Lance Corporal William Andrew Bingham


William Andrew Bingham was born on 29 April 1895 at 7 Windsor Terrace, Londonderry, the first of five children of hardware assistant Samuel John Bingham and his wife Jennie (Jane) Crothers Bingham (née Smyth). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at 7 College Terrace, Londonderry, with his parents and siblings, and working as a hardware apprentice for the firm John Cook & Co. of Waterloo Place.

Bingham enlisted in the North Irish Horse at Hawkins Street, Londonderry, on 18 November 1915, reporting for duty at Antrim six days later. He was issued regimental number 1963 (later Corps of Hussars No.71647). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve camp before embarking for France on 8 December 1916. There he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment, which was serving as corps cavalry to VII Corps. He served with that regiment as a 1st Class Signaller.

At the end of August 1917 Bingham fell ill with appendicitis. Initially treated at the 2nd General Hospital at Camiers, on 11 September he was evacuated to England, where he was admitted to the 2nd Western General Hospital at Manchester. There he was operated on, remaining in hospital until discharged on 17 November.

Bingham was, however, no longer fit for front-line service, and on 2 May 1918 was transferred to the Military Foot Police (No. P/15221) with the rank of lance corporal. He remained with that regiment on home service until 28 February 1919, when he was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve. He was granted a pension due to stiffness down the right side of his abdomen resulting from the operation to remove his appendix, his level of disability assessed at 20 per cent.

Note: When Bingham was detached from the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment in September 1917, his commanding officer signed a reference on his military character, reporting that he was strictly sober, reliable and intelligent, an "honest hardworking man [who] has given entire satisfaction".