268574 Private Herbert Towlson 2nd/7th Battalion Sherwood Foresters

Private Herbert Towlson


2nd/7th Battalion

Sherwood Foresters


Herbert was born in about 1891 and Baptised At St Mary the Virgin and All Souls, Bulwell on 18 Feb 1891.

Herbert was the oldest child and only son of his parents John Thomas Towlson (a basket maker) and Hester Towlson (nee Hammond).

Herbert’s mum and dad were married at Bulwell at St Mary the Virgin and All Souls on 26 May 1890.

Herbert’s dad John Thomas Towlson was born in about 1869 in Bulwell John Thomas’s mum, dad (William and Sarah Towlson) and siblings were heavily involved in the textile industry.

Herbert’s mum (Hester) was born in about 1869 in Selston.

The census of 1891 shows Herbert now a few weeks old living with his mum and dad in Bulwell. His dad is described as a basket maker.

At the time of the 1901 census Herbert and his family are living in Farndon. His dad is still described as a basket maker. Herbert is 10 years old and now has two younger sisters, Florence Louise (8 years old, baptised in Bulwell 24 May 1893) and Clara Otterline (7 years old she was baptised on March 16th 1894 in the Minster at Southwell). It might seem that the family lived in Southwell for a while before moving to Farndon.

At some point between the summer of 1893 and the 1911 census, Herbert’s dad John Thomas Towlson dies.

In the 1911 census Herbert now aged 20 years is the only source of income for his widowed mother, he is a basket maker. The census shows that he has 2 new sisters Beatrice Mable aged 8 years, and Rose Eleanor aged 4 years. Interestingly this census shows that John Thomas and Hester had 7 children of which only 5 still alive at the time of the census (April 1911).


We do not know exactly when Herbert joined up with 2nd/7th Battalion the Sherwood Foresters – he may have joined up any time from 1914 thru to March 1918 = we do not know for sure. We do know that his Battalion was part of the Territorial Force.