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Alan Greveson's World War 1 Forum (Page 89)

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Posted by: Darrie Tighe {Email left}
Location: Edinburgh
Date: Saturday 8th June 2013 at 8:25 AM
My grandfather (deceased), served in burma during WW2, but according to my father, did not request his campaign medals. Would I be able to do so now?

Thank you.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Saturday 8th June 2013 at 11:28 AM

Dear Darrie,
The surviving next of kin would need to apply to the Ministry of Defence Medals Office in Gloucester using the forms the MoD provides on its website. The legal next of kin is the person who was the main beneficiary of the deceased serviceman's will. If they too are deceased, then the next of kin becomes the eldest child, eldest grandchild, brother or sister and so on. If you are not the next of kin, you can apply with the signed permission of the next of kin in the space provided on the kinship form. The forms are available at:
https://www.gov.uk/the-ministry-of-defence-medal-office
The MoD will also need proof of your grandfather's death, such as a copy of his death certificate with a completed medal application form (veterans) and a certificate of kinship. Details of his regiment(s) and service number are required as well as some details of his service which may be helpful in identifying where and when he served. If these are not known, ensure his date of birth is provided. The address of the Medals Office is: MoD Medal Office, Innsworth House, Imjin Barracks, Gloucester, England GL3 1HW
See also:
https://www.gov.uk/medals-campaigns-descriptions-and-eligibility#overview

Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Darrie Tighe
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 6:48 PM

Thanks Alan, I will have a look. But although I have his full name, date of birth and death certificate, I cannot find him in any search of the record sites, any ideas, until I do find his record, I can go no further.

Regards

Darrie
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 7:04 PM

Dear Darrie,
You don't have to have his service record to apply for his medals as the Medals Office will look at it to establish which medals he qualified for. His service record will not be found on any websites as it will be held securely by the UK MInistry of Defence and is still subject to the Data Protection Act. The MoD will charge you £30 to search for the service record, but there is no charge for applying for unclaimed medals. The MOD will release certain amounts of information about a deceased person depending on whether you are the direct next-of-kin, or not. You can apply for a search using the different application forms for next-of-kin, or with permission of next-of-kin, or as a general enquirer. See:

http://www.veterans-uk.info/service_records/service_records.html

Click on the link and then look for "Service records - requests for service records of deceased service personnel and home guard" in the left-hand column.
You will need proof of death (copy of death certificate); the soldier's date of birth or service number; and next-of-kin's signed permission (unless you are the direct next-of-kin), known as form Part 1. You then need a completed form Part 2 (search details), and cheque for payment. The next-of-kin form (Part 1) is for completion by the next-of-kin of deceased service personnel (or enquirers with the consent of next of kin). The Part 2 form is entitled: "Request forms for service personnel Army" A cheque for GBP 30 should be made payable to "The MOD Accounting Officer" and sent to Army Personnel Centre Secretariat, Disclosures 2, Mail Point 515, Kentigern House, 65, Brown Street, Glasgow G2 8EX Scotland with all the paperwork.

Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Darrie Tighe
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 7:14 PM

Thanks again Alan. I shall take it further.

Regards

Darrie
Posted by: Chris
Location: London
Date: Thursday 6th June 2013 at 11:01 AM
Dear Alan,

Could you please help me to find details for a family member who served with the 7th Battalion south Staffordshire Regiment in World War 1.

His name is George Moore, serial number 10608.

I would be grateful for any details.

Thank you.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Thursday 6th June 2013 at 7:57 PM

Dear Chris,
Unfortunately the only surviving record for Private George Moore, 10608, South Staffordshire Regiment appears to be an Army medal rolls index card which recorded he first served overseas in the Balkans from 21 July 1915. He was discharged on 26th March 1919. The card does not provide evidence of which battalion he served with, however, the date for embarkation in July 1915 does match the 7th Battalion which was formed in August 1914 at Lichfield. It trained at Grantham and Frensham, then sailed from Liverpool for Gallipoli where it landed on 7th August 1915. The Battalion served with the 33rd Infantry Brigade in the 11th Division and left Gallipoli for Imbros in December 1915. In February 1916 it was sent to Egypt before moving to France and Flanders in July 1916 where it remained until the Armistice. The engagements of the 11th Division can be seen at:
http://www.1914-1918.net/11div.htm
The battalion's war diary can be seen at The National Archives at Kew, Surrey, where it is in catalogue reference WO 95/1816.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Chris
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 9:13 AM

Dear Alan,

Thank you very much for taking the time to reply.

Does the medals card specify which medals were awarded to George? Also, would this discharge date be a standard post war date? I was told that George was wounded, and so did not know if possibly he was discharged at the same time as others who served.

Do you know why no further records exist?

Thank you very much again.

