William Hay attended Cradley C of E School and was married to Harriet, who later lived at 44 Waggon Street, Old Hill. He was a pre-war regular soldier and was probably called up from the Reserve on the outbreak of war. He joined the 3rd Battalion in the British Expeditionary Force and reached France by the time of the battle of Mons. He then took part in the Retreat from Mons and the Battle of the Aisne which halted the German attempt at quick victory. The BEF then had to deal with the next German advance in Artois. After the battle of La Bassée the city of Lille was lost but the German advance could go no further. Private William Hay was killed in action on the 15th October and is buried in Beuvry Cemetery (III C 3) near Béthune. He was 34 years of age and is commemorated on the Halesowen and Cradley School Memorials.
Town Hall, Priory Street, Dudley
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