“If you think, have a kindly thought, If you speak, speak generously, Of those who as heroes fought And died to keep you free”
Set up by the Black Country Society. Our aim is to highlight local men who died in the Great War and how they have been commemorated on war memorials. Its scope covers the whole of the present Dudley Municipal Borough and therefore includes the places which have come within its bounds since 1914.
There are over fifty memorials and the number of names exceeds three thousand. Research on the names has been extensive but inevitably errors and omissions occur. We would like to hear about them concentrated on life and work before 1914, involvement in military campaigns and where each man is buried or commemorated.
Thomas Bird was the son of Benjamin and Sarah Bird of Netherton and was married to Edith Bird of 2 St. John Street, Netherton. He volunteered for the Worcesters and went to the 3rd Battalion which had been on the Western Front since August 1914. They had been involved in front line fighting for most of the time and in June 1916 were sent from Ploegsteert Wood to the Somme. After the huge losses on 1st July, the first day of the Battle of the Somme, they were ordered forward to the front line and arrived at Aveluy Wood at 2 a.m. on the 3rd to face the Leipzig Salient protecting Thiepval. They suffered a heavy enemy bombardment and on the 6th assaulted the maze of trenches that made up the German defences. There were huge losses and among the casualties was Private Thomas Bird. He was seriously wounded and sent to the military hospital at Rouen where he died on the 16th July. Private Thomas Bird is buried in Boulogne Eastern Cemetery (VIII D 123) and commemorated on the Dudley Memorial.Search our Biographies