William John Hardman was born in Rugby in 1897. He was baptised on 7th Feb 1899 at St Matthews Church, Rugby, together with his sister Nellie, born in late 1898. His parents were James Hardman and Elizabeth née Giles and they were married at St Matthews on 19th Oct 1890.
To start with the family lived at 3 Vine Place, but by 1901, when William was 3, they had moved to Overslade. Father James was a Domestic Groom.
By 1911 James and Elizabeth Hardman had 7 children, William was the fourth son. There was another younger so and two younger daughters. They lived at 36 Union Street Rugby and William was a shop assistant. Before he signed up he was employed by Mr W Elliott, of Dunchurch Road. (Probably at the Mineral Water Factory.)
He joined the 15th Bn., Royal Warwickshire Regiment in May 1916. By this time the family were living at 9 James Street, Rugby.
William John Hardman died of wounds on 27th Oct 1917. The regiment had taken part in the Second Battle of Passchendaele, which started on the 26th.
He was buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery. Lijssenthoek was the location for a number of casualty clearing stations during the First World War. The village was situated on the main communication line between the Allied military bases in the rear and the Ypres battlefields. Close to the Front, but out of the extreme range of most German field artillery, it became a natural place to establish casualty clearing stations.
His elder brother Walter had died in 1915. Another brother, Charles Henry, James and Elizabeth’s oldest son, was to die in 1918.
Mr Hardman would assist in the opening of the Rugby Memorial Gates, in 1921.
RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM