Winter, William Ernest

Dates:
He was aged 24 in 1916

Address
39 Hazelbank Road, Catford

William Ernest Winter was employed as a clerk. He was single when he appeared before the Military Service Tribunal and married later on 23 March 1918.

His brother Stanley Gordon lived at the same address and was also a conscientious objector.

Conscientious Objection during the First World War:
The brothers' appearance before the Military Service Tribunal was reported in the Lewisham Borough News on March 10 1916 and also in The Kentish Mercury on the same day under the headline Brothers' Quaint Objections. They both said they were Presbyterians, attending the Presbyterian Church in Birkhall Road. William told the tribunal that he objected to killing, the Chairman then asked "to killing anything or anybody" to which he replied "Not necessarily anything: God has sent certain things for our use". The Chairman then moved the questioning on to what he would do if someone came and shot his father and his mother, to this line of questioning he replied he would defend them, but not take their life. His claim was disallowed and he gave notice of appeal.

War Service
William Ernest was conscripted into the Non-Combatant Corps at Camberwell on 5 May 1916 and served in the NCC at home from 5 May 1916 until 11 December 1919 when he was demobbed.

After the First World War
He lived with his wife at 20 Birkall Road, his demob address.

Sources:
Cyril Pearce, University of Leeds, Pearce Register of British Conscientious Objectors
Lewisham Borough News 10 March 1916


Ann O'Brien, Volunteer at Lewisham Local History and Archives Centre, May 2014

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