William’s birth to Charles and Mary Bilsborough was registered at Bingara in 1895. He was a twenty one year old married man when he enlisted at Inverell on 27 January 1916. He gave his occupation as Chauffeur and address as Allandale, Gum Flat, Inverell. He joined other Inverell district recruits who left Inverell together on 1 February, in between the First and Second Kurrajong contingents. Some of these men volunteered at the recruiting rally held in Inverell on 10 January, just before the departure of the First Kurrajongs.
William became a member of the 33rd Battalion, D Company which trained at Armidale and Rutherford NSW prior to sailing from Australia on HMAT A74 Marathon in May 1916. After arriving in England further training took place until the Battalion was sent to France in November. In July 1917 William was negligently wounded and invalided back to England where he was admitted to Bethnel Green Military Hospital with a gunshot wound to his arm. He returned to Australian in March 1918 and was medically discharged six months later. He died in Queensland in 1963.