World War 1

Search the known records to date of those lost from the wider Alnwick area in World War 1

Generally showing where they are commemorated, when they died and some basic facts about each person. There are gaps, however, so if you can fill in any missing details do please contact us.

Ernest Miller Watts

Ernest Miller



Service Number:

Company Sergeant Major (Acting)

Northumberland Fusiliers, 10th (Service) Battalion



Tyne Cot Memorial (Tyne Cot Cemetery)

Service History:
Watts enlisted in the Army at the age of 15, in about 1878, & served nearly 24 years with the Northumberland Fusiliers in the UK, Ireland, India, Singapore & Malta. He became an Army Pensioner in 1902.

Watts re-enlisted in the Northumberland Fusiliers on 3 October, 1914 after undergoing an operation on an old foot injury to make sure he was fit for active service. Three of his sons also served with the Fusiliers, one of who was right beside him when he was killed.
(Source: Paula Robinson, great-granddaughter, via Patricia Jones; May 2018)

Born on 6 August 1863, at Dover, Kent, the son of the late Charles James & Sarah Watts.
(N.B. 'Soldier Died...' records Watts' birthplace as Whitechapel, London.)

After leaving the Army in 1902 Watts & his family settled in Durham where he worked as an Insurance Agent for the Prudential Assurance Company. He had married his wife, Elizabeth, at Berwick, Northumberland when they were both 17 (in about 1880), & they went on to have thirteen children.

In 1911, the family lived at 3, John Street, Durham when five children were still living with their parents with ages ranging from 4 to 20. Two, Lionel Vincent (12) & Reynold Raymond (9) had been born at Alnwick, Northumberland, which places the family living in that area at the time of Watts' demobilisation.

In addition to the three sons who served with the Northumberland Fusiliers, three other sons also served during WW1, two with the Royal Navy & one in the Merchant Navy.

Watts was survived by his wife Elizabeth, ten of his children, & several grandchildren. (N.B. According to the CWGC website Elizabeth pre-deceased him but this is clearly not the case both from family history & from the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers' Effects, 1901-1929 [available via].)
(Source: Paula Robinson, great-granddaughter, via Patricia Jones; May 2018)

Local Memorial:
Durham Comrades Club Memorial Plaque (N.B. Since disappeared) Durham, St. Margaret of Antioch Churchyard, Crossgate Durham Town Hall Memorial Plaque