BIRD, Gilbert John
(Service number 52562)

First Rank Lance Corporal Last Rank


Date 24 March 1889 Place of Birth Walton, Somerset, England

Enlistment Information

Date Age
Address at Enlistment Waimate, Studholme Junction
Occupation Farmer
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single on attestation; married before embarkation
Next of Kin Mrs Hannah Isabella BIRD (wife), 15 Bert Street, Waimate
Religion Church of England
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Unit, Squadron, or Ship 28th Reinforcements, Wellington Infantry Regiment, B Company
Date 24 July 1917
Transport Waitemata
Embarked From Destination Plymouth, Devon, England
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Wellington Infantry Regiment

Military Awards

Service Medals
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations



Date 21 July 1970 Age 81 years
Place of Death Ashburton
Memorial or Cemetery Ashburton Cemetery
Memorial Reference Old Lawn Section, Plot 667
New Zealand Memorials Willowbridge & Studholme District Roll of Honour

Biographical Notes

Gilbert John Bird was born on 24 March 1889 at Walton, Somerset, England, the eldest son of John Henry and Mary (née Craddock) Bird. He was still at home in England in 1911, working as a farm hand. About 1912/1913 he had come to New Zealand. Gilbert married Hannah Isabella Bradley on 22 March 1917 at St Paul’s Methodist Church, Waimate. He enlisted before his marriage but was soon able to name his wife as next-of-kin.

Lance Corporal G. J. Bird embarked with the Wellington Infantry Regiment of the 28th Reinforcements on 24 July 1917 per the “Waitemata”, destined for Plymouth, Devon. He returned to New Zealand by the “Port Hacking” which was due at Lyttelton on 16 August 1919. At a ballot for land for soldiers, held in mid December 1919 at Christchurch, G. J. Bird of Waimate was successful in drawing a section of the Acton settlement. Gilbert was farming at Pendarves by 1929 when he was elected to the school committee. Mr G. J. Bird, of Chertsey, travelled home to England in 1935 and stayed with his parents at Chingford, Essex. In 1942 he appealed for release of his eldest son, Trooper John Bradley Bird, from camp to assist with the harvest at Pendarves. Gilbert John Bird died on 21 July 1970 at Ashburton where he was buried.

The name of G. Bird is inscribed on the Willowbridge and Studholme District First World War Roll of Honour.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [25 November 2020]; Ashburton Cemetery headstone image (Ashburton District Council) [15 July 2021]; Sun, 8 August 1919, Timaru Herald, 15 December 1919 (Papers Past) [16 July 2021]

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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