Regards
Chris
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 11:30 AM

Dear Chris,
George Moore qualified for the three campaign medals: The 1914-15 Star, for service overseas before December 31st 1915; the Victory Medal and the British War Medal. He may have been wounded but when he was discharged he was discharged to the Class Z Reserve which was the reserve of trained men who would be re-called if the Armistice did not hold, so it is probable that he was fit when he was discharged. Sixty-four per cent of wounded soldiers were returned to duty. The discharge date is a typical end-of-war date in early 1919. The records from the First World War were stored in a War Office building at Arnside Street in London. The building was destroyed by enemy bombing on September 8th 1940 and the majority of records were destroyed.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Chris
Date: Sunday 9th June 2013 at 5:54 PM

Dear Alan,

Thank you very much for that, and thanks again for taking the time to research and reply, I am happy to have found out a bit more about George Moore.

Best Regards

Chris
Posted by: Fiona Lord
Location: Alnwick
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 9:54 AM
Hi,
I am researching Alfred Barrs, birth registered 3rd quarter 1874. I know he was a Pioneer in the Royal Engineers Pigeon Service in WW1, No. 305147 but can find very little on what he actually did. He apparently died in France, but I don't know if he was killed in action, if so, which battle or if he died of wounds etc. Any help you can give would be most welcome.
Fiona
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 12:54 PM

Dear Fiona,
Is there a reason why so many people are asking me to research soldiers of Embleton?
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Fiona Lord
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 1:38 PM

Dear Alan,
I believe you have already been advised that there is a small group of people trying to research the names on the Embleton war memorial for the purpose of writing a booklet in their honour. We have tried every avenue we can think of to obtain information on them including searching many different sites online, visiting the Northumberland archives, the Northumberland Fusiliers Museum, contacting living relatives where we have been able to trace them and searching family treees on genealogy sites.

We have had some successes of our own, having managed to obtain photos of some of the men, their medals and various documents. However this has not been possible in all cases. For example, a relative of Alfred Barr's has told us that his grandson Alfie threw away all Alfred's war memorabilia and information when he moved from the family home. Unfortunately the service records of almost all the men appear to have been destroyed and a visit to the National Archives at Kew would be very expensive and time-consuming, being too far to travel there and do the necessary research in one day.

I apologise on behalf of the group if you are feeling beleagured by us, but you are such a wonderful mine of information and have given us so much help already, without which I doubt if we would have enough to see the project to fruition. I can only offer a huge vote of thanks to you on behalf of the group and hope that you will understand our plight and continue to help.
Regards, Fiona
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 8:17 PM

Dear Fiona,
Thank you for your explanation as to why the Embleton enquiries were coming from different people, because I hadn't realised how many people might be in the group.
Alfred ("Alf") Barrs enlisted at Newcastle upon Tyne on January 14th 1918 as a private soldier (pioneer) in the Royal Engineers and was shortly afterwards sent to France on 1st February 1918. I suspect it was a "special enlistment" where the man carried out his civilian skills, wearing a uniform, but was not expected to act as a trained combatant other than in self-defence. Pioneer was graded below the pay-band of "Sapper", the generic term for an engineer, as a Sapper had to pass trade tests to qualify for additional pay. Alf was aged 43 when he enlisted. It seemed likely that he was a pigeon-fancier at his home at Quarry House, Embleton, (1911) because his period of military training was only two weeks and the Carrier Pigeon Service relied on recruiting pigeon experts. Indeed, Alf raced and exhibited pigeons as "Alf Barrs, Christon Bank" of the Alnwick and District Homing Society and, for example, exhibited birds at the Annual Pigeon Show held at the Turk's Head Inn at Bedlington in 1902 where he received "very highly commended" for a racing cock bird. The Northumberland Federation was formed at the Blagden Arms Hotel, Cramlington on 22 October 1900 and within a decade it had 24 clubs. The racing season was between May and August each year. Old birds were flown from Doncaster at the start of the season and then Rennes in France at the end of their season in July. Younger birds then were flown from Doncaster, Nottingham, Rugby and Oxford in July and August. The annual shows were held out of season. Alf was commended for a bird that had flown more than 200 miles at the Federation annual show in Morpeth Town Hall in 1906. The Northumberland clubs were also affiliated to the Up North Combine, formed in 1905; the Northern Federation and the National Homing Union who helped organize the logistics of taking thousands of birds to Rennes in France by train, co-ordinating their release and then time-keeping. The Up North Combine has a website which published a short article on pigeons in wartime last month. See:
http://www.upnorthcombine.com/showthread.php?t=6125

There is some American film at a website called "Pigeons in Combat" http://www.pigeonsincombat.com/thepigeoneerswebpage.html

