BOON, William Robert

No.20117, Lance Corporal William Robert BOON
Aged 29

2nd Battalion, Norfolk Regiment
formerly 8477, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Saturday, 24th February 1917

William Robert Boon was born in 1888 in Enfield Highway, Middlesex,(Edmonton Q1-1888 3A:401) baptised in Enfield on 24th June 1888, the son of William and Elizabeth Grass BOON (née BISHOP).

1891 census...Aged 3, he was at 1 Green's Cottages, Enfield with his father William [25] farm labourer born in Fordham; his mother Elizabeth [25] born in Chippenham and his sister Ellen [1] born in Enfield Highway.

1901 census...Aged 13, he was at Peach Street, Fordham with his parents; sisters Mirce Ellen and Antoinette Emily [8] born Enfield Highway; brothers Edward Abner [7], Ernest Charles [2] and Harry [1]. His 3 brothers were born in Fordham.

1911 census...Aged 23, a farm labourer, he was at Church Street, Fordham with his parents; sister Antoinette Emily; brothers Edward Abner (farm labourer) , Ernest Charles, Harry and John [7] born in Fordham. Also there was a boarder, his grandfather Charles BISHOP [80] pensioner, born Chippenham.

On the pension card his father was at 3 Council House, Isleham Road, Fordham.

He enlisted in Bury St. Edmunds.
The 2nd Norfolks were wiped out at the siege of Kut , either killed or captured. For a while the remnants (recovered invalids and drafts) were part of the "Norsets" (formed as a composite battalion with the remnants of the Dorsets). Then a new 2nd Battalion was formed in Basra in July 1915.

from F.Loraine Petre's book "History of the Norfolk "Regiment":-
At 6 am the battalion continued its advance on the Dahra Ridge, Norfolks in the centre, Gurkhas on the right and Punjabis on the left. 'D' and 'C' companies in front, 'A' and 'B' in support. After 800 yards the Punjabis were driven back, exposing the left flank of the Norfolks. Despite this the Norfolks and Gurkhas reached their objective, with most Norfolk casualties resulting from enfilade fire for three hours on their exposed left flank. They spent the rest of the day on the captured ridge before being relieved that night.. Casualties were:- 1 officer killed and 7 wounded, 10 other ranks killed, 112 wounded and 7 missing.
One of the wounded was Arthur Turner from Fordham who died later of his wounds. see here

Basra memorial before it was moved by Saddam Hussein

William Boon is commemorated on the Basra Memorial, Iraq, panel 10

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