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Lieutenant: 10617 Sidney MUDDLE.

Born: 1890. Ashfield, New South Wales, Australia. Birth Cert:4724/1890.

Married: 1920. Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia. Marriage Cert:20181/1920.

Wife: Caroline Elizabeth Muddle. nee: Hart. (1892-1967)

Died: 1963. Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Death Cert:938/1963.

Father: John Waller Muddle. (1859-1909)

Mother: Agnes Muddle. nee: Wakeford. (1861-1919)


Sidney Muddle enlised with the Australian Service Corps on the 26th July 1915 and was transfered to 24th Company on the 1st of March 1916 and promoted to the rank of Corporal on the 17th of March. Sidney proceed overseas onboard HMAT A34 "Persic" from Sydney on the 30th May and disembarked at Plymouth england on the 25th July 1916.


Sidney continued with his training after ariving in England and was marched to the No:5 Officer Cadet Battalion at Trinity College Cambridge on the 6th of February 1917.

In February 1916, a new system of training for officers was introduced, after which temporary commissions could only be granted if a man had been through an Officer Cadet unit. Entrants would have to be aged over 18 and a half, and to have served as a ranker or to have been with an OTC. The training course lasted four and a half months.

Australian Officer Cadets at Trinity College 1917.

"Blunderbuss" Trinity College, August 1917.

After Sidney had completed his training he was appointed to the rank of 2nd Lieutenant on the 30th June 1917 and placed on the General Reinforcements List for deployment for France. He proceeded overseas for France from Tidworth on the 13th of July and was march in at Harve on the 14th. Sidney was Taken on in Strength in the field with the 33rd Battalion AIF on the 18th of July 1917.

Sidney did not stay on the front line for long before returning to England suffering from Myalgia on the 8th of August and was admitted to Tidwoth Military Hospital. After Sidney was discharged he was posted to the 9th Training Battalion at he Durrington Army Camp at Lark Hill. He proceed overseas for France again on the 22nd of November and re joined his unit on the 2nd of December and was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant 8th of February 1918.


4th-5th April 1918

The Strength of the 9th Infantry Brigade was about 2,250 but their casulties during the 2 days of fighting numbered 30 Officers and 635 men either killed in action or missing.

9th Infantry Brigade Casulties.4th-5th April 1918
33rd Battalion. AIF 3 Officers 82 Other ranks
34th Battalion. AIF 5 Officers 120 Other ranks
35th Battalion. AIF 9 Officers 282 Other ranks (including 44 missing)
36th Battalion. AIF 12 Officers 133 Other ranks (including 1 missing)
9th Machine Gun Company. AIF 1 Officer 18 Other ranks (including 4 missing)

16th April 1918.

’On the 16th April, the rumours of a new German Offensive against Amiens seemed to be definitely confirmed. A German prisoner, taken by the French, volunteered the that Villers Bretonneux was to be attacked the next day. The 5th Australian Division, which had come line on the night of the 6th/7th April, and held the sector from Villers Bretonneux (inclusive) to the Somme canal was warned to be ready to retake the town, if captured by attack from the north ; and other preparations and counter-preparations were made. About 4 A.M. on the 17th, Villers Bretonneux, Bois d'Aquenne, to the west of it and the village of Cachy, to the south, were heavily drenched for three hours with phosgene, mustard and irritant gasses. But no assault followed. As soon as possible the local garrison, consisting of the 6/London(58 Dvn) and the 33rd Australian Battalion, was got out of the shelters in the town into the trenches around it. The gas shelling was repeated in the evening from 4 to 7 P.M., next morning and on the following days, being increased so as to include Bois I'Abbe, but with greatly reduced results. Nevertheless it was impossible for anyone to move that area without feeling some ill-effects from the mustard gas, and there were, in all, 1,074 gas casualties.’

’The gassing of Villers Bretonneux seemed to point to the probability of its not being attacked, but by this time air photographs had revealed the signs of imminent operations; an increase in the number of enemy batteries had also been noticed, while the roads were being registered by German artillery. There were, however, also indications that the Albert sector might be the objective of an attack which might extend to Arras and Vimy Ridge. On the 21st there was much air fighting near the Somme, and the famous airman Richthofen was brought down.1. That night a man of the 4th Guard Division, captured by the 8th Dvn , disclosed the fact that his formation had just relieved the 9th Bavarian Reserve Division in front of Marcelcave , and would attack Villers Bretonneux at 3 A.M. on the 23rd. Counter-preparations were continued, and the German railway centres were bombed, particularly Chaulnes .2 'No infantry assault materialized on the 23rd, two deserters came in from the 77th Reserve Division, just arrived from Russia, which had entered the line on 20th, south of the 4th Guard Division, opposite Cachy, and the French captured a gunner of the Guard Ersatz Division opposite Hangard. All these men said that the relief of the line divisions by " storm " divisions had been completed the infantry were ready to advance; the bombardment would begin early on the 24th and. last two and-a -quarter hours: and the attack would be assisted by new German tanks, which were already in position near the front line. 2 It is from the fact that tanks were used to punch a hole in the British line on either side of Villers Bretonneux, and that, in consequence, the Germans gained possession of the town and ground on either side for a short time, that the fighting on the 24th derives its interest.’

