Quorn WW1 Roll of Honour - Sydney Francis Whysall
Died 26th March 1918, aged 32
Gailly, the Somme, France
The Whysall family came from Derbyshire, although Sydney (sometimes spelt Sidney), was born in Bramcote near Nottingham in 1886. He was the second youngest of at least ten children of Joseph and Emma Whysall. Sydney’s father died in 1897 when Sydney was only 11 years old, so life must have been hard for the family, especially his mother.
It is likely that due to these circumstances, young Sydney became very close to his eldest sister Annie. She was 20 when he was born and, as was common at the time, would have taken a major role in bringing him up. Annie married Joseph Storer in 1900 and shortly afterwards the couple moved to Quorn. Their daughter Alice was baptised in Quorn Church in March 1902 and their address is recorded as the White Hart pub on High Street, where Joseph was the landlord. This is the first time the family seem to have been connected with Quorn.
In 1901 Sydney was living with his widowed mother Emma in Nottingham, but he cannot be traced in 1911, even though his mother was living in Winchester, with Ada, one of Sydney’s other sisters.
After war broke out, Sydney joined the 19th Royal Hussars (Queen Alexandra's Own). Unfortunately his attestation papers were part of the 60% of WW1 soldiers’ records which were destroyed by a bombing raid in WW2. However, we do know that he was not involved in active service in 1914 or 1915 as he did not qualify for the 1914-15 Star.
He enlisted at Retford in Nottinghamshire, despite records indicating that he lived in Chelsea. In November 1917 Sydney completed one of the Army’s ‘informal’ will forms in the back of his Army paybook, leaving everything to his sister Annie, whose address he gave as a different pub in Quorn, the White Horse, which is on Quorn Cross.
Sydney died of wounds in March 1918 at Gailly, East of Corbie on the Somme, just four months after making his will, and is buried in Dernancourt Communal Cemetery Extension in France. Annie and her husband Joseph continued to run the White Horse until around 1930, when they moved to Ratcliffe on the Wreake. However she must have considered Quorn to be her home, as when she died in 1938, she was buried in Quorn Churchyard.
As well as Sydney’s name being on the war memorial in Quorn, it is also included on the memorial at St Swithun’s Church, East Retford in Nottinghamshire.
1) Sydney’s medal record.
2) His will written in the back of his Army paybook.