Thomas, Griffith

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Griffith Thomas

12447, Private, 9th Cheshire Regiment
Killed in action, 20 September 1917, aged 37
No known grave (Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium)

CWGC registered (Son of William Thomas, of Curzon Rd, Craig-y-don, Llandudno; husband of the late Elizabeth Thomas, of 22, Myrtle St, Birkenhead)

Not on Llanudno Roll of Honour (see note below)

Griffith Thomas, the son of William Thomas, a joiner, and his wife Winifred (née Owen) was born at Penygroes on 6 March 1880. In the 1891 Census of Wales, Griffith (11) was recorded as living with his mother and two brothers, Thomas J (9) and William (2) at “Wesley Terrace”, Llanllyfni. Ten years later, Griffith (21) was living with his father and stepmother, Mary Elizabeth Thomas, at “Orme View”, Victoria Street, Llandudno; Griffith was described as a bricklayer. On 18 April 1903, Griffith Thomas married Elizabeth Mealor at Christ Church, Aughton, Lancashire; he gave his address as Davyhulme and his age as 25 (he was actually 23). William Thomas was born at Ormskirk on 24 January 1904; Winifred Thomas was born at Llandudno on 1 February 1907; and Ernest Thomas was born at Ashton under Lyne on 16 October 1908. The Census of 1911 records Elizabeth and the three children as borders at 26 Myrtle Street, Birkenhead. At the same time, Griffith Thomas is recorded as residing with his father and stepmother at “Gladys House”, Curzon Road, Craig-y-don; he was described as a bricklayer working for a light railway company.

Griffith Thomas volunteered to join the army at Birkenhead in September 1914. On his attestation papers, he gave his place of birth as Llandudno (which was incorrect) and his trade as a bricklayer. His wife’s address was given as 22 Myrtle Street, Birkenhead. Griffith joined the 9th (Service) Battalion of the Cheshire Regiment. This regiment had formed in September 1914 as part of K2, Kitchener’s second new army. The battalion moved to Salisbury Plain and by December 1914 was in billets at Basingstoke. Meanwhile, another daughter, Elizabeth, had been born in Birkenhead on 23 November 1914. On 27 December 1914, Griffith went absent without leave and was apprehended at Birkenhead four days later by PC Alfred George Jones who received a reward of 10 shillings. Sadly, Elizabeth (daughter) died on 23 May 1915 of gastroenteritis.

The 9th Cheshires disembarked in France on 20 July 1915. On 20 September 1917, the battalion took part in the Battle of the Menin Road Ridge – a phase of the Third Battle of Ypres. Griffith Thomas had been assigned to the battalion’s trench mortar battery. One entry in his army record says that he was killed in action or died of wounds on or shortly after 20 September 1917 but later entries only mention him being killed in action. One account says that he was shot by an enemy sniper and buried in a wood near the firing line though he is recorded as having no known grave.

Elizabeth Thomas died at Birkenhead in 1924.

Known memorials:

  • Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium
  • Llandudno War Memorial
  • Memorial Chapel, Holy Trinity Church, Llandudno


Griffith Thomas is not remembered on the Llandudno Roll of Honour. Though the names on the Llandudno memorials are generally the same, the Roll of Honour was the first to be completed and it is possible that Griffith’s name was not included but added to the list before the other memorials were completed.

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