Sidney was Severly Gassed during this action at Villers Bretonneux and was treated by the Australian Field Ambulance before being Struck Off Strength and transfered to the 9th General Hospital at Rouen on the 19th of April where he remained to receive treatment before embarking for England onboard the Hospital Ship "Grantully Castle" on the 21st of April 1918.

HM Hospital Ship "Grantully Castle"

Sidney was admitted to the 3rd London General Hospital and Wandsworth on the 22nd of April where he spent nearly 3 month convalescing. He returned to France via Southampton on the 12th July 1918 and was marched in to Roulles the next day. Sidney was treated by the 47 Casualty Clearing Station on the 26th July when he was suffering from Gastritis and was transfered to the 3rd General Hospital at Le Tresport on the 29th. Sidney was discharged to Base Depot at Harve on the 7th of August and rejoined his unit on the 7th of September.

On the 24th of September Sidney was admitted to the 2nd General Hospital suffering from Laryngitis. Sidney was granted leave by the Medical Bourd for 3 weeks from the 10th until the 31st of October. After his leave he was marched to the front as Conducting Officer with the Finance Section where he remained until the 27th of March 1919 before returning to England for Demobilisation. Sidney returned to Australia on the 31st of July and was discharged with his appointment being terminated from the AIF on the 23rd of November 1919.

Family Information

Sidneys parents John and Agnes Muddle were married in 1884 at Sydney, N.S.W. Marriage Cert:64/1884 and had 6 children. Linda Muddle born 1886 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Birth Cert:6023/1886. Gladys Muddle born 1888 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Birth Cert:6009/1888. Sidney Muddle born 1890 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Birth Cert:4724/1890 and died 1963 at Sydney, N.S.W. Death cert:938/1963. Harry Muddle born 1895 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Birth Cert:1232/1895 and died 1956 at Chatswood, N.S.W. Death Cert:29334/1956. Bessie Agnes Muddle born 1896 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Birth Cert: 19405/1896. Marjorie Muddle born 1900 at Burwood, N.S.W. Birth Cert:20795/1900.

Sidney's father John Waller Muddle was born 1859 at Sydney, N.S.W. Birth Cert:519/1859 and died 1909 at Ashfield, N.S.W. Death Cert:4430/1909. His mother Agnes Elizabeth Muddle nee: Wakeford was born 1861 at Campbelltown, N.S.W. Birth Cert: 6538/1861 and died 1919 at Burwood, N.S.W. Death Cert:25064/1919. His wife Caroline Elizabeth Muddle nee: Hart was born 1892 at Parramatta, N.S.W. Birth Cert:28603/1892 and died 1957 at Sydney, N.S.W. Death Cert:2592/1967.

(Family information Robert McLellan 2013)

John Waller Muddle who was born on 9 March 1859 in Sydney registration district in New South Wales. It is thought to be John, who was the John Muddle, who started as a clerk with the NSW Government Railways and Tramways on 20 October 1875, when he would have been 16 years old. His starting wage was 15 shillings per week that was soon increased to 20 shillings, then on 1 October 1876 he was made salaried at £54 per annum. He was promoted on 1 December 1877 and his salary doubled to £110 per annum, then he was promoted again on 24 April 1878 and his salary increased to £150 per annum. He stayed at that position and salary for four years until on the 1 August 1882 he was transferred and made assistant to Mr Downs at £200 per annum. John transferred to the Locomotive Engineer's Office on 25 June 1883 where his salary was increased to £220 per annum on 1 July 1883, to £235 on 1 July 1884 and to £250 on 1 July 1885. His first recorded absence from duty was for 21 days from 29 December 1885 to 18 January 1886, and he was not recommended for a salary increase in 1886. Then on 21 February 1887 he was transferred to Head Office at his existing salary of £250 per annum where he succeeded Mr Mason. But after two years in that position he for some reason exchanged positions with Mr Handfield in the Stores Branch and his salary reduced to £235 per annum. John's employment record then continued in another ledger that has not been seen.

When he was 24 years old and a £220 per annum assistant in the Locomotive Engineer's Office John married Agnes Wakeford, who was about 22, at St James' Church, Sydney on 23 January 1884. The marriage was reported in 30 January 1884 edition of The Sydney Morning Herald. Agnes was the daughter of William and Elizabeth Wakeford, and her birth had been registered during 1861 Campbelltown registration district, which is about 25 miles south-west of central Sydney. At the time of her marriage she was living with her parents at Ruabon, Leichhardt, Petersham, She was the sister of Henry Edgar Wakeford who was to marry John's sister Agnes Emma Muddle in 1902.

John and Agnes had six children, the first five where born in Ashfield registration district, which is about four miles west of central Sydney, between 1886 and 1896, their last child was born in Burwood registration district, which is about seven miles west of central Sydney, in 1900. John was an officer in the Examiner's branch of the Registrar-General's Department. John died on June 1909 in Ashfield registration district at the age of 50, and he was buried in his brother Sydney's grave in St Thomas' Church of England Cemetery at Enfield in Sydney. Agnes was living at 29 Hugh Street in Ashfield when her sons Sidney and Harry, who were living with her, enlisted in 1915. Ten years after John's death Agnes died on 9 December 1919 in Burwood registration district, at the age of 58, and she was buried with her husband in St Thomas' Church of England Cemetery at Enfield.

The Lineage & History of the Muddle Families

Military Records

Australian National Archives

Under Construction: 14/06/2013-29/06/2014.

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