Walter Edmund Wetton (Killer) (1892–1963)


Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment) 2260 6th Batallion
Labour Corps 654344  

Photos courtesy Sheila Wetton

Wlater Wetton

Walter in later life

On the original Roll of Honour he is recorded as Walker Wetton. This name cannot be found in the census, the Birth, Marriage and Death indices nor in the army records.

Making the assumption that it should be Walter Wetton, we know that Walter was born in Crich about 1893 and was brought up by his uncle and aunt Samuel and Martha Killer at Wirksworth. He enlisted in August 1914 and was discharged in April 1919 with the Silver War Badge, on account of wounds received.

Walter served with the Staveley Works unit of the St John Ambulance Brigade for many years.
The photograph below was taken at Staveley Works Sports Ground on 18 September 1955. He was introduced to Countess Mountbatten, who was inspecting the units of North Derbyshire. The Countess had been appointed Superintendent-in-Chief of the St John Ambulance Brigade in 1942. Walter is shown wearing the rank insignia of corporal.

Walter Wetton in St John's Ambulance Brigade

Among his medals is the Service Medal of the Order of St John, which was usually awarded for long service of around fifteen years.
The two bars on the ribbon indicate additional periods of service.

Walter Wetton and his wife

Walter Wetton pictured with his wife, Edith (née Moore), circa 1950s.
They lived at Edith's native Hollingwood throughout their married life, following their marriage in 1916.

Medal Roll Index card
He had two medal cards, one under Walter E Killer and the other under Walter E Wetton. He was awarded the Victory, British War and 15 Star medals also award the Silver War Badge
Enlisted 15/08/14; discharged 10/04/19 under Para 392 (xvi) KR (no longer physically fit)
Entered France 28/02/15

Silver War Badge
654334 Cpl Wetton Walter E; Labour Corp, B2753303; enlisted 15/8/14 discharged 10/4/19; wounds

Newspaper report

Derbyshire Courier, 11 September 1915
Lance Cpl W. Wetton (Killer) 6th Sherwoods of Crich and Middleton, writing to his parents Crich informs them that he is in hospital somewhere in France, the result of being wounded by shrapnel. A shell exploded near their lines and several pieces hit him about the head and neck. Luckily the largest piece struck one of the buttons of his uniform causing it to glance off, thereby saving him from receiving a severe wound. After being injured he walked from the firing line for a couple of miles to receive surgical aid. Lance Cpl Wetton states that he had done exactly six months fighting when he was wounded, and he hopes to be in the fighting line again very soon “to have another go at the Germans.”


1901: Bole Hill Wirksworth

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Martha Killer Wife 50   Cromford
Walter Wetton nephew 8   Crich

RG13 piece 3234 folio 74 page 19

1911: Steeple Grange, Wirksworth

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Samuel Killer Head 61 Joiner builder Middleton
Martha Killer wife 61   Cromford & Matlock
Walter Wetton adopted son 18 Butcher Crich

RG14PN21003 RG78PN1253 RD436 SD6 ED1 SN260

1939 Register: 35 Hollingwood Crescent, Stavely
Walter E Wetton b. 4 July 1892; coke oven worker. heavy worker
Edith Wetton b.12 September 1884
Stanley Wetton b.17 April 1920; iron pipe tester, heavy work
Alan Wetton b.8 August 1923; clerk Buying Dept, Coal Coke and Chemical Co
Frank Wetton b. 10 June 1918; L/Bdr A Battery, F squadron 2/7th S/L Royal Artillery, on leave