Absentee Voters, 1918

Lists of 'absent' servicemen, compiled for the 1918 General Election

Transcribed by Neil Fortey

Bottesford absentee voters list - completed on the next image. | Leicestershire Records Office
Bottesford absentee voters list - completed on the next image.
Leicestershire Records Office
Bottesford absentee voters list | Leicestershire Records Office
Bottesford absentee voters list
Leicestershire Records Office
Absentee voters list, Muston | Leicestershire Records Office
Absentee voters list, Muston
Leicestershire Records Office

The following discussion has been takenfrom explanations given by the ‘1914-1918’, ‘My Family Ancestors’ and ‘Wikipedia’ websites:




The United Kingdom general election of 1918 was called immediately after the Armistice with Germany which ended World War I, and held on Saturday 14 December 1918. It was the first election to be held after the Representation of the People Act 1918. It was thus the first election in which women over the age of 30, and all men over the age of 21, could vote. Previously, all women and many poor men had been excluded from voting.

In general election of December 1910 the parliamentary seat of Melton Mowbray had been won by Charles Edward Yate from the Liberals who had held it in the two previous general elections in 1906 as and January 1910. Yates was returned unopposed in 1918 and went on to successfully defend the seat for the Unionists in 1922, 1923 and 1924.

A feature of the 1918 election was the importance given to ensuring that men in the armed forces were included in the electoral roll. An act of Parliament passed on 6 February, 1918, allowed service men to register in order to obtain a vote in the constituency of their home address. Voters details were initially supplied by the next of kin of the household of the soldier to local voter registration officers. Once this process was completed, the names of those in the army were sent to the Adjutant General’s Department of the War Office, who then arranged to send voting cards to soldiers who were in the United Kingdom and ballot papers to men in France, Flanders and Italy. Men serving in more distant theatres of war were allowed to vote through use of a proxy voting form. The hurried and rather haphazard nature of collecting the original information at home meant that some men were missed out altogether and the details given for others often inaccurate.

The first Absentee Voters lists were published on 15 October, 1918 from applications received up to 18 August, 1918, and a second list was published on 15 April, 1919. The lists recorded their regiment, number and rank at the time, as well as home address. Sadly, there is no surviving central register of Absentee Voters, and many individual lists have not survived. We are fortunate in that the List for Bottesford and Muston is kept in the Leicestershire Record Office at Wigston Magna.

These lists are valuable in that they link names, addresses and service histories of men who survived the fighting. Many of those from Bottesford are also found on the ‘church organ’ list, but not all. The Bottesford list includes some men whose service careers we were not previously aware of, and this is also the case with all those on the Muston list.

The following tables are a transcription of the absentee voters lists for Bottesford and Muston, respectively.


