William Stephen John Anstee (b 1898)

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

William Stephen John Anstee, a member of the Houghton Regis Anstees, was born on 10 July 1898 in Ocford, Maidstone to parents Samuel Anstee (an Anstey Hero) and Elizabeth Ann Clarke; he was brother to fellow Anstey Hero Samuel Sydney James Anstee. In the 1911 Census he was living with his family at 53 Southam Street, North Kensington.

We have struggled to put together a coherent story of William’s World War One service. All we currently know is the following:

  • He served with the 1st Battalion Middlesex Regiment as a Private (Service Number: L/16149);
  • Under the name “John Anstee” appears “Service number: L/16149 Regiment: Depot. Middlesex Regiment Enlistment date: 23-Aug-1915 Discharge date: 10-Oct-1917received Silver War Badge on 23 October 1917” (we presume this is the same person); and
  • For his services he was awarded the Victory Medal (and presumably the British War medal). On his Medal Index card is written ’28 April 1915′ next to ‘Date of Entry Therein’ – it is very unclear if this is the date he entered a Theatre of War or the date he first enlisted

We also know that after the war was over, on 5 May 1920 in Fulham, William attested for the Royal Regiment of Artillery (Royal Field Artillery) as a Gunner (Service Number: 729732) – at this time he was a painter living with his family at 27 Woodstock Road, Shepherds Bush (he also confirmed that he had previously served with the “1st Battalion Middlesex Regiment“). He was discharged on 14 February 1923 in Fulham under “Para 156(5) T. A. Regs“.

Anybody who can add to the above somewhat skeletal account please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

The ‘West London Observer‘ 31 December 1920 reported “ARTIST’S MODEL’S ADVENTURE. Wm. Anstee. 22, labourer, of 27, Woodstock Road, Shepherd’s Bush, was charged on remand with assaulting Nellie Green slade, artist’s model, of 9, Porten Road, West Kensington Mr. R. J. Davis defended. At the last hearing Prosecutrix alleged while looking at the shops in Uxbridge Road on the evening of the 20th the defendant accosted her, took her arm, led her into Bloomfontain Road and in a lane running to the football ground assaulted her by punching her several times in the face and pushing her down in the mud. He was arrested at the Silver Cinema later. Defendant denied the charge, and in the witness-box, said that it was the prosecutrix who accosted him and took his arm; she turned with him into Bloemfontein Road and asked him if he had any money. He said, Why?” and she replied, “we might have a bit of fun together.” He said, “ i dont want any truck with you.” and pushing her on one side, walked away. P. C. Heathcote, 529 T, who arrested the accused, stated in answer to Mr. Davis that a doctor examined the prosecutrix at the station, Mr.Davis: Did the doctor find any marks of violence on her? Witness: No. Mr. Davis What did his certificate state Witness: That she was suffering from shock. Mr. Davis: Were her clothes muddy or dirtv Witness: No. The Magistrate observed the charge failed and dismissed the accused.

At the time of the 1939 Register William was still unmarried, and still living with his parents and brother at 27 Woodstock Grove, Shepherds Bush – he was working as a general labourer. A couple of years later in 1941 in Hammersmith he married Bessie Carpenter and they had a daughter Phyllis Anstee (b 1942 Hammersmith).

William died in Brent, Middlesex in 1965.

Anybody who would like to add anything to this biography please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

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