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

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Posted by: Leyther1 {Email left}
Location: Leigh
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 1:43 PM
Dear Alan
You have helped me a couple of times recently and I have been extremely grateful and made sure I have donated to the Legion :) ...would you be able to help me again please?

I have located the records of William David Dorricott, b. 1833 Shropshire on Ancestry (his records show twice and both records have some different info in there). His number looks like RTS2100. I have tried to trace his "story" during WW1 but as I have zero knowledge, would you be able to explain his movements in better detail like you have with some previous anscestors of mine please? The way you have done it in the past for me has been brilliant and I have understood the action / campaigns / medals - even times at home inbetween, much much easier. I thought I could see that he stayed with the army after the war? I can see you have a few enquiries on the go at the moment, so appreciate you have limited time, but if you could spare any time to have a look at this records for me it would be great.

Thanks in advance
Leyther1
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 5:10 PM

Dear Leyther,
William David Dorricott was especially enlisted into the Army Service Corps because of his skill with horses. In the 1911 census he was recorded as a stableman in the domestic service of Eaton Hall, Cheshire, home of the Duke of Westminster. He lived at the stables at the Hall. He married in 1913 and at the outbreak of war, employed as a stud-groom, he enlisted in the Army Service Corps on 21st September 1914 in London where he joined the ASC Remount Service for the duration of the war. He was aged 31; 5ft 5ins tall; had a pale complexion; blue eyes and greyish hair. His enlistment was approved at Woolwich on September 23rd 1914. Woolwich had been the traditional home of the Remount Service in England since 1891. The Remount Service provided and trained horses and mules for the Army. In September 1914, the No 2 Base Remount Depot was established at Rouen to supply remounts for the British Expeditionary Force and William was appointed a foreman Corporal there, arriving on September 24th 1914. The depot's horses arrived two days later. The brief time between his enlistment and arrival in France indicates the nature of his special enlistment as did his regimental number RTS 2100 where the RTS stood for Remount Transport Specials. He was undertaking his skilled civilian job in uniform on active service, although he was technically serving in a non-combatant arm of the service. He was promoted to acting-Sergeant on 23rd October 1914 and to Sergeant on 6 December 1914. He remained at Rouen with No 2 Base Remount Depot (2/BRD ASC) until 7th April 1916. He had been granted leave between 28th September and 6th October 1915. On April 4th 1916 he was admitted to No 2 General Hospital, which was at Le Havre as "NYD" which stood for Not Yet Diagnosed on admission, but which the soldiers said stood for "Not Yet Dead". He was suffering from arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and was transferred to the UK on 15th April 1916 on the Hospital Ship "Western Australia". He was treated at Perth, Scotland, at the city infirmary and the Rosebank Auxiliary Hospital, Perth, between 17th April and 22nd May 1916. He was passed fit for light duties and overseas duties within three months. On July 1st 1916 he returned to France aboard SS "Courtfield" sailing from Southampton to Le Havre and re-joined the No 2 BRD at Rouen. On 15th September 1916 he was admitted to hospital in France and re-joined his unit on 1st October 1916. He was then returned to England on 5th October 1916 aboard SS "Princess Alexandria" via Southampton. On October 6th 1916, he was posted to the Remount Depot at Ormskirk in Lancashire. This would have been in the grounds of Lathom Park, a stately home near Ormskirk. See:
http://lbmhs.co.uk/remount-history

His return to the UK may have been through ill-health although it is more likely his skills were required at Lathom Park which also handled the importation of horses from Ireland, Canada and America. William remained at Ormskirk until he was discharged from the Army at the Prees Heath dispersal centre on July 10th 1919. William qualified for the 1914 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Leyther
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 7:09 PM

Hello Alan
Great work again, and quick! really pleased with this information, as always, you have made it very easy for me to understand. THANK YOU very much for this. Much appreciated and will certainly help with further family research.

