WIGHTMAN, Peter Rigby

Service Number: 8398
Enlisted: 8 September 1915
Last Rank: Lieutenant
Last Unit: General List
Born: Norwood, South Australia, 5 November 1893
Home Town: St Peters, Norwood Payneham St Peters, South Australia
Schooling: School of Mines
Occupation: Surveyor and draughtsman
Died: Illness, Sydney, NSW, Australia, 8 October 1938, aged 44 years
Cemetery: Rookwood Cemetery & Crematorium
Ashes placed in Garden of Remembrance
Memorials: SA Caledonian Society Soldiers Memorial WW1 Honour Board
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World War 1 Service

8 Sep 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Gunner
22 Nov 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Gunner, SN 8398, 6th Field Artillery Brigade
22 Nov 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Gunner, SN 8398, 6th Field Artillery Brigade , HMAT Persic, Melbourne
24 Jul 1919: Promoted AIF WW1, Lieutenant, Australian Topographical Section
22 Aug 1920: Discharged AIF WW1, Lieutenant, SN 8398, General List

Help us honour Peter Rigby Wightman's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Robert Kearney

Mr. Peter Rigby Wightman was one of the leading map draughtsmen, of the A.l.F. An artilleryman he had served at Pozieres wlth his battery, the 18th, in its dangerous position in Mash Valley, and the experience left its mark on him. He had been trained in Adelaide, his native city, as a survey draughtsman, and after Pozieres he was transferred to 1st Anzac Headquarters, working on maps mainly for the intelligence branch of General Birdwood's staff.
It was he who, after the underground German fortress of Mouquet Farm had been taken, was detailed by his chief Colonel S. S. Bulter, a famous intelligence officer, to survey and map the dugouts and galleries there. For his work on maps, which were required daily in large numbers for the battlefield and, kept busy a large staff, he received the Meritorious Service Medal.
Towards Ihe end of 1917. he was transferredl to the then newly-formed war records section in London, becoming officer-in-charge of the map branch; from there, in 1919, he was brought back lo Australia to produce the maps for the official history of the war.
He was mainly responsible for the 500 maps and sketches, whlch, when published in the first two volumes, drew favourable comment from reviewers in every part of the Empire and in some foreign countries.
But his llifelong devotion was to engineering. in which he qualified himself by intense study in his spare lime when on the historian staff at Tuggranong near Canberra, and afterwards when serving with the Main Road
Board,which he next joined in 1925. He was eventually appointed assistant engineer at Wagga. He was keenly interested in parks and recreation areas, and later, as acting engineer at Granville, was responsible for devising the scheme under whlch employ-
ment relief funds were expended largely in improving the much-needcd recreation spaces here. His appointment as engineer for Parramatta brought him to a municipality famous for its parks.

MR. P. R. WIGHTMAN. (1938, October 10). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 12. Retrieved December 11, 2018, from


Biography contributed by Elizabeth Allen

Peter Rigby WIGHTMAN was born in Norwood, South Australia on 5th November, 1893

His parents were David WIGHTMAN & Bessie RIGBY

He married Henrietta Adelaide WINCHCOMBE in London in 1919 and returned to Australia - discharged 22nd August, 1920

He died of a sudden illness in Sydney on 8th October, 1938 & was cremated at Rookwood Crematorium - his name is honoured on his parents headstone in Payenham Cemetery in South Australia