Date of birth: 30.11.1922
Date of death: 22.4.1943
Regiment: Duke of Wellington (West Riding)
Family information: Son of Percy Willoughby and Annie nee Sutton
Service number: 4627255
Ernest Willoughby was a Private serving with the 1st Battalion Duke of Wellington (West Riding) Regiment when he died on 22nd April 1943 age 20. He is buried at Thibar Seminary War Cemetery.
In May 1943 the war in North Africa came to an end in Tunisia with the defeat of the Axis powers by a combined Allied force. On 8th November 1942, Commonwealth and American troops made a series of landings in Algeria and Morocco. The Germans responded immediately by sending a force from Sicily to northern Tunisia, which checked the Allied advance east in early December. Thibar was just behind the limit of the advance that winter.
Pontefract & Castleford Express 28th May 1943
“DIED OF WOUNDS
Much sympathy is felt for Mr and Mrs Percy Willoughby of Knottingley, whose only son Ernest, was wounded in action on April 21st and died the following day. He was in the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment (B.N.A.F.) and went abroad in February, after being in the army about a year. Before joining the Forces he was employed at Messrs Bagley and Co, Knottingley.”
Ernest Willoughby was born on 30th November 1922 and baptised on 24th December 1922 at Christ Church, Knottingley. He was the son of Percy Willoughby and Annie (nee Sutton) who had married in the third quarter of 1922 and this was registered at Pontefract.