Best regards
Leyther1
Posted by: Jeremy Thornton {Email left}
Location: France
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 8:05 AM
Alan,

I would like to know if there is any record of my maternal grandfather having served in the military during WW1 and if not why not. Nothing was ever mentioned about this in the family and I have not found anything while doing my family history research.
He was Rowland Rayner born in 1877 at Wyke in Yorkshire to William Rayner and Elizabeth Crowther. In the 1911 census he was resident at the Bulls Head pub in Ravensthorpe near Dewsbury Yorkshire and listed as a Licence Victullar. I know that he was also later a Commision Agent. Niether of these occupations would have exempted him from conscription in 1916 I suspect, so even though he was only 39 years of age in 1916 why was he not called up then, or later when the age limit was raised? Any ideas?
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 5:10 PM

Dear Jeremy,
It is not possible to state with certainty whether someone served in the services in the First World War as the surviving records are not complete. More than nine million men and women served in the British armed forces during the First World War although their service records are not centralised so searches need to be made of Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Royal Air Force, Fleet Air Arm, Nursing services and Army records for the period before and during the war. Records for those who served after 1920 or who later served again in the Second World War are not in the public domain. Of potentially seven million Army service records from the First World War only 2.8 million survived the bombing of the war office repository in Arnside Street on September 8th 1940 during the blitz and many of those have been damaged.
Effectively, there is only a 40 per cent chance of a record having survived.
The records are generally indexed online by stated year of birth and address on enlistment. At The National Archives at Kew, Surrey, England, they are on microfilm indexed by surname and forename range.
A more complete set of records is the Army medal rolls index which lists some 5.5 million campaign medal records for men who saw active service overseas. Men who served in the UK are not listed. These records rarely provide biographical information so it is not possible to identify an individual unless you already know his regiment and regimental number.
As at December 24th 1915 there were 5 million men of military age of which 2.1 million had yet to make themselves available, so before compulsory service in March 1916, only 3 out of five men volunteered to join the army while 428 thousand (nearly one in ten) had been rejected on medical grounds (Lord Derby's Report; Dec. 1915). Compulsory conscription absorbed those who became 18 years old among the men of military age and the highest age limit rose from 41 to 50 years with the Military Service Bill of April 1918 when the Government held the option to enlist men over 50 but not over the age of 56 if required.
The most reliable primary sources of evidence for service in the First World War are usually from private or family papers.
Kind regards,
Alan
Posted by: Jerry
Location: Canada
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 10:12 PM
Hello

I ran across your site recently and I'm amazed at the wonderful and timely responses you are able to provide. I am trying to find information about my grandfather, Private Evan John Edwards (#372328) who was in 1st/1st West Riding Field Ambulance. My understanding is that this was part of the 49th Division (Territorial Army). He survived the war, but the family doesn't have any details about the activities of that unit. If you have any further insight into that, or any information about him, please let me know. Thanks.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 5:09 PM

Dear Jerry,
No individual service record has survived for Evan John Edwards so it is not possible to state his military service precisely. An Army medal rolls index card recorded his as private Evans Edwards 372328 Royal Army Medical Corps. 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 overseas until some date after January 1st 1916.
The 49th (West Riding) Division, with the 1st/1st West Riding Field Ambulance RAMC arrived in France in the second week of April 1915 and by 19th April 1915 the 49th Division had concentrated in the area of Estaires; Merville and Neuf Berquin. It is not possible to state when Evan Edwards arrived in France, but he was apparently part of a draft of reinforcements sent at some date after January 1st 1916. He may well have been compulsorily conscripted in 1916 or later.
The 1st West Riding Field Ambulance traced its origins to the expansion of the part-time Volunteer Medical Staff Corps in 1888 from five city divisions to a sixth which was formed in Leeds and became known, in 1892, as the Leeds (Volunteer) Medical Staff Corps. In 1902 it became the Leeds Company RAMC (Volunteers). In 1908 at the creation of the Territorial Force the Leeds company supplied the greater part of the new 1st West Riding Field Ambulance with ten officers and 220 other ranks.
At the outbreak of war in August 1914, the 1st West Riding Field Ambulance was mobilized and trained in South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire before sailing for France on April 12th 1915. It was commanded by Lt-Col A.E.L. Wear RAMC.

In 1916, the 49th (West Riding) Division was engaged at The Battle of Albert; The Battle of Bazentin Ridge; The Battle of Pozieres Ridge and The Battle of Flers-Courcelette on the Somme. In 1917 they took part in the abortive Operation Hush on the coast of Flanders and The Battle of Poelcapelle during the Third Battle of Ypres. In 1918 the Division fought at The Battle of Estaires; The Battle of Messines; The Battle of Bailleul; The First and Second Battles of Kemmel Ridge; The Battle of the Scherpenberg; The pursuit to the Selle and The Battle of the Selle and The Battle of Valenciennes. The 49th Division was at Douai on 11 November 1918.