The official history of the British Corps of Royal Engineers Carrier Pigeon Service in the First World War was written by Lt-Col A.H. Osman and again published in 1976 as part of "Racing Pigeons in Two World Wars". He recollected: "From the inception of the service I impressed upon the authorities that to be a success the pigeons at their lofts must be in the hands of experts, and every man enlisted had to pass a strict examination as to his capacity as a fancier and trainer".
Alf Barrs died at Gezaincourt (Somme, France) as a result of "an accident sustained whilst on active service". His date of death was recorded as 18th September 1918 which suggests he was at either No. 3 Casualty Clearing Station (which was at Gezaincourt from March to September 1918) or No. 21 CCS which was there from September to October 1918. He was serving with "D" Signal Company Royal Engineers which I have been unable to identify although he was employed by the Carrier Pigeon Service which was operated by the Signals section of the Royal Engineers. The service was based on Pigeon Lofts attached to Signals units as Stationary, Motor Mobile, or Horse Drawn Mobile Lofts. There were also "Pigeon Stations" based forwards with the Infantry and "Mobile Pigeon Stations" with the Cavalry or tanks. The Lofts were where the Pigeons were normally kept and to which they homed. Stations were the points to which birds were taken and from where they were released, with messages, as required. All Lofts were under the Director of Army Signals, General Headquarters, B.E.F..
His cause of death should have been recorded on his death certificate which is GRO War Deaths Army Other Ranks (1914 to 1921) Barrs, Alfred, Royal Engineers, Pioneer, 305147, Year: 1918; volume: E2; page: 399.
Alfred was born at Rowley Regis in Staffordshire on 18th July 1874, the son of Joseph, a sett maker, and his wife Mary (Trumans). The family moved to Enderby in Leicestershire where Alfred attended school and became a shoe-hand when he left school. He moved to Embleton between the 1891 census and 1898 when he married. He became a whinstone sett maker and married, on November 13th 1898, Margaret Ann Appleby, daughter of Mark Appleby, of Stanley Terrace, Embleton, who was the boss's daughter, as the Appleby family owned and managed the Embleton quarry, (see my reply to Monica on June 1st). Mark Appleby, in 1891, was shown as a stone merchant and contractor of Grey's Inn, Embleton, next to the Post Office. Alf and Margaret had six children, Francis Alfred, born 28 November 1900; Margaret, born 19 August 1904; Leslie (male), born 7 August 1908; Joseph William, born 2 June 1910; Mary, Born 29 December 1912; and Hilda, born 18 May 1915.
Alf qualified for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Fiona Lord
Date: Wednesday 5th June 2013 at 10:35 AM

Dear Alan,
Many thanks once again for your very helpful information. Much appreciated.
Regards, Fiona
Posted by: Lenf {Email left}
Location: New Zealand
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 5:35 AM
Hi, I am looking for any information about my father's brother. His name was William Alphonso Frost. He was born in West Ham in 1888 and lived with Alphonso Turner, his grandfather, and an uncle until at least 1901. No other information about him turns up until1907, when my father enlisted with the 2nd. Essex Regiment and William Alphonso's name appears as an older brother in the section for next of kin. His address was given only as Royal Field Artillery.
I have tried researching his name with the National Archives and the only information I have is a Medal Index Card for a William A. Frost in the RFA. I am unable to find any other information relating to him. The information on the card shows an army service number for him of 41145 and he is attached to the 27th Bde(Brigade?) RFA with the rank of Corporal. Can anyone suggest where else I may be able to find any information firstly to verify him as my fathers brother and secondly where and when he was discharged.
Many thanks,
LenF.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 12:55 PM

Dear Len,
There is no obvious individual service record for William Alphonso Frost that identifies his being in the Royal Field Artillery. The medal rolls index card is simply an index card which carries not biographical information and therefore cannot be positively identified as relating to your ancestor as there were some 30 or more soldiers named William Frost in the Royal Artillery. If William was in the RFA in 1907, there is no guarantee he served with them continuously into the war. However, the card does indicate that the William A Frost 41145 was a regular soldier or a reservist because it showed he went to France with the BEF at the start of the war in August 1914. He does not appear immediately in the 1911 census, which included the army serving overseas. The 1911 census of Ireland recorded people in institutions only by their initials. There was a 23 year old soldier in the 15th Battery RFA recorded as W.A.(forenames) F.(surname) but there is no way of identifying him further. There is no military death record for William Frost, and, in fact, a William Alphonso Frost born 25th February 1888 died at Lincoln district in 1981. Most service records for soldiers who fought in the First World War were destroyed in a fire in 1940. If William had continued to serve as a regular army soldier after the war, his service record would still be held by the UK Ministry of Defence. The MOD will release certain amounts of information about a deceased person depending on whether you are the direct next-of-kin, or not. You can apply for a search using the different application forms for next-of-kin, or with permission of next-of-kin, or as a general enquirer. See:

