Bruce Lionel Siddons 1 September 1918

Bruce Lionel Siddons was the eldest son of JM Siddons of Oundle, born in April 1886 at Silver Birch on Milton Road. He was a day boy at Oundle School from 1898-1902. 

At the age of 26, he went to Australia in the Sydney area, where he trained as an engineer. Described later as “tall, dark and thin”, he came back to England in February 1915 with the second detachment of Australian Imperial Forces, having enlisted in the infantry. He could have taken a commission with an English regiment but decided to stay with the Australians as a sergeant. He was wounded in Gallipoli in June 1915, when he was hit by a bullet in his left forearm. He was sent to Cairo where the bullet and several fragments were removed and then spent the rest of the year there recovering from his injuries. 

In the summer of 1916, he and his men were sent to Marseille and made their way to the Somme battlefield. In July 1918, he was back in England on a musketry course. He re-joined his unit on the Somme two days before its attack on the small town of Peronne. He was killed on 1st September 1918, in the attack on the town, when a shell burst in front of his face, killing him instantly. 

His commanding office said that this action covered the brigade with glory but that Siddons could ill be spared because he was one of their best NCOs. 

He died, aged 32, and was buried in the Peronne Communal Extension Cemetery.

C Pendrill
Yarrow Fellow