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Norah Ward

Norah WardNorah Ward - Nurse

No information has been located to determine where Nora Ward undertook her nursing service during WW1. There is also some uncertainty regarding whether what follows is the history of the Nora Ward in the photograph or whether it is another woman of the same name.

What is known is that Nora Ward in the photograph was a resident of Ossett at the time of WW1 and research has only identified one woman of that name living in Ossett. What follows is her story.

Norah Ward was born in Ossett on the 14th September 1890, the daughter of Herbert Ward, mungo manufacturer of South Ossett, and his wife Edith (nee Brown) who married at Ossett Holy Trinity Church on the 14th December 1887 . Norah was baptised at the same church on the 12th October 1890 and was to be the only girl of six surviving children born to the couple.

In 1891, aged 6 months, Norah was living with her parents and her 2 year-old elder brother, George, at the Flying Horse Public House, Streetside, Ossett. Norah’s father was a rag merchant and the Flying Horse was run by Norah’s grandmother and her step grandfather, George Spencer.

By 1901, Herbert Ward and his wife Edith, now with four children, George H. (born 1889), Norah (1890), Harry (1894) and Edgar (1898) had moved to Westfield Terrace, Ossett. Herbert was in the rag trade, the son of Isiah Ward, rag merchant of Prospect Road, Ossett suggesting the family may have had some wealth.

Sadly Herbert Ward died in late Summer 1904 aged 40, leaving his wife Edith aged 41, pregnant with their 6th child, Donald, and five children aged between 1 and 15 years old. The fifth child, Sidney, was born in 1903. The couple had another child who died before 1911. Norah was the only girl of the six children. In 1911, widow Edith and her six children were living at their five-roomed home at 24, Westfield Street, Ossett and the two eldest boys were working in the rag trade. Norah had no occupation.

A biography of Mrs Susannah Campbell also appears elsewhere in this section of the website. Her Ossett address was 45, Westfield Street, which is situated almost opposite Nora Ward’s home address at 24, Westfield Street. It is quite possible that the two knew one another and perhaps worked in the same hospital?

Army service records have not survived for any of Nora’s brothers, who were of an age to serve in WW1, but it seems likely that they would have volunteered or been called up to serve.

On the 10th August 1921 at the Congregational Church, The Green, Ossett, Nora Ward, aged 30, married Albert Edward Preston, aged 24, a motor engineer. Both gave their address as 24, Westfield Street. In Spring 1922, a girl, Joan, was born with the surname Preston to a mother whose maiden name was Ward. In Spring 1924 in similar circumstances another girl, Sheila Preston, was born. No army service record has survived for Albert Edward Preston, but he was of an age where he would have been expected to serve in the armed forces.

Unfortunately, service records for nurses in service during WW1 are incomplete, but Nora Ward does not appear in those which are available online. It is, however, quite possible that her records do exist, but have not yet been made available online.