http://www.veterans-uk.info/service_records/service_records.html

Click on the link and then look for "Service records - requests for service records of deceased service personnel and home guard" in the left-hand column.
You will need proof of death (copy of death certificate); the soldier's date of birth or service number; and next-of-kin's signed permission (unless you are the direct next-of-kin), known as form Part 1. You then need a completed form Part 2 (search details), and cheque for payment. The next-of-kin form (Part 1) is for completion by the next-of-kin of deceased service personnel (or enquirers with the consent of next of kin). The Part 2 form is entitled: "Request forms for service personnel Army" A cheque or money order for GBP 30 should be made payable to "The MOD Accounting Officer" and sent to Army Personnel Centre Secretariat, Disclosures 2, Mail Point 515, Kentigern House, 65, Brown Street, Glasgow G2 8EX Scotland with all the paperwork.

The 27th Brigade RFA (XXVII Brigade) served with the 5th Division throughout the war, although some of the brigade were taken prisoner during the Great Retreat from Mons at the very beginning of the war and remained as Prisoners of War in Germany, although it is not possible to state whether William was a prisoner or not without seeing a service record.

Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Lenf
Date: Wednesday 5th June 2013 at 8:53 AM

Dear Alan,
Thank you for your reply to my query. Unfortunately the only known relatives of William Alphonso are myself, my brother and a cousin in Australia. All of a different generation to him and with little or no knowledge of him at all.
I think it was really a long shot in hoping to find more information about him through his Medal Index Card and to try and prove relationship to someone that we cannot find anything definite on, apart from his name appearing on my father's enlistment papers, a longer shot still.
Many thanks,
LenF. .
Posted by: Lenf {Email left}
Location: New Zealand
Date: Tuesday 4th June 2013 at 5:34 AM
Hi, I am looking for any information about my father's brother. His name was William Alphonso Frost. He was born in West Ham in 1888 and lived with Alphonso Turner, his grandfather, and an uncle until at least 1901. No other information about him turns up until 1907, when my father enlisted with the 2nd. Essex Regiment and William Alphonso's name appears as an older brother in the section for next of kin. His address was given only as Royal Field Artillery.
I have tried researching his name with the National Archives and the only information I have is a Medal Index Card for a William A. Frost in the RFA. I am unable to find any other information relating to him. The information on the card shows an army service number for him of 41145 and he is attached to the 27th Bde(Brigade?) RFA with the rank of Corporal. Would that army number be consistent with being issued prior to 1907? Can anyone suggest where else I may be able to find any information firstly to verify him as my fathers brother and secondly where and when he was discharged.
Many thanks,
LenF.
Posted by: Gill Railton {Email left}
Location: Hull East Yorkshire
Date: Saturday 1st June 2013 at 10:28 PM
I am wondering if you are able to help me with another query, I am looking for information on Alexander Preston Waters who was born in Hull about 1895 , I have found a little about him , but would like to know where and how he died if possible.

Private Alexander P Waters.
12th Bn, East Yorkshire Regiment who died aged 22 on Thursday 3rd May 1917
Private Waters was the son of Mrs Kate Kingston of 51 Hedon Road, Hull.
Remembered with honour Arras Memorial, pas de Calais, France.
Grave reference.( Bay 4 and 5)ello Alla

Any help would be much appreciated.
Thank you
Gill Railton
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 3:21 PM

Dear Gill,
Alexander Waters enlisted on 30th September 1914 at the Central Hall, Hull, and joined the 12th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment (the 3rd Hull Pals). The battalion trained at Hornsea, Ripon and Salisbury Plain in England and was initially sent to Egypt, arriving on 23rd December 1915 but was moved to France at the end of February 1916 where it then served in the 92nd Infantry Brigade in the 33rd Division. The Division was engaged at The Battle of Albert on July 1st 1916; The Battle of Bazentin; The attacks on High Wood; The capture of Boritska and Dewdrop Trenches (1916) and The First Battle of the Scarpe and The Second Battle of the Scarpe. It is not clear precisely where the battalion was on 3rd May 1917 when Alexander was among 84 killed in the 12th Battalion. The war diary of the battalion can be downloaded from the National Archives website for a fee of £3.36. see:
http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/Details?uri=C4555508
Alexander was listed as "missing presumed dead". He was aged 22 when he was killed. He is commemorated on the Arras Memorial and has no marked grave. He qualified for the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. His medals would have automatically been sent to his mother, a widow who had re-married as Kate Kingston, of Hedon Road, Hull.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Gill Railton
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 7:52 PM

Dear Alan
Thank you for this information as usual you have come up with details I would never have been able to find on my own, what makes it more poignant is that his mother Kate Kingston lost her husband 2 weeks later on the 17th May when he was torpedoed in the North Sea.
I will be making a donation to your charity , once again a big thank you.
Best Wishes
Gill
Reply from: Gill Railton
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 8:47 PM

