RAWSON, Arthur

Lance Corporal Arthur Rawson
30546 17th Battalion Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)

Arthur Rawson was born in 1896 in Selston, Notts son of William Rawson born Selston and Ellen (nee Webster) born Kirkby-in-Ashfield.  He was one of 4 children having a brother William and sisters Ellen and Maud. In 1901 the family was living at Old Westwood (Palmerston Street) and his father was a coal miner hewer as well as a publican. His mother Ellen was also helping in the pub and by 1911 his father was a full time inn keeper, possibly keeping the ‘New Inn’, Old Westwood, which was later demolished in the 1960’s. In 1911, Arthur then aged 15 was still at school so it seems his parents were able to keep him in full time education beyond the normal school leaving age.

Arthur’s service records have not survived but his Medal Rolls Index Card shows he was awarded both the British War and Victory Medals. He was also awarded Silver War Badge number 491668 indicating he sustained either an injury or contracted an illness whilst in service. He enlisted on 26th August 1915, served overseas and remained with the Sherwood Foresters throughout the remainder of the war, until he was discharged on 14th Dec 1918 as ‘surplus to military requirements, having suffered impairment since entry into the service’. On 3rd September 1916, Arthur’s brother William, two years his senior and also a 17th Battalion Sherwood Forester was killed in action as was another local serviceman from the same Battalion, Thomas Burton from Westwood.

On his return home, in 1921 Arthur married Ada Wright in the Mansfield district and they had at least 2 children, Lilian baptised 1922 and Agnes baptised 1927 both at Westwood, St. Mary’s with father’s occupation noted as ‘publican’ and residence as ‘Old Westwood.’ Arthur’s father, William is listed in the Kelly’s Trade Directory as a ‘beer retailer’ at Westwood from 1904 to 1922, but in 1922 his father William died and his mother took over the running of the business obviously assisted by son Arthur.


Photo: Centre back Tom Burton killed WW1, front right Charles Burton who died of the effects of gas poisoning, after the war in 1921, both Sherwood Foresters. Thought to all be Westwood lads in the photo. Could  any of them could be Arthur or William Rawson?