Private William Peplow (9805)

'B' Coy, 9th Bn, The Worcestershire Regiment, 39th Brigade, 13th Division, Mespotamian E.F.

Malvern Commemoration: Malvern Library,

Burial/Commemoration: Deolali Government Cemetery, India

Nature of Death: Died of enteric fever at 34th General Hospital, Deolali, India 1/10/1916

Age: 30

Next of Kin: Son of the late William and Annie Peplow of Willenhall, Staffordshire

Previous Employment: Army reservist, employed at Lloyds Bank, Malvern

Cap badge of the Worcestershire Regiment

Early years

William Peplow was born in Willenhall, Staffordshire in 1887, the son of William Peplow, a coal miner and his wife, Ann.  His looks to have been a difficult upbringing, it’s not clear where William’s father was after the 1881 Census.  A William Peplow was convicted of the theft of tools from the New Cross Colliery, near Heath Town in May 1882, having already been in and out of gaol for the previous ten years.  Whether or not this was his father, William’s mother died in in 1899, when William junior was 12.  The 1901 Census finds him still in Willenhall, but living with an uncle and aunt.

Regular army service

In the summer of 1908, William Peplow joined the Worcestershire Regiment as a regular soldier and is likely to have served for four years with the Colours before being placed on the Army Reserve.  Perhaps fancying a change of air, he moved to Malvern.

William was in the employ of Charles Andree Wylde, the manager of the Great Malvern branch of Lloyds bank as an indoor servant for some years and then worked at Lloyds Bank itself in the town.  He was recalled to the Colours in October 1914 and was posted to the 3rd Battalion in France.  

Overseas service

William landed in France on 2nd February 1915 and from From March 1915, Peplow was in the trenches and was twice wounded.  The second wound was a gunshot wound to the right leg, received in December 1915.

When he was fit enough he was posted to the 9th Battalion, then serving in Mesopotamia.  He contracted typhoid fever (known as enteric fever at the time) and was evacuated to India to recover. He was treated at 34th (Welsh) General Hospital at Deolali, near Dehili. Sadly he succumbed to this nasty disease on 1st October 1916.  He was buried at Deolali Government Cemetery

 The Malvern News stated: “This is the third death among the men who enlisted from Lloyds Bank House, Malvern.”  This was the home of Charles Wylde, and included his son, Charles.


William was survived by his three married sisters – Olive Richards, Mary Ann Ferguson and Gertrude Banks and his brother John Peplow.

Today William Peplow is commemorated on the Kirkee Memorial, which serves as a memorial for more than 1800 servicemen who died in India during the First World War, who are buried in civil and cantonment cemeteries in India and Pakistan where their graves can no longer be properly maintained. 

Malvern News 4/11/16
Birmingham Daily Post 23/5/1882
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
1881 Census
1891 Census
Army Registers of Soldiers' Effects, 1901-1929
Military Hospitals Admissions and Discharge Registers, 1914-1918

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