William Ellis first makes an appearance in Chailey’s Parish Magazine in March 1915 when it is noted that he is serving his King and Country. In October 1915 he is noted as Ellis, Quarter Master Sergeant W, 2nd Royal West Kent, England and in March 1916 as Ellis, Warrant Officer W, 2nd Royal West Kent, England.
In December 1917 the magazine notes that he is attached to the RFC and this information is then repeated up to and including the final published roll call in July 1919.
There is only really one possibility listed at The National Archives and that is 4239 Warrant Officer Class 2, William Ellis of the Royal West Kent Regiment. He is also noted as Warrant Officer Class 2 with the Middlesex Regiment. A Training Reserve Battalion number is also given (TR/10/40004).
William certainly had Newick connections and attended the village school there from 1882. Later, during the First World War, the headmaster, John Oldaker, compiled notes on his serving ex pupils and asked each of them to send him a photo. The photo of William reproduced on this page was the one which he sent his old headmaster, and John Oldaker also added the following notes:
William G Ellis
Enlisted 10th Sept 1894, Royal West Kent Regt; still in the army at the outbreak of the War having served in many parts of the world. King’s and Queen’s
medals and clasps. Came to South Africa England from , October 1914 as colour
sergeant. Promoted company sergeant major, October 1914. Regimental Quartermaster Sergeant, May
1915. Gazetted lieutenant 25th
August 1917. Quartermaster RFC at Yatesbury, Wilts. Transferred to 53rd
Regiment. To Sussex 28th Feb
1919. Demobbed 28th June
My thanks to Simon Stevens for the information and photograph from John Oldaker's collection.