MUTUM, William Frederick

No.23181 Private, William Frederick MUTUM
Aged 21

7th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Died of Illness on Saturday, 23rd November 1918

Silver War Badge

William Frederick Mutum was born in 1897 (Thetford Q2-1897 4B:378) son of William and Martha Ann MUTUM (née BURTON).

1901 census...Aged 4, he was at George Street, Brandon with his father William MUTUM [35] furrier's warehouseman; his mother Martha [37]; sisters Beatrice M. [12], Winifred [9], twin sister Florence [4] and Ivy R. [9 months]. All were born in Brandon. He had an older sister, Kate Lilian (1885)

1911 census...Aged 14, unemployed, he was at London Road, Brandon with his parents (father now a fishmonger); sisters Winifred and Ivy, and brother George [6] born in Brandon. Of the 8 siblings, one had died. It is not possible to say, without certificates, who this was since there were at least 6 deaths of a Mutum baby under one year old in this period.

click here to go to the Brandon at War website for more information

He attested in Bury St Edmunds on 20th November 1915, giving his age as 19, born and living in Brandon at 11 London Road, a horseman. Promoted Lance Corporal on 10th February 1916, he was demoted due to neglect of duty on 25th Juy 1917
His discharge papers, "being no longer physically fit for war service" on 24th October 1917 say he was 20 years 11 months old, 5 feet 3 inches (160 cm)tall, chest 30.5" to 33.5" (77.5 to 85.1 cm), blue eyes, fair hair, a horseman, intending to reside at 11 London Road, Brandon. His next of kin was father, William, residing at 11 London Road, Brandon. He had suffered gun shot wounds to hand and foot.
He was awarded a silver war badge, but the record has not been found.
He had served from 18th November 1915 to 29th February 1916 in UK, BEF 1st March 1916 to 6th April 1916.

He was wounded on 30th March 1916, when the battalion was in the line near Hulluch, in trenches Saville Row, Mud Alley and West Face, at a time when the emphasis was on tunnelling. The war diary says:-
"In the line - 30th March - The enemy fired some whizz bangs (usually a 77m/m (18 pounder)into the QUARRY, wounding five men. We retaliated and the firing ceased".

He was hospitalised in UK from 7th April 1916 to 27th November 1916 and rejoined his unit in France on 19th April 1917 and was back in UK on 14th August 1917 with diabetes mellitus which ultimately led to his discharge. This originated on 30th July 1917 in Arras "not caused by, but aggravated by service conditions". He had been treated in No.2 American General Hospital, at Etretat. He died at home in Brandon.

William Mutum is buried in Brandon Cemetery, grave I:521

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details