Boyce, Samuel Christopher

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Samuel Christopher Boyce

350508, Private, Labour Corps
Formerly: 315503, 23rd Royal Welsh Fusiliers (Territorial Force)
Died of illness after discharge, 9 October 1919, aged 29
Buried at the Great Orme’s Head Cemetery

CWGC registered (no family details)

Samuel Christopher Boyce, the son of William and Annie C Boyce (née Pritchard), was born in Llandudno on 7 May 1890. Annie Pritchard was the sister of George William Pritchard, father of John Edward Pritchard (qv). In the following year, the family lived at 9 St. George’s Place, Back Madoc Street, Llandudno; William Boyce was employed as a coach trimmer. From June 1895, Samuel attended St. George’s National School; the school register gives the family’s address as Prospect Terrace though a register two years later gives the address as “Wyddfryd”. The Census of Wales for 1901 confirms the address as 1 Wyddfryd Cottages; William was now self-employed as a boatman and Samuel and his sister Estella were at school. William also had a younger sister Mary. William left school on 5 May 1904, two days before his 14th birthday. In 1911, William had another sister Alice and he worked as a bottle washer at a bottling store.

Samuel Boyce enlisted on 12 October 1914, possibly into a reserve battalion of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, Territorial Force. His first known regimental number was 315503 in the 23rd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers. This number was issued in 1917 and would have replaced an earlier number. The 23rd RWF originally formed in June 1915 as the 47th Provisional Battalion, Territorial Force with home service personnel of various Territorial Force battalions. It was re-designated as the 23rd RWF on 1 January 1917 at Mundesley, Norfolk.

Samuel Boyce married May Hewitt on 26 August 1917 in the County of Norfolk. For a reason and at a time unknown, Samuel transferred to the Labour Corps. His new number was 350508. In which company or capacity Samuel served in the Labour Corps is also unknown. He was discharged on 18 April 1919.

Samuel Christopher Boyce died of pulmonary tuberculosis at his home in Llandudno on 9 October 1919 and was buried at the Great Orme’s Head Cemetery. Because the Labour Corps was regarded in an unheroic light, soldiers who were killed or died whilst serving in the Corps or having been discharged from it, were officially commemorated as members of their previous regiments, if they had had one.

May Boyce married Ernest Willer in 1923. She died in 1974.

Known memorials:

  • Llandudno Roll of Honour
  • Llandudno War Memorial
  • Memorial Chapel, Holy Trinity Church, Llandudno

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