Hi Alan
Just one quick query, Was the 12th Battalion involved in the battle of Oppy Wood on the 3rd May 1917?
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 9:02 PM

Dear Gill,
Oppy Wood was contested from April to the end of June 1917 and 92nd Brigade was involved in fighting at Oppy Wood on May 3rd but as I don't have the 12th Battalion's war diary I cannot be specific about their involvement. But yes, 12th Battalion was there.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Gill Railton
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 10:55 PM

Thank you Alan
Much appreciated
Best Wishes
Gill
Posted by: Monica {Email left}
Location: Alnwick
Date: Saturday 1st June 2013 at 7:45 PM
Dear Alan
I am trying to find out more about John Luke who was killed in World War I. I know he was born in 1894 and was a Corporal in the Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment). His number was 9214 and he was killed on 5th November 1916 probably during the Somme offensive. Anything you can tell me about his military career and death would be gratefully received.
Thanks Monica
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 3:07 PM

Dear Monica,
There were three men named John Luke whose births had been registered in Alnwick in 1893-1894. The John Luke who was killed on 5th November 1916 was recorded in the CWGC Debt of Honour as the son of John and Isabella C[owan] Luke, of Embleton. John Luke junior was baptised at Embleton on 4th February 1894, the son of John and Isabella. John Luke senior had worked as a carter and the family lived at Post Office Buildings, Embleton, in 1901. Isabella was the village sub-postmistress, as recorded in the 1911 census. John senior died in 1905 and John, the son, became the male breadwinner of the family of eight children, working in a whinstone quarry, recorded at the age of 17 in the 1911 census with his mother the postmistress and seven siblings. Whinstone was used for making paving setts ("cobbled streets") that were in great demand for paving between tram-lines in the developing cities of the Edwardian and post-Edwardian period. The outdoor work was regulated by the weather: long days in summer; short days in winter and the men, who worked in gangs, were paid by the ton of stone hewn. The quarry was owned by the Appleby family and perhaps their most famous customer was the first Mersey road tunnel (1934) which was paved with Whinstone from Embleton.
No individual service record has survived for John Luke so it is not possible to state his army service in detail. Corporal John Luke's regimental number was prefixed with PS which stood for the Public School battalions of the Royal Fusiliers. These were numbered the 18th, 19th, 20th and 21st Battalions Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment). Yet when he died, Corporal Luke was serving with the 22nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment). He qualified for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. As he did not qualify for the 1914-15 Star for service overseas before December 31st 1915, he did not go abroad until some date after January 1st 1916. According to "Soldiers Died in the Great War", he had enlisted at Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
The 18th and 20th Battalions had been sent to France in November 1915. The 19th and 21st Battalions had been disbanded in England in April 1916 and the men dispersed. It is therefore feasible that John Luke had joined either the 19th or 21st Battalion, both of which were raised at Epsom in September 1914, before he was sent to France as part of a draft of reinforcements in 1916 where he would have been posted to the 22nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers. The 22nd Battalion was raised at Kensington and served with the 99th Infantry Brigade with the 2nd Division in France from November 1915. In 1916, the 2nd Division fought at The Battle of Delville Wood (15 July - 3 September 1916); The Battle of the Ancre (1318 November 1916); and the Operations on the Ancre.
Corporal Luke was the only man of his battalion to be killed on November 5th 1916. The Battalion had spent three days resting in billets in Mailly-Maillet, on the Ancre, having been relieved in the trenches by the 1st Battalion Princess Charlotte of Wales's Royal Berkshire Regiment. On November 5th 1916 the two battalions exchanged places and the 22nd Royal Fusiliers relieved the 1st Royal Berkshires in the left section of the Redan sub-sector which was half way between Serre and Beaumont-Hamel in what were known as Beaumont Trench and Serre Trench, which faced the German front line, called Munich Trench.
John probably was just unlucky, to be the one man killed during the relief. He was buried in the original plot of the Euston Road Cemetery at Colincamps. John's youngest brother, Andrew Luke, was a footman for the Craster Family at Craster Towers. He served in the Royal Engineers from October 1915 and survived the war, qualifying for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. He had another brother, George Luke, whose military record has not yet been identified.