Bottesford absentee voters, 1918

NameAddressNumber and RankService Unit
Allen, JohnBarkstone Lane486785 Sapper229th Field Company, Royal Engineers
Allcorn, FredHigh Street289474 SapperR.T.E.
Asher, JohnStation RoadO.S., B/2/6117HMS Attentive, R.N.V.R.
Evans, William SamuelChapel Street27651 Private2nd East Yorkshire Regiment
Hart, Arthur JamesQueen Street221691 PrivateNo.4 Wireless Observation Group, Royal Engineers
Kennington, Henry BarkerMarket Street317742 Private267th Siege Battery
Kirton, Isaac GeorgeEasthorpe238237 Private410th Agricultural Company, Labour Corps
Ogden, Arthur WilliamBelvoir Road23130 Private720th Labour Company
Parr, AlbertHigh Street890194 CorporalGeneral Base Depot, Egypt Royal Field Artillery
Willcockson, FredHigh StreetWR295595 Sapper267th Railway Company
Allcorn, Francis CecilWyggeston Terrace15065 Sergeant3rd Grenadier Guards
Allcorn, FrankWyggeston Terrace25905 Private9th Leicestershire Regiment
Barrand, William PercivalChurch StreetLieutenant5th Yorkshire and Lancashire Regiment
Ball, Arthur WilliamHigh StreetLieutenantRoyal Air Force
Barrand, William JosephGrantham Roadnot givennot given
Briggs, Thomas HaroldGrantham RoadWR177009 SapperR.O.D., Royal Engineers
Bugg, HarveyMarket StreetS4/041909 CorporalFrozen Meat Coy, R.A.S.C.
Calcraft, James EdwardWyggeston Terrace14191 PrivateH.M.S. Lucia, Royal Marines
Calcraft, Charles WilliamWyggeston Terrace49211046th Division Signal Company, Royal Engineers
Cox, Albert EdwardWest End3rd Writer M.22659H.M.S. Egmont
Christmas, ReginaldWest End27918 Private2nd Leicestershire Regiment
Darby, WalterChapel StreetM/2/076432 Private338th M.T.C., R.A.S.C
Edwards, WilliamWest End37245 Private46th South Staffordshire Regiment
Gaylard, Trevor RichardStation RoadM/2/182650 Private4th Petrol Company, A.S.C.
Gilder, WilliamOrston Lane2108 (S) PrivateLand Defences, Scapa Flow Ch.
Hart, EwartQueen StreetO.S. BZ/5631H.M.S. Marshal Ney, R.N.V.R.
Handley, John KirtonNormanton Road200928 DriverE Battery, R.H.A.
Hilson, Francis WilliamHigh Street30143 Private1st Devonshire Regiment
Hudson, Herbert WrightQueen Street876494 A/BdrD/282 Brigade, R.F.A.
Hickson, Francis VincentThe ElmsCaptain1/6 Royal Sussex Cyclists
Jallands, HerbertEasthorpe469504 Private482nd Agriculture Company, Labour Corps
King, Lionel MayBelvoir Road2nd Lieutenant3rd Res. Gloucestershire Regiment
Kirton, TomEasthorpe24611Yorkshires
Kennewell, ArthurHigh Street7962 Bdr21st Battery, R.F.A.
Lane, Harry WilliamBelvoir Road494230 Private86th T.R.B.
Miller, Ernest JamesHigh Street18305 Corporal4th K.O.S. Borderers
Rawdin, HarryThe Green5/16405 Sergeant53rd (Y.S.), B.N., T.R. (N.F.S.)
Rawdin, Frederick CecilThe Greennot givennot given
Richardson, Donald HicklingThe CroftMajor12th Tank Battalion, 18th Company, Tank Corps
Sutton, WilliamHigh Street17425 Sgt2nd Leicestershire Regiment
Schofield, JamesHigh Street601 MusicianRoyal Naval School Music, Eastney, Royal Marines
Silverwood, Arthur EdwardHigh Street2nd LieutenantP.O.W.
Silverwood, Cecil TomHigh Street268069 SapperWireless, Royal Engineers
Silverwood, Robert CharlesHigh Street41247 Private16th H.L.I.
Tinkler, HarryRetford’s Cottages274043 Sapper29th Company, Royal Engineers
Welbourne, Harold HermanQueen StreetA.B. J15373H.M.S. “Blenheim” (Redpole)

Muston absentee voters, 1918

NameAddressNumber and RankService Unit
Lamin, Robert CharlesGoodson’s Farm204490 Gunner29th Battery, Royal Field Artillery
Barrett, John Francis TufnellThe Rectory2nd LieutenantRoyal Air Force
Coy, CyrilMuston Gorse90937 PrivateDurham Light Infantry
Norman, Henry CharlesMuston Post Office62086 L. Cpl.,2nd Middlesex Regiment
Oliver, Albert EdwardGreen’s Lane40220 Private2nd Leicestershire Regiment
Oliver, Charles CecilGreen’s Lane136030 Private23rd Depot Coy, 4th Battalion Machine Gun Corps
Tinkler, AmosMay’s Row489770 Sapper26th Group Field Survey Company. Royal Engineers
Topps, Theodore33066 PrivateB Company, 1st Battalion, Yorkshire and Lancashire Regiment


This page was added on 09/11/2015.

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