THE NORTH SKELTON
William Dyson Wallis and Tom Penrose Wallis
in the dress uniform of the 10th Hussars.
|The following information was sent by Michael Gilday of
Coventry, who is the Great Nephew of William Dyson Wallis and
"Pte W D Wallis, 10th Hussars." is the last name on the North
Skelton War Memorial and little has hitherto been known about him
William was born in 1884 in Howden in the East Riding of Yorkshire and
his brother Tom in 1887.
The 1901 census shows the Wallis family living at Kingston upon Hull
and at this time William was a dock labourer.
In this same year the mother died in childbirth, when the sender of
this email's Grandmother, Margaret May was born.
The father, James Arthur Wallis, brought the family to the Skelton
area. There is a record of them at 41 Richard St,
North Skelton in 1914.
He was a bricklayer and obtained work in the ironstone mines.
About 1905 the father was involved in a mining accident. It is thought
that this caused the family to break up, with only the younger children
staying at home and the two brothers William and Tom joining the 10th
[Prince of Wales's
Own Royal] Hussars.
The Army's main task at that time was to police the vast British Empire
and in 1913 the Wallis brothers were in Potchefstroom, South Africa as
the two photographs below show.
When Germany invaded Belgium in August 1914 and Britain declared War
all available units were recalled to England.
The 10th Hussars joined the 6th Cavalry Brigade in the the 3rd Cavalry
Division at Ludgershall, near Salisbury, Wilts.
About this time Will came home, as had broken his arm in a riding
accident. It was the only time his sister remembered
On the 8th October they landed at Ostende.
The 3rd Cavalry Division was then involved in most of the action of the
First Battle of Ypres.
William Dyson Wallis in the centre with parrot.
Tom Wallis, bottom row, far right.
William Dyson Wallis.
Poperinghe Old Military Cemetery.
The regulars of the British Army, although heavily outnumbered and
limited to the amount of ammunition they could use, prevented the
Germans from taking the Channel ports.
Had this happened the War would have probably been lost.
The Kaiser called them the "contemptible little Army".
By the end of the year half of the 160,000 had been lost, but a wedge
had been driven into the German line, the Ypres Salient.
The Cavalry, the "donkey wallopers" as
|they were known, were of little use on horseback against
lines of trenches and
barbed wire. They fought for the most part as Infantry.
In February 1915 William Wallis was shot by a sniper while fixing a
fencing post and he died on the 11th of that month.
He is buried at Poperinghe Old Military Cemetery, some way to the West
It is believed his brother Tom lost his left arm in the same year.
William Wallis's No 1 dress uniform of the Hussars, shown in the first
photograph above, has ended up in a museum in Halifax. The connection
with the West Riding town and how this came about is not presently