Local Tunneller – Lieutenant William Charles Gilbert, 15th Field Company, Australian Engineers (348), was born in Ballarat East in 1888.
He listed his trade as a well borer and a 7 year apprenticeship with the Phoenix Company in Ballarat. He enlisted on 12 July 1915 at the age of 27
and returned to Australia in 1919.
In June 1918 he received a Military Cross ‘For conspicuous gallantry and untiring devotion to duty. From 29th September to 1st October 1918,
in the vicinity of Bellicourt and Estrees, he repeatedly carried out forward reconnaissances under continuous shell fire, and obtained valuable information
on location and condition of wells, roads, cellars and dug-outs, and furnished the first reconnaissance reports of the captured portion of the Bellicourt Tunnel.’
(As mentioned in the London Gazette).
More on Tunneller Gilbert (who also enlisted in WW2) can be found via Tunnellers.net: