Lance Corporal Gerald Wilkinson
Killed in Action. 1/7/1916, Aged 31.
Private Reginald Wilkinson
Born. Heck, Near Hensall, Goole.
Killed in Action. 1/7/1916, Aged 24.
Gerald was the third of five sons born to Frederick and Elizabeth Carr Wilkinson of Ulleskelf ,York’s, where is father was the Railway Station Master.
By 1901 Gerald was working at Ulleskelf Station as a railway clerk. at time of enlistment he was working at cross gates railway station Leeds as a goods clerk. He had elder brothers Harry, John Earle and younger brothers Reginald and Wilfred.
Reginald at time of enlistment was lodging with and working for a local Farmer as a chauffer and corn merchant.
Gerald enlisted on 3/9/1914 ,Reginald enlisted on 6/9/1914, he had to travel to Leeds from his home in York whereas Gerald was working and lodging in Leeds at the time, both brothers were to serve as machine gunners in 6 platoon B company at Colsterdale, Suez and France.
Gerald and Reginald were both Killed in Action on the first day of the Somme.
Both local newspapers in York and Leeds reported their deaths.
The Yorkshire Herald of late July 1916 reported :
"Mr and Mrs F. Wilkinson of Ulleskelf, have suffered a heavy bereavement, one of their sons Lance-Corporal Gerald Wilkinson, having been killed in action on July 1st, whilst another, Private Reginald Wilkinson, was wounded on the same day, and has since been reported as missing.
Their comrades, in letters of sympathy to the parents, state that both were splendid soldiers, and fought with great bravery.
Mr Wilkinson who is a much respected stationmaster at Ulleskelf, is a native of York, and the two sons referred to are on the city’s Roll of Freedom.
Lance-Corporal Gerald Wilkinson, who was 30 years of age, was the third son of Mr and Mrs Wilkinson. He was educated at Ulleskelf School, and had been employed as a booking office clerk on the North Eastern Railways at Leeds.
In September 1914 he enlisted in one of the Pals Battalions of the West Yorkshire Regiment, and went on foreign service, when his unit was ordered to Egypt, to be drafted later to the Western Front. private Reginald Wilkinson, wounded and missing, was 27 years of age, and the fourth son.
He was educated at Priory Street, York. Previous to joining the same battalion as his brother Gerald, he was in the employment of the North Eastern Railway Company as a goods clerk at Cross Gates Station near Leeds.
Mr Wilkinson’s second son, Private J. Earle. Wilkinson, who was educated at Ulleskelf School and his fifth and youngest son Private Wilfred Wilkinson, an old boy of Priory Street School, York, are in training in England."
Both brothers have no known grave but are commemorated next to each other on the Thiepval Memorial, France. They are also listed on Kirkby Wharfe War memorial.