John's father (John Luke, born 1865, the son of Thomas, a quarryman, and Elizabeth) had a younger sister named Elizabeth, born 1870.
She lived with her widowed mother, Elizabeth Luke, at Front Street, and when she was 21 she had a son, Herbert Luke, who was baptised on 27th July 1890 at Embleton, to a single mother, Elizabeth Luke. Herbert Luke worked at the whinstone quarry and enlisted at Newcastle in the 22nd Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers (3rd Tyneside Scottish) which was raised in Newcastle in November 1914 and then trained at Alnwick between March and August 1915, when it moved to Salisbury Plain. The Battalion was sent to France in January 1916 and served in the 102nd Infantry Brigade in the 34th Division. Private Herbert Luke, 22/739, was killed in action on July 1st 1916, aged 26. The 34th Division was engaged in the Battle of Albert on July 1st 1916 including the capture of Scots and Sausage Redoubts on the opening day of The Battles of the Somme. The battalion reported 160 dead on July 1st 1916. Herbert has no marked grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the missing of the Somme. He qualified for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Monica
Date: Saturday 8th June 2013 at 11:36 PM

Thank you for your help. I wonder why the City of London regiment were recruiting in Newcastle?
Posted by: Steve
Location: Liverpool
Date: Saturday 1st June 2013 at 3:59 PM
Hi alan love this site your knowledge always amazes me, looking for information on George Dodgson 9619 the kings liverpool. kia 03/11/1914 born liverpool 1890. where did he enlist,how was he killed. might have been a career soldier. regards steve.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Saturday 1st June 2013 at 9:14 PM

Dear Steve,
No individual service record has survived for George Dodgson so it is not possible to state his service in detail. "Soldiers Died in the Great War" confirmed that he was "killed in action" on 3rd November 1914 while serving as a private soldier, 9619, with the 1st Battalion The King's (Liverpool Regiment). An Army medal rolls index card showed he qualified for the 1914 Star with Mons clasp, but was recorded at A. Dodgson, 9619. He had entered a theatre of war (France) on August 13th 1914. A second index card for George Dodgson 9619 recorded his qualification for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. The medals would have been automatically sent to his parents, George and Mary Dodgson, if they were still living in the 1920s, or to his next-of-kin (and older brother, William). The Commonwealth War Graves Commission Debt of Honour recorded that George is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial at Ypres which indicates that he has no marked grave.
The 1st Battalion The King's (Liverpool Regiment) was in the 6th Infantry Brigade in the 2nd Division. The British Expeditionary Force in 1914 fought at The Battle of Mons and the Great Retreat, The Battle of the Marne; The Battle of the Aisne including the Actions on the Aisne heights and then The First Battle of Ypres. On the day George was listed as killed, the 6th Brigade was defending the line four miles from Ypres in the area of Gheluvelt. The Germans had attacked here on 31st October and taken part of the British line before being repulsed in a counter attack by the 2nd Worcestershires. On 2nd November the Germans attacked again and the 6th Brigade had a major battle on its hands to repair a breach in the line, suffering severe casualties. There was some enemy shelling on the 3rd November, so it is likely George was killed on the night of the 2nd and was listed as killed when he did not answer his name at roll-call on 3rd November.
Prior to serving with the 1st Battalion in 1914, George Dodgson had served with the 2nd Battalion The King's which was on garrison duties in India. He was shown in the 1911 census as being based at Ambala in the Punjab. He would have enlisted at the age of 18. His birth was registered at West Derby, Liverpool, in July-Sept 1888. The West Derby, Liverpool, registration district included Kirkdale, where George stated he was born. A brief service record for his initial enlistment in the Militia is available to download from the findmypast.co.uk website (charges apply; 40 credits required). I am unable to transcribe information from that website for copyright reasons. Service in the Militia was for a few months' full-time training followed by part-time service. Militia enlistment gave young men a chance to see if they were suited to the Army life. Those who then joined the Regulars from the Militia received a bounty of £10 which was a worthwhile incentive. There is no record of his having served in the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899 1902). There is no record of when George left India (the 2nd Battalion remained there) but he could have been transferred to the reserves after a minimum seven years' service (1913) returning to the UK in the trooping season which would have been the winter months of 1913/1914, suggesting that George was in the UK when war was declared and he was probably called up as a reservist on August 5th 1914 to go abroad with the 1st Battalion in August 1914. The original war diary of the battalion is only available at The National Archives at Kew: "WO 95/1359 6 Infantry Brigade: 1 Battalion King's Liverpool Regiment". However, copies are held at the regimental museum which is within The Museum of Liverpool, Pier Head, Liverpool. See:
http://www.armymuseums.org.uk/museums/0000000056-King-s-Regiment-Museum-Collection.htm
and
http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/mol/visit/galleries/soldiers/

Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Steve
Date: Sunday 2nd June 2013 at 11:39 AM

Thanks alan for a quick response, your knowledge is fantastic. best wishes steve.
Reply from: Joanne
Date: Wednesday 17th December 2014 at 4:14 PM

