William Vanes was the son of Mr and Mrs William Vanes of 20 Hill Street, Kates Hill, Dudley. He enlisted the Artillery and fought with the Royal Field Artillery. He was transferred to the 14th Machine Gun Company which joined the 32nd Division in February 1917. They followed up the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line and further training in May 1917 was followed by three weeks leave. He soon returned to front line duties but it was not until the German Spring offensive of March 1918 that they faced attack. From the 21st they were forced to withdraw and retreated across the Somme. In the sourse of the retreat Private William Vanes was seriously wounded. He was taken to a Casualty Clearing Station a few miles from Amiens where he died of wounds on the 3rd April. He was 22 years of age and is buried at Namps-au-Val Cemetery (I K 15) and commemorated on the Dudley and St. Johns, Kates Hill, Memorials.
Town Hall, Priory Street, Dudley
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