VAD Doris Varley

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Doris Varley


Doris Varley was the middle of three children born to William Sagar and Martha Alice Varley. She was born on 2nd July 1896 and baptised 26th August of that year at Ingrow, Keighley.

Doris Varley's baptism record

She had an older brother, Frederick William, and younger sister, Annie.

In 1901 they lived at Green Bank in Utley, which I believe was on Greenhead Lane. Her father William, originally from Earby, was a washing machine manufacturer. Frederick, who was 11 years older than Doris, was not at the address and may have been at boarding school.

In 1911 the family remained at this address and Frederick was at home, working as a mechanic. Doris and Annie, 14 and 11 years old, were still at school.

Doris worked as a relief nurse at Spencer Street Auxiliary Hospital from 23rd May 1917 until at least December 1919, working fours per day, a total of 1800 hours at the point of the VAD record completion. I believe that her brother fought during the war, having found a couple of military records in his name but have no confirmation.

She married in 1923 in Lancaster, to Demain Smith of Skipton, and they had one daughter, Audrey. This was Demain's second marriage, having been widowed at young age. He had been a paymaster, sub-lieutenant in the Royal Naval Reserve. I believe they stayed in the East Lancashire area for their married lives.

In 1939 Demain and Doris lived at 14 Woodville Road in Brierfield, Demain was working as a bank manager. Doris was not working but the register indicates she again volunteered as a nurse at Reedyford Hospital during the Second World War.

Doris Smith nee Varley on the 1939 Register

Demain Smith died on 9th January 1953 and was buried at Earby Cemetery, and Doris died in 1990, her death registered in Staincliffe.


England and Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915

West Yorkshire, England, Church of England Births and Baptisms, 1813-1935

1901 England Census

1911 England Census

England and Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1916-2005

UK, British Army WW1 Medal Roll Index Cards

1939 England and Wales Register

England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007


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