William Davis Bettles was born on 29th November 1909 at Oldham Street in Latchford, Warrington, the son of William Henry Bettles, who was born in Wolverhampton, and Ann Jane (nee Jones), who was born in Appleton, Warrington. The father was recorded on the 1901 census as being a carter on the farm of Jonathan Barrow on Broad Lane in Grappenhall, and the mother was working as a general domestic servant at Dunmore on Chester Road in Grappenhall, the home of James Kenworthy who was a timber merchant.
William’s parents married in 1909 and by 1911 the family were living on Cann Lane in Appleton. The couple went on to have two more children, Elsie M. who was born in 1912 but sadly died within the year, and Frank who was born in 1914. The father was a carter for a local contractor and in WW1 he served in the Royal Army Service Corps as a driver.
The 1921 census recorded the family of four as living at Brookside Cottage in Appleton, and William’s father, William Henry, was working as a motor driver for W. Lake, a charabanc proprietor at The Red Lion Hotel in Warrington.
Two years later the Bettles family moved to Pear Tree Farm on Stretton Lane in Hatton, as shown by the electoral roll for the autumn of that year.
The 1939 Register recorded the family at the farm, where William Henry and William Davis were fish and fruit salesmen. Ann looked after the house and family and Frank was employed as a wire drawer in Warrington.
In 1942 William Davis Bettles married Winifred Sudbury, who had been born in Stretford, Manchester, but brought up in Antrobus. Winifred was lodging at Oak Tree Cottages on Hatton Lane in Hatton in 1939, and had been formerly employed as an enameller in a gas stove works.
The couple had two children during WW2 and two children after the war.
William Davis Bettles died in 1992 and Winifred died in 2013.
**It is thought that William served in the Royal Artillery in WW2. If anyone has any knowledge of William’s WW2 service, please contact Daresbury District Heritage Group.