Billy Lowe's parents, Thomas and Elizabeth, had originated from the Merseyside area and Billy was born in Birkenhead in late 1880. The family had been living in the Stockport area for some considerable time before the Great War and their home was at 2 Grange Avenue, Heaton Chapel and, later, Oak Avenue, Heaton Moor. Elizabeth Lowe is believed to have died, aged 50, in 1900.
When the Census was taken in 1901, William was listed as being the head of the household at Grange Avenue. Also living there were his three older sisters - Harriett, Beatrice and Nellie. An examination of the Census shows that their father was resident in the local workhouse. As there was good income coming into the home from the three children who were working, this is unlikely to have been for reasons of poverty. It is more likely that Thomas was ill and needed to be institutionalised for proper care. He died two years later, aged 59. His death is registered in the Warrington area.
Billy had worked for the Midland Railway Company at Stockport since 1896 and, by 1914, had risen to the position of Assistant Chief Clerk. He was a keen lacrosse player and had captained the Heaton Mersey team. He had also played, in defence, for Lancashire and the North of England. His last appearance before the War had been in the "local derby match" where he had captained Lancashire to victory against Cheshire. He was also a member of the Committee of the North of England Association.
Also in his spare time, Billy was a long-standing member of the Territorial Force and was mobilised with the rest of the Battalion when War was declared. Some details of their early months of service are here. After spending several months in Egypt, the Battalion was ready to go into action and, in early May, left for the Gallipoli peninsula. Inside a month, Billy would be dead, killed in this attack. His body was never found and recovered.