Walter William Ansty (1891-1915)

by Gary. M. Ansteychief researcher of the Anstey story project.

Walter William Ansty, a member of the Sixpenny Handley Ansteys, was born in 1891 in Tollard Royal, Wiltshire to parents George Ansty and Sarah Ann Rogers. He was the second eldest of six children (brother to fellow Anstey Hero Harold Augustine Ansty), the family moving from Tollard Royal to Old Salisbury Lane, Dunbridge, Romsey, Hampshire, at some point before 1901.

By the time of the 1911 Census, Walter had already enlisted into the Army in Winchester in Hampshire, and he was serving with the 2nd Battalion, Hampshire Regiment in Wynberg, Cape Province, South Africa. From there he served in Mauritius until 1913 and then India until 1914. At the outbreak of World War One, Walter and his battalion returned to England, arriving on 22 December 1914. In early 1915, he set sail to Gallipoli in Turkey, by now he was a Corporal (Regimental Number: 8673). Walter took part in the fatal Landing at Cape Helles during the Battle of Gallipoli on 25 April 1915 and he was killed in action three days later on 28 April 1915.

[Note: the 2nd Battalion Hampshire Regiment – August 1914 : in Mhow, India. Returned to England, arriving at Plymouth 22 December 1914. Moved to Romsey and on 13 February 1915 to Stratford-upon-Avon. 13 February 1915 : came under orders of 88th Brigade in 29th Division. Moved to Warwick. Sailed from Avonmouth for Gallipoli, going via Egypt where it landed at Alexandra on 2 April 1915. It sailed again on 12 April and landed next day at Mudros (Lemnos) which was to be the advanced base for operations at Gallipoli. The battalion landed at Cape Helles on the ship “River Clyde” on 25 April 1915 – the landing was described thus “The plan was that the HMT River Clyde would ground herself on the beach and troops from the Munsters and the 2nd Hampshires would disembark and attack; while the Royal Dublin Fusiliers landed in small boats. The Dublin men were immediately met with catastrophic gunfire, the same punishment was then inflicted upon the Hampshires and the Munsters. After initial successes the ANZAC troops were pushed back in the north, whilst in the south the British advance had ground to a halt.“]

The ‘Portsmouth Evening News‘ 10 June 1915 reported “2nd Hants Regiment Dardanelles – Killed: Anstey Cpl W. W.

Walter is honoured at the Helles Memorial in Gallipoli, Turkey (Panel 126-135 or 223-226 228-229 & 328). He is also commemorated on a plaque at St Peter’s Church, East Tytherley in Hampshire. On 28 April 2015, the Tenor bell of St Peter’s Church tolled 100 times to commemorate the centenary of the death of ‘Corporal Walter William Ansty, of the 2nd Battalion, Hampshire Regiment’. 

For his services he was awarded the 1914-15 Star Medal, as well as the Victory and British War medals.

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