are rarely mentioned in the war diaries, but clearly the provision of the bacon sandwiches was regarded as a highlight.)

The battalion remained in corps reserve at Louvencourt until 16th May. During this time they underwent training, including firing practice on a range, carried out tactical exercises, did some digging in the forward area, and participated in battalion sports. On 17th May the battalion returned by bus to Souastre and marched to the support line via the Willow Patch Track.

Two days later the enemy released mustard gas shells and one Officer and 34 Ordinary Ranks had to be sent to hospital. On 24th May a working party from the battalion was surprised by a German raiding party and one Officer and 14 Ordinary Ranks were taken prisoners of war. On 25th May the battalion went into reserve at Essarts and for the next eight days worked on the defences and communication trenches there. While doing so some of the men were caught in an enemy phosphene gas attack. From 2nd - 18th June the battalion was at the front amid intermittent enemy shelling and carrying out night patrols.

Relieved on the night of the 18th/19th June the battalion marched to huts at Valley Camp, Souastre, where 119 Ordinary Ranks from the disbanded 2/7th Battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment joined them. A week of reorganisation followed, together with firing practice, a boxing contest and repairing of shelters. From 25th June -14th July the battalion went into corps reserve at Terramesnil for parades, inspections, tactical exercises and recreational training. On 1st July a battalion hospital was opened to cope with the large number of influenza cases occurring, twelve men being admitted on one day.

Between 14th and 16th July the battalion moved to Doullens south, entrained for Arcis-sur-Aube and then travelled on foot and by bus to Teurs-sur-Marne. On 19th July, a very hot day, they marched to St. Imoges along heavily congested roads. Under orders to prepare to attack the battalion endured another six-hour march to the assembly area.

On 20th July, at the Bois de Pourcy, the battalion began an attack under a heavy barrage. Their objective was to capture the high ground marked by the road running north to north-east of Bligny. The attack initially went well but came to a halt under heavy enemy machine gun fire and the battalion was forced to withdraw.

As the battalion had incurred heavy casualties it was now reorganised into two companies instead of four. On 23rd July 1918, during the Battle of Tardenois, the two companies were ordered to attack at the Bois de Petit Champs and in the attack Arthur, aged 22, was killed in action.

Arthur was buried in Jonchery-sur-Vesle British Cemetery, Marne, Grave I. F. 27.

Second Lieutenant Kenneth Jesson Vick


Royal Flying Corps.

Previously Private 2021, 1/9th London Regiment (Queen Victoria's Rifles)        

Killed while Flying 5th July 1917, Aged 28.

Buried Beverley St. Mary's Church, Yorkshire, S. 22.       


Kenneth Jesson Vick was born at 133 Park Road, Loughborough in 1889, the son of the Reverend Charles William Vick and his wife Agnes Mabel Vick (née Davis) who were married in Stroud, Gloucestershire, in 1883. Kenneth's father was Minister of the Baptist Church in Wood Gate, Loughborough, from 1882-1893. His father then became Minister at Brondesbury Baptist Church, Kilburn, north London, and subsequently Minister of Baptist churches at Woodborough Road, Nottingham and of Winchmore Hill, near Enfield, Middlesex. They later moved to South Benfleet, Essex.

Kenneth had two brothers Charles and Donald, and two sisters Mabel and Gladys. From the mid-1890s to early 1900s the Vick family lived at 2 Dyne Road, Brondesbury, but by 1911 had moved to 50 Fordwych Road, Cricklewood. In 1911 Kenneth worked as a clerk in a tourist office.

Kenneth enlisted in August 1914. He joined the 1/9th London Regiment (Queen Victoria's Rifles) as Private 2021. He was sent to Bullswater, Surrey, and then in September to Crowborough, Sussex. He proceeded to France on 4th November 1914. The battalion fought with the Army's 5th Division throughout 1915, at Hill 60 (17th April-7th May), the 2nd Second Battle of Ypres (22nd April-25th May) and St Julien (24th April-4th May). In February 1916 the 56th Division was formed in France and the 9th Battalion were allocated to the 169th Brigade. It fought with this division on the Somme in 1916 and in the Arras Offensive of 1917.

Between 1915 and 1917 Kenneth learnt to fly in France. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) on 6th June 1917 and was sent to Seaton Carew, Yorkshire, a small seaside resort between Hartlepool and the mouth of the River Tees which had an airstrip to the south of the town. A detachment of No. 36 Home Defence Squadron of the RFC Cramlington, Northumberland, was based there, charged with the defence of the North East of England and the Yorkshire coast.

On 5th July 1917 Kenneth was flying a BE2e (A1321) which broke up in flight and crashed on 5th July 1917. Kenneth, aged 28, was killed. He was buried at St. Mary's Church, Beverley, Yorkshire, Grave S. 22.

Kenneth's father was not allowed to attend the military enquiry into the accident.

Kenneth is remembered (incorrectly as H.J.Vick) on a plaque at All Saints Church, Bishop Burton, Yorkshire. His name appears on another memorial that probably originally hung in the Brondesbury Baptist Church (now demolished). This latter memorial was discovered in a rather sad state in the back garden of a nearby Highgate film producer.

Kenneth's brother Donald also joined the London Rifles but as a Lieutenant. His brother Charles joined the Royal Army Medical Corps as a Private. Both survived the war, although one was wounded twice.

Plaque in All Saints Church, Bishop Burton