Bridge of Weir

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406145 Sapper David Robertson Tod

51st Signal Company, 154th Brigade, Royal Engineers

killed in action 6th April 1917

aged 26

Anzin-St Aubin British Cemetery
St Machar's Church Memorial, Bridge of Weir
Kilbarchan Cemetery

Son of James Tod and Joan Robertson
Ladebank Terrace, Bridge of Weir

His Life

David Robertson Tod was born on 30th April 1890 in Bridge of Weir, the youngest of a family of four born to James Tod, a joiner from Falkland, Fife and Joan Robertson from Largo, Fife, who had married in Kelvin, Glasgow on 25th January 1884.

In 1891 James (40), Joanna (37), and their four young children James, Annabella, Catherine and David were living in Burnbrae Cottage, Bridge of Weir. James senior was a joiner.

In 1901 the Tod family of five was living in Kirkinner Place, Bridge of Weir. By then James junior was an apprentice joiner. John Wattie (22), a police constable, was boarding with the family. Annabella had died the year before at the age of 14.

In 1911, James, Joan, Catherine and David were living in a 3-roomed flat in Ladebank Terrace, Bridge of Weir. Catherine was a dressmaker and David (20) a currier in a leather works. William F Houston (28), a joiner from Bishopton, (destined to be another war casualty) was boarding. James junior was no longer in the family home.

Private David R Tod enlisted on 15th August 1914, one of the earliest to volunteer in Bridge of Weir, and was enrolled with the Royal Engineers with regimental number 537. By December he had been attached to Signals Company of the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders, 51st Highland Division (as number 1820). His final number was allocated when he re-joined the Royal Engineers. He first joined the theatre of war on 1st May 1915. In June 1915, he was injured by a shell-burst but survived.

He died on 6th April 1917, with five others (according to newpaper reports - although only two other fatalities are identified in his Unit War Diary, it is possible that other fatalities were brigade or divisional troops), when repairing a telephone in a dug-out that suffered a direct hit from a shell, three days before the launch of the Arras Offensive. He is buried in the Anzin-St Aubin British Cemetery in the northern outskirts of Arras. The 51st Division were to play a key part in the capture of Vimy Ridge at the Battle of Arras .

Vimy Ridge, Arras

The field of battle where David Tod was killed by a direct hit on a dug-out in Roclincourt before the Battle of Arras.


1891 Census 1901 Census 1911 Census Birthplace
Name Age Name Age Name Age
James6 James16 Maryhill, Dunbartonshire
Annabella4 Kilmacolm, Renfrewshire
Cath T3 Catherine12Catherine T23 Bridge of Weir
David R11 moDavid11David R20Bridge of Weir


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