John Woodhouse Dyson (1880-1917)

This page is part of a project by David Verguson to research the lives of those who appear on war memorials and rolls of honour in the Lindley area.


John Woodhouse Dyson was born in 1880, the son of Henry Dyson, a weaver, and his wife Harriet. At the time of John's birth Henry and Harriet were living with Harriet's brother William Woodhouse, a butcher of Leymoor Road, Golcar.

Henry and Harriet had a total of five children before Henry died in the late 1890s. By 1901, Harriet and the children were living at 10 Ballroyd Lane, Longwood. Another of her brothers, Joseph, a single man aged 40, and a weaver, lived with them. John had attended Goitfield Board School, Longwood, so the family had probably lived in the area since the mid 1880s.[1]

John, in 1901, worked as a mason's labourer; his sister, Amy, aged 19, was a weaver and thirteen-year-old Willie was a finisher. Two other brothers, Herbert and Leonard, were still at school.

Harriet Dyson married again in the late summer of 1907 and moved to 2 Ballroyd Lane with her husband, Albert Williams, a self-employed tin-plate worker and hardware dealer. The couple shared their four-roomed house with Albert's two sons aged 14 and 21, and her son, Leonard, aged 12. It may be for this reason that in 1911 Willie, by then a cloth presser, and John were both living with their sister Amy who had married Joel Hirst in the spring of 1903. The four of them lived in five rooms at 18 Ballroyd Lane, not far from where the Dyson's had grown up and Harriet still lived.

Sadly, Harriet's new husband died in early September 1909 and was buried at St. Mark's church, Longwood.

John was a member of the Milnsbridge Working Men's Club and by the timer he joined the army at Halifax, on 26 May 1916, at the age of 36, worked as a yardsman for William Shaw, a coal merchant.

After initial training in the Northumberland Fusiliers John posted to the 8th NF on arriving at Etaples on 13 September 1916. Within a few days he was transferred to the 2nd Battalion, the Duke of Wellington's West Riding Regiment. That he should move into a local regiment was either very lucky or the result of a request by him or the thinking of a considerate officer.

In February 1917, while the battalion were serving in the Somme area, John fell ill and died on the 17 February of acute bronchitis at No 48 Casualty Clearing Station. He was 37 years old.

Among John's possessions returned to his sister, Amy, were a pair of spectacles and a "religious book".

John is remembered at the Salendine Nook Baptist Church and at his parish church, St. Mark's, Longwood.

Huddersfield's Roll of Honour: 1914-1922

The following extract is from Huddersfield's Roll of Honour: 1914-1922 (2014) by J. Margaret Stansfield:

DYSON, JOHN WOODHOUSE. Private. No 23774. 2nd Battalion Duke of Wellington's Regiment. Born Leymoor, Golcar, 1.1.1880. Brother of Mrs Amy Hirst, 18 Ballroyd, Longwood. Educated Goitfield Board School, Longwood. Employed as a yardman for Messrs William Shaw, coal merchants. Was a member of the Milnsbridge County Working Men's Club and Institute. Single. Enlisted 26.5.1916. Embarked for France 13.9.1916. Died of acute bronchitis, 17.2.1917, aged 37 years. Buried BRAY MILITARY CEMETERY. Grave location:- Plot 2, Row A, Grave 20.
ROH:- St. Mark's Parish Church, Longwood; Salendine Nook Baptist Churchyard.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission



  1. Leymoor Road may have been near enough to the school for John to have attended while living there.