Date of birth: October 1895
Parents: William Arthur and Mary Elizabeth Reader
Address: 91 West Street, Warwick
Occupation: Worked for the Daimler Company
Percy was baptised at St Paul’s in Warwick on 23rd October 1895. His parents were living at 91 West Street and his father is recorded as a labourer.
In the 1901 census, William and Mary were living at 91 West Street with three sons Ernest (16), William (14) and Percy (5). William Snr. and Ernest are both recorded as blacksmith’s strikers, while William Jnr. is recorded as a shoemaker’s errand boy. William and Mary’s older children, Kate and Thomas, were not in the household.
Mary died in early 1909 and in the 1911 census, the household consisted of William, daughter Kate (32) and sons Thomas (28), William (24) and Percy (15). Percy is a greengrocer’s errand boy.
Warwick Advertiser 25th September 1915
“Reader – Killed in action at the Dardanelles on August 10th 1915, Private Percy Reader of the 9th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, aged 19. His memory will be ever dear to his Sister and his brothers”
Rank & Number: Private, 4688
Regiment/Service: 9th (Service) Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment
Brigade/Division: 39th Brigade, 13th (Western) Division
Date of death: Tuesday, August 10, 1915
Cause of death/Battle: Killed in Action - Battle of Sari Bair, Gallipoli campaign
Commemorated/Buried: Helles Memorial, Turkey
Awards: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Commemorated locally at: St Pauls Church
Army records state that Percy first entered the theatre of war in the Balkans on the 13th July 1915 and he survived for little more than a month.
The War Diary for August 10th 1915 for the 9th Royal Warwickshire Regiment in the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (Gallipoli and Dardanelles) reads:
“Early on the morning of the 10th the Turks attacked our position with disastrous results for the Warwickshire Regiment. It was found impossible to hold the line with no support immediately available. The Ghurkas and Sikhs retired, the trenches were enfiladed by machine gun fire and our men were mown down. Casualties which occurred during the day were – killed: officers 4, O.R. 44; Wounded: officers 4, O.R. 147; Missing: officers 1, O.R. 117; sick O.R. 16; Total casualties: officers 9, O.R. 324. Effective strength remaining: officers 1, attached officers 2, O.R. 248.
The remainder of the Battalion returned to the Brigade reserve rest camp near Brigade Headquarters”
Note: O.R. stands for “Other Ranks”
- Unlocking Warwick Research Group
- Warwick Advertiser excerpts courtesy of Warwickshire County Records Office