William Flowers

Information about birth

Date of birth:
Place of birth:
Collingwood, Tasman, New Zealand

General information

Coal miner

Army information

New Zealand
New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Service number:
 —  Canterbury Regiment, 3rd Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
Place of death:
Joiners Rest, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)


Buttes New British Cemetery, Polygon Wood
Plot: IX
Row: AA
Grave: 8

Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 1

#1 Place of birth

My story

Private William Flowers served in the Canterbury Regiment, Third Battalion, 4th New Zealand Brigade. He was the brother of Charles Flowers, of Pakawau, Collingwood, Nelson, New Zealand.

His unit was in the Polygon Wood sector after the end of the Third Battle of Ypres. Much of the time was spent in wiring, repairing crumbling trenches and improving defences. The landscape was covered with waterlogged shellholes.

Neither the New Zealand Division history or that of the Canterbury Regiment give detailed information for the November 1917-February 1918 period so it is impossible to say with any certainty how William Flowers died on 22 November 1917. On the night of 21/22 November, 3rd Canterbury Battalion relieved the 3rd Auckland Battalion at a position called Joiners Rest, at Polygon Wood and it can be presumed he was killed during this event. The opposing German forces generally held higher ground, and movement in the New Zealand lines was often observed and shelled or machine-gunned.

He is buried in Buttes New British Cemetery in Plot IX, Row AA, Grave 8 with others of the 3rd Canterbury Battalion who died on 22 November 1917.

Files 2