Lt Donald Wishart (1884 – 1922)
Donald Wishart was born on 29 July 1884 at Broomhill in Urray, Ross & Cromarty, the fourth of eight children of William Wishart, a farm manager from Kirkhill, and his wife, Christina Cameron. By 1901 the family had returned to Kirkhill where they lived at Ladystone and young Donald had begun working as a law clerk. While in Inverness he also served in the 1st Volunteer Battalion, Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders, and in 1910 followed in his father’s footsteps and took up the job of estate agent at Burton Manor near Chester. He lived in the village at Church Farm and worked for businessman and politician Henry Neville Gladstone, who was also the son of four times Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone.
Shortly after taking up the new position Donald joined the Cheshire Yeomanry, however, on 13 May 1912 he was forced to purchase his discharge as he ‘could not afford the time to continue my military duties.’ On 20 May 1915, Donald made an application for a Commission in the Territorial Forces with a request to join the 2/4th Cameron Highlanders. Henry Gladstone certified Donald’s moral character and he was eventually gazetted Second Lieutenant with the 4th Battalion on 19 June 1915. Four months later he was gazetted temporary Lieutenant and then Lieutenant from 1 July 1917. At the time, he was attached to the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion and based in Invergordon until November 1917, when they moved to Ireland.
Donald was posted to France on 23 April 1918 and joined the 7th (Service) Battalion, Cameron Highlanders at Auchel two days later. His first experience of life in the trenches came on the night of the 10/11 May when the battalion took over the line near the Arras-Lens Road from the 10th Scottish Rifles. A month later, on 10 June, the 7th Battalion was amalgamated with the 6th and Donald made his way to join them along with a number of his fellow officers about 383 ranks. He would have seen his first action of the war in late July/early August and was appointed Assistant Adjutant on 8 August. At the end of September, Donald would have found himself based in the Loos Sector and took part in the final advance in Artois between 20 October and 11 November. News that the armistice had been signed was received by the battalion during a march from Baugnies to St. Anne (near Ellignies) and while passing through Willaupuis they were decorated with flowers and flags by the locals.
On 26 January 1919, the battalion marched past the Belgian King into Brussels. Donald was not among them and remained at Battalion Headquarters, southwest of the city in Braine-le-Comte, until February when he was given leave to the UK. During this time he returned to Inverness where he married Maggie Grant at Glentromie on Beaufort Road (her parent’s house) on the 27th. Returning to his unit shortly after the wedding, Donald remained in the Army until 3 May, when he received orders to make his way back to England for demobilisation.
Donald went back to work for Gladstone and died in Pancras, London on 28 January 1922. He was just 37-years-old and is buried in Tomnahurich Cemetery, Inverness.
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