Harold Oswald Widlof


About Harold Oswald

  • Name
    Harold Oswald
  • Initials
  • Surname
  • Date of Birth
    8 August 1894
  • Birth town
    St Pancras, London
  • Resided town
  • Commemorated
  • Nationality
  • Place of death
  • Date of death
  • Married
  • Occupation
    Tailoring, Buyer

Service Information

  • Army

  • Service Number
  • Rank
  • Regiment
    Liverpool Regiment


Harold Oswald Widlof was born in 1894, to parents Richard Adolf Widlof and Rose Widlof (nee Haywood).  His father Richard was born in Berlin but took British nationality in 1913.  The family initially settled at St Pancras, London but relocated to Fairfield, Liverpool and were registered there on the 1911 Census.

Harold enlisted with the Liverpool Regiment in 1914, but by June 1915 had transferred to the 43rd Provisional Battalion, formed mainly of men not quite ‘fit’ for front line duty.  This unit became the 25th (Reserve) Liverpool Battalion.  In September  1915, he transferred to the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. The regiment moved to France  on 4 December 1915.  In the early months of 1917, Harold was hospitalised a couple of times at Etaples and Rouen with right ankle problems; possibly the reason for his medical status.

The Unit War Diary shows that after 11 days at Mont Vidagne Training Camp the battalion moved into the trenches on 1 July.  The entry for 2 July records a quiet day in the trenches at Vandamme Farm (near Wytschaete) but it notes one other rank as wounded.  Later medical reports reveal that as a consequence of a nearby shellburst, Private Widlof was buried waist deep in soil resulting in a partial dislocation and ruptured ligaments to his already weak right ankle.  Treated initially for just a sprained ankle, it was nearly two weeks later that he left Boulogne for the UK and spent considerable time in hospitals before being granted a medical discharge a year after the incident.

It appears that in 1926 Harold joined a trade union and was a member of the Amalgamation Society of Woodworkers.  In 1927, he married Ester Davies and they had two sons, Richard (1928) and William (1931).  In 1939, Harold was living at 14 Pensarn Road, Liverpool as a maintenance joiner.  His wife and son William had been evacuated to Tower Buildings, Prestatyn, Flintshire, where Esther was an evacuation help and William a school evacuee.

Harold died in Liverpool in 1953, aged 58.

Please get in touch if you can tell us more about Harold and his family.



Campaign Medals

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