Davies' Family History
Joseph Thomas Davies 1889 - 1971
|Tom married Jenny (Janet) Riding in 1914 and their son Wilfred was born in 1915. At that time, Tom's occupation was listed Table Baize Works labourer with White Cross Mills owned by Storey Bros. iii. When World War 1 broke out Tom joined the 5th Battalion King's Own Royal Lancaster (Territorial) # 6380052 DVR where he gained an Efficiency medal.|
|Tom is sitting in the front row, second from the left.|
Tom served mainly with the British Artillery during World War 1 as a driver or looking after the horses that pulled the large guns. His service was with the 10th Battery, Royal Field Artillery; # 662 DVR and the Royal Artillery #662DVR. He was stationed in Belgium and France and was slightly gassed whilst in the trenches. He remained in France after the armistice was declared. It wasn't until after February of 1919 that the army demobilised any soldiers as they were still on standby in case the armistice agreement broke down. The men were used to dismantle arms dumps, generally clearing up rubbish and taking up the trade education programs to give them skills to look for a job when they eventually got home. Virtually every unit from the smallest to the largest had a football team, a tug-o-war team and a cross-country team. Large units at the battalion level also had cricket, rugby and many other teams. There were lots of individual competitions ranging from chess to boxing. Men were selected or volunteered and were given time off to train and play. iv
|Tom joined the 55th Division Football Division
Troops League, which won the Premiership title in 1918-1919. Even when
the war was still on, the army tried to keep up moral by organising battalion
sports days with Jacket & Cap Race, Three-legged Race, Lifesaving
and running races. There were also company/battalion/regiment football
matches and Divisional Horse Shows with prizes for the Best Pack Animal,
Single Horse Turnout and Best Heavy Draught Horse. They were also visits
by the Divisional Band who played a select programme of popular music.
These competitions were fiercely competitive especially between regiments
and often warranted mentions in the War Diaries. The following medal shows
the regard with which these activities were held by those in command.
Tom's medal on the right states "55th Divison Football- France- 1918- 1919- Winners- Div. Troops League"
|Jenny died from tuberculosis later that year.
Tommy was given compassionate leave from France to go back home for a
When Tom was finally demobbed from the army, he returned to his parents' home in Greaves Road, Scotforth. His parents, John and Sarah Davies had been minding the baby Wilfred.
|The photo on the left shows Tom in the front row, far right with the Scotforth Football Club in the 1919-1920 season. The medal above is when they won the premiership in the 1920-1921 season.|
After the birth of a daughter Margery, they decided to emigrate to Australia because the work opportunities seemed better. They were nominated by Lilian's brother, Jack and left England from Tilbury Docks in London on 18th October 1923 on the SS Borda (P & O Line) via the Cape of Good Hope, Fremantle then Port Adelaide in Australia. Baby Margery was very sick on the voyage. Tommy's passport describes him as 5 feet 5 inches with grey eyes.
The family settled in Murray Bridge, South Australia, because other family members had preceded them. They lived for a few weeks with Lilian's brother Jack and his wife Maggie before moving into a three roomed galvanised iron house. Jack gave Tommy work servicing his hire boats but then Tommy worked for the railways as a fettler laying the railway sleepers. He was away for a fortnight at a time.
|Above; Tom and Lil in about 1938.I n 1946, they travelled back to South Australia to visit the relatives that they'd left behind.|
Lil died in March 1953. Their daughter Margery and her husband Fred Brown and family had come to live at 38 John Street to care for Lil some time before then stayed on to look after Tom.
i. Birth Certificate
ii. 1891 Census of Lancaster
iv. John M Chapman - [email protected] military expert
v. Ian Edwards- [email protected] military expert
vi. article from local newspaper dated 1983 following the demolition of the Nairn factory
vii. Oral- Margery Brown
viii Death Certificate