I too are interested in a George Dodgson from this regiment who died at the end of 1914. He was my Great Great Grandfarther. My George was 'married' to a Agnes Gardnier from West Derby. When George went off to battle in august 1914 Agnes was with child and a baby girl was born late August 1914,the story goes a letter was sent to George but he never got it as it was returned home unopened. I wonder if they are one of the same. But you mention no wife in the next to kin on the records. Could it be that the army records had not been changed from previous (his return from India) prior to reenlisting. If it is the same person then they must have 'married' very soon after his return from India by my calcualtions. I would appreciate if we could establish whether these two Georges are one of the same. My youngest daughter is due to go on a history trip to Ypres and it would be nice if we have established that the George listed on the memorial is actually her Great Great Great Grandfather. Many thanks
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Wednesday 17th December 2014 at 6:21 PM

Dear Joanne,
The two Georges appear to be the same. The one mentioned above was the son of George J. and Mary Dodgson. He had an older brother, William. The family lived at 124 Rosalind Street, Liverpool, as recorded in the 1901 census. George J. Dodgson was recorded in 1901 as being a pavior (road labourer). George enlisted in 1906. In the 1911 census for this family, George was listed as being in India, but the entry had correctly been struck through, because George was at Ambala, Punjab, India and was listed in the Army census with his regiment.
The reason there was no mention of a wife in the answer above is that I had identified George in the 1901 census; and his 1906 enlistment; working backwards from his 1911 census entry with his regiment in India. I had not looked for a marriage.
The GRO marriage index showed a George Dodgson married Agnes Gardiner at West Derby, Liverpool, in the October - December quarter of 1913. This marriage took place at St Philip's Church Liverpool, on 23rd October 1913. George was recorded as a 25 year old bachelor employed as a paver. His father was recorded as George John Dodgson, paver. Paver and Pavior were the same occupation. A William Gardiner was a witness to the marriage. Could he have been George's older brother as best man and witness?
It would appear George had left the Army to be married and subsequently would have been called-up as an army reservist in August 1914 when war was declared. An Agnes G. Dodgson (mother's maiden name Gardiner) was born in the July - September quarter of 1914 and the birth was registered at West Derby, Liverpool. (George would surely have known about the birth of the girl as letters only took a day or two to reach France and he was killed in November. It is possible some other letter was returned after his death).
No individual service record from the First World War has survived for George Dodgson. Had it done so, it would have shown George was married. His medals therefore would have been sent to his widow.
"Soldiers Died in the Great War" (HMSO 1921) records only two men named George Dodgson who were killed in the Great War. One was the George from Kirkdale, Liverpool, who was killed on 3rd November 1914. The other was killed in 1916 and was named George Greenwood Dodgson.
The weight of evidence is compelling that the George Dodgson described above is the same George Dodgson as your great-great-grandfather.
With kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Joanne
Date: Thursday 18th December 2014 at 12:01 PM

Thank you for your rapid response. And explanation. I have sent for my nannie birth certificate to check dates. The family always celebrate her birthday at the end of August and I couldn't understand why there story is told that he didn't know. It will be interesting to see the dates. Families have some very strange secrets. I wondered who the person was that contacted you about this originally. I am told that the child was brought up by her mothers parents and never had anything to do with her fathers side of the family. thank you again Jo Shone
Posted by: Mike {Email left}
Location: Wellington
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 5:09 PM
Hello again Alan,

6633 Pte Joseph Edgar Griffiths - 3rd Battalion 6th North Staffordshire Regiment

After all the help you gave me regarding my wife's grandfather Arthur James Bennett I now have a new query which I hope you can assist me with.
My maternal grandfather, Joseph Edgar Griffiths served in the North Staffordshire Regiment and enlisted towards the end of 1915 or early 1916 - His service records cannot be found on Ancestry and are presumably amongst the 'burnt records'.
I know from his marriage certificate of 27 Dec 1915 that he was at that time a 'house painter' but by the time of the birth of his first child on 22 Apr 1916 the certificate states that he is now Private 4971 of 3rd Battalion North Staffs Regt.
I could find no medal card for Pte 4971 J E Griffiths of the North Staffordshire Regiment but did find one or two others. My cousin, the daughter of JEG's eldest child had her father's WW2 Medals and she hadn't realised until this query arose that two of them were actually our grandfathers WW1 Medals - British War & Victory - with the former having '6633 Pte J E Griffiths N Staff R' engraved around it and which tied in perfectly with one of the Medal Cards found.
The medal card gives Regt No 6633 but also No 242306 which I am assuming is the number that he would have been given upon attestation/enlistment prior to joining or being called up to his unit. This now begs a question - if he was No 4971 in 3rd Battalion 6th North Staffs Regt in April 1916 how would he then have become No 6633 still in the North Staffs Regt (although his then battalion is not known) as I was under the impression that Regt No's only changed upon changing regiments.
Without the records is there - Any way of approximating when he enlisted/attested - presumably this could have been prior to his marriage as he would still be giving his occupation on the marriage certificate if he had not been called up at that time - or when he might have been called up and discharged?
Would you know where his regiment would have been serving from early 1916 and/or what would you recommend that I read to gain an insight?
Thank you once again for your help in previous posts and I hope that you are able to shed a little light on this new subject.
Very best wishes,
Mike Price
Reply from: Mike
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 5:25 PM

Hello Alan

Addendum to Joseph Edgar Griffiths

I should have included in my post that he was born and lived in Hanley, Stoke on Trent which may be of some help.

