Noel Thomas HIGTON (1888–1952)


Army Service Corps T4/172768  

Photo courtesy Brenda Street

Noel Higton in WW1

Thomas Noel Higton was not on the original Roll of Honour, his name came to light during research into Crich men who served. We know he lived at Plaistow Green, Crich during 1918 and he was living in Crich during the 1930s. In 1922 he married Edith Florence Mary JULIAN and he died on 27 Aug 1952 aged 64.

He was baptised at Wirksworth 11 March 1889, mother Julia Higton.

Nick Higton, who has a one-name study of the HIGTON family at, added the following information on Noel:
In the 1901 and 1911 censuses he was recorded as WHEELDON.  What makes this slightly odd is that his mother, Julia, had died in 1896, and her daughter, Maud WHEELDON was then living with her grandmother, Ann Higton, in 1901 Census.  Ann died in 1902 so, in the 1911 census, Maud was living with her aunt, Phillis HIGTON.

So, if Julia's legitimate child, Maud, was placed with relatives in Alderwasley after Julia's death, why not her illegitimate child, Thomas Noel?
It appears that Thomas Noel temporarily took his step-father's name, as he is in the 1901 census as Noel WHEELDON, living (or perhaps just visiting) in Manchester with his aunt, Mary ORME (Julia's sister) and her policeman husband, Daniel.

In the 1911 census, still as Noel WHEELDON, he is back in Crich and with his step-father. Perhaps he had to revert his birth surname when he joined up?

He appears on a record of the repatriation of wounded/ill soldiers.  The stamp on the form is for the Royal Garrison Artillery, Dover, it states that he was suffering from N.A.D, and had been discharged from the No 1 South African General Hospital, Abbeville on 07 Jan 1918. There were three army hospitals in Abbeville at this time, and there is more detail here:

His unit is given as the "ASC. MT. 76 Co". This is Army Service Corps, Mechanical Transport, and 76 Co was "Pre-war. Ammunition Park for 3rd Cavalry Division. Later, became 7 GHQ Reserve MT Company".  However, the "T4" in front of his Service Number signifies either that he was enlisted into the fourth New Army, or that he was one of the men affected by the compulsory transfer in 1916 of men who were serving in ASC units of the Territorial Force on to regular army terms.  See

It is possible that he was in the Territorials before the war, in the part of the ASC supporting the cavalry. After he was called up, he was placed in the Mechanical Transport section of the ASC.

Service Record
[just a single sheet remains]
172768; Pte Higton N T; ASC; MT 76-Co; N.A.D.; Dis.ex 1 Sth.Afric.Gen.H. Abbeville; 7th Jan '18

1918 Crich voters
Noel Thomas Higton, Plaistow Green absent on military service.

Medal Roll Index Card
Higton Noel T, awarded the Victory and British War medals.


1891 Oak Hill, Wigwell, Alderwasley

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Phineas Higton Head 65 Gardener Alderwasley
Ann Higton wife 65   Alderwasley
Julia Higton daughter 28   Alderwasley
Thomas N Higton grandson 2   Alderwasley

RG12 piece 2750 folio 95 page 7

1901 17, New York Street; South Manchester

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Daniel Orme Boarder 49 Policeman Styal, Cheshire
Mary Orme wife 50   Alderwasley
Noel Wheeldon nephew 28   Alderwasley

RG13 piece 3895 folio 123 page 27

1911 Moorwood Moor, Crich

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Samuel Wheeldon Head (widower) 56 Colliery labourer Moorwood Moor
Noel Wheeldon son 22 General Labourer Wirksworth

RG14PN20982 RG78PN1251 RD436 SD4 ED11 SN236

1939 Register: Cliff House, Crich
Noel T Higton b.16 December 1888; spar miner, heavy work
Florence (Edith FM) b.30 December 1899
Joyce (E) Newborough (Higton) b.14 July 1922; tape sorter
Evelyn Cook (Parkin, Higton) b.18 July 1935; school
Samuel (Henry) Fantom b.1 May 1905; gannister getter, heavy work
three closed records