Lance Corporal 5609, “C” Company 20th Battalion Royal Fusiliers.
Killed in action 20th July 1916, age 22.
Remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, France.
Student of commerce.
Thomas was born on 28th September 1893 at Southport to Samuel Dudley Sedgley and his wife Elizabeth. He went to St. Chad’s School, Ladybran, Ducie Avenue Central and Manchester Municipal School and entered the University in 1914 to study commerce. Thomas was a keen swimmer, enjoyed cricket and football and served as a member of staff on the Board of Trade Labour Exchange at Levenshulme. He was also a sideman and Sunday school teacher at St Chad’s when war broke out.
Thomas joined the University Office Training Corps in October 1914 and enlisted on 3rd December 1914 with the Royal Fusiliers proceeding to the front in November 1915. He was reported missing as a result of fighting at High Wood. His captain wrote to his parents: “We know that your son was wounded, and whilst wounded went and magnificently worked a machine-gun. This gun was captured and we think your son was captured with it. On behalf of the remaining officers and myself I should like to tell you how very highly he was honoured by the regiment for his courage. On this occasion, as on previous ones, he behaved himself as only a real hero could, and went to work that machine-gun after seeing all of it’s crew hit. We cannot speak too highly of him, and the company feels his loss very greatly.” The sergeant major of the company also recalled Thomas’ gallant actions during other recent fierce engagements. Shortly before his death he had been recommended for a commission.