Regards, Mike Price
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 9:34 PM

Dear Mike,
If you think the ASC was complicated, the "3rd Battalion 6th North Staffs Regt" is equally unhelpful.
The 3rd Battalion of any regiment was the UK-based regular army and militia depot as well as an administrative battalion controlled by the War Office which had its own regimental numbering system. By administrative battalion was meant that for pay and allowances a soldier could be "on the strength" of the 3rd Battalion even if he were in hospital or awaiting a posting. He didn't have to actually reside at the Depot. There was no such designation as "3rd Battalion 6th North Staffs Regt". He would have been in either the 3rd Battalion or the 6th Battalion. Or he could have been in the 3rd/6th ("Third Sixth") Battalion (see below) before being posted overseas. In April 1916 it appears Joseph Griffiths was on the books of the regimental depot, which was the 3rd Battalion who numbered him 4971. At some stage he was posted to the "6th Battalion" which was a Territorial battalion that was administered by the County Territorial Association which had its own numbering system. When he joined that battalion he was allotted the number 6633 which was changed to a new number 242306 when the system was revised throughout the Territorial Force in January and February 1917. The number 242306 in the North Staffordshire Regiment was within a series allocated to the 6th Battalion in 1917, so it would appear the number 6633 was also in the 6th Battalion. As no individual service record has survived for Joseph Griffiths it is not possible to state his service. (The "burnt documents" are the documents that have survived, but are fire damaged, in National Archives series WO363).
There were three separate battalions with the designation "6th Battalion" The Prince of Wales's (North Staffordshire Regiment). The original 1st/6th Battalion existed before the war and went to France in March 1915; then to Egypt briefly in 1916 before returning to France and Belgium. The regiment recruited the 2nd/6th Battalion in November 1914 which served in England, Ireland and, from February 1917, France. The 3rd/6th Battalion was formed in May 1915 and remained in England to supply drafts for casualty replacements to the first two 6th Battalions. Before researching Joseph you would need to establish in which of the 1st/6th and the 2nd/6th Battalions he served as the two battalions had quite separate identities.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Mike
Date: Friday 31st May 2013 at 3:06 PM

Thank you so much Alan - I can't believe how quickly you have responded.

The information you have provided is first class giving us a great insight into Granddad Griffiths' WW1 service - we knew absolutely nothing before but your reply has given us other routes we can now explore.

There is a copy of his eldest daughter's birth certificate in the post to me which mentions the "Private 4971 3rd Battalion 6th North Staffs Regt" (which is how she put it to me over the phone last week) - so will be able to check the information when it arrives - it is probably 3rd/6th Battalion as you have indicated.

Another cousin, the eldest daughter of JEG's second child may possibly have some of his personal papers as he passed away at her mother's home in 1971 - she is going to check a trunk in her spare room - who knows maybe his discharge papers are there!

Will keep you posted if I find anything more.

Very best wishes and gratefully yours

Mike Price
Posted by: Jonboy {Email left}
Location: Harlow Essex England
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 3:50 PM
Hi Alan
This realy is a long shot but worth a try.William Elford Born 1900 Edmonton.
He was adopted by Henry Hickson and Caroline Marrable.Havent a clue
who his real parents were (i would love to know to help in my research).the
only info i have been given is its possible he was in the Middx Regiment and
No : 293115.I am not sure if its right or not but its worth a try.
Kind regards
Jonboy
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 8:31 PM

Dear Jonboy,
The birth of a William Elford was registered at Edmonton in the last quarter of 1900 (Middlesex vol 3a page 492.) The birth certificate should say who his parents or, at least, mother was. The Medal Index card for Middlesex Regiment 293115 is for a William E. Elford. As William Elford was born late in 1900 he would have been 13 when war was declared in August 1914 which makes him less likely to have served in the First World War.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Jonboy
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 9:10 PM

Hi Alan
Thanks for trying for me,ill order a Birth Certificate on line tonight.By the way there seems to be letters
sent to you in my name as Jonboy but nothing to with me,whats happened there ?

Regards
Jonboy
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Thursday 30th May 2013 at 9:38 PM

Dear Jonboy,
Yes, it looks confusing but the other is "Johnboy" with an "h" from "London" not Harlow. Had me surprised for a moment, but don't worry, I know you too well!
Kind regards,
Alan

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