The war diary of the 1st West Riding Field Ambulance is held at The National Archives at Kew, Surrey, in catalogue reference WO 95/2788.
Kind regards,
Alan
Posted by: Jeremy Thornton {Email left}
Location: France
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 9:59 AM
Alan,

In the past you helped me with information concerning my grandfather Vernon Thornton. I would now like to know more about his brother Julian Thornton who was born in 1884 (I do not have the exact date) in Dewsbury, Yorkshire to Robert Thornton & Louisa Ann Field. His Short Service Attestation indicates that he signed up on the 7th June 1916 in Liverpool and joined the Liverpool Regt. His Regt number was 358240 and he was awarded the Victory and British medals. Do you have any more information and any indication as to why when he signed up, which was at the same time as his brother, when both were working together in the family business in Dewsbury, Vernon went into the KOYLI and Julian Went into the Liverpool Regt? Julians medal roll index card say the he was A/Sgt. This I persume is acting sgt and was his rank upon discharge although the discharge date is not identified on the index. I know he survived as he eventually became the head of the family rag auctioneers business in Dewsbury and i remember him well from my youth.

Thank you in advance for any additional inrormation that you can come up with such as where he may of served, port of embarkation/disembarkation, training camps etc.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 6:14 PM

Dear Jeremy,
Julian Thornton enlisted under the Derby Scheme on 9th December 1915. The Derby Scheme was a last call for men who had yet to volunteer to do so before compulsory conscription. The deadline was 12th December 1915. Men who enlisted under this scheme put their names down but returned to their homes the same day to await call-up in 1916. Julian Thornton was called-up on 2nd June 1916, by which time compulsory conscription had put an end to any choice of regiment. He was posted to "C" Company of the 2/10th (Scottish) Battalion The King's (Liverpool Regiment) on 7th June 1916 with the regimental number 7359. He was later re-numbered 358240. The Battalion trained at Mytchett in Surrey until September 1916 when it moved to Blackdown Camp, Surrey. The battalion went to France from Southampton via Havre on the night of 19th February 1917 where it served with the 172nd Infantry Brigade in the 57th Division at Le Tilleloy. The Division then remained in France and Flanders and took part in The Second Battle of Passchendaele (26 October - 7 November 1917). He was appointed a paid lance-sergeant on 26th January 1918 and was an acting sergeant while another sergeant was in hospital. On 7th February 1918 he was attached to the 1st Army Musketry School at Matringhem, France. (He held a 2nd Class Musketry Certificate) for three weeks. At the end of February he was granted leave until 27th March 1918. At the beginning of May 1918, the 2/10th Battalion King's Liverpool Regiment was absorbed by the 1st/10th Battalion King's Liverpool Regiment serving with 166th Infantry Brigade in the 55th Division.
The 1/10th Battalion then fought at The capture of Givenchy craters (24 August); and The capture of Canteleux trench (17 September). (The Defence of Givenchy was to become the single most famous action that the Division fought.) It then fought at The pursuit to Mons, in the Final Advance in Artois (2 October - 11 November) in which the Division occupied La Bassee (2 October), crossed the Haute Deule Canal (14-16 October) and captured Ath (9th November). The Division had advanced 50 miles in 80 days.
Julian was demobilized on 19th February 1919.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Jeremy Thornton
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 6:34 PM

Alan,

As always just brilliant information, one wonders how you manage to do it! Fantastic.
Posted by: David Jl Fleck
Location: Davidfleck Btinternet Com
Date: Monday 26th November 2012 at 2:35 PM
Thank you so much for your prompt reply oncerning my paternal grandfather ,I have another one or you now .Bertie James Fulcher born Norwich 9.10.1883 .sadly there are no members of my mothers family left whom I can ask ,I was told that he did not serve in the armed forces during world war 1 as he was a reserved occupation so you may not have any record of him .THANK YOU.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 26th November 2012 at 9:44 PM

Dear David,
The latest record for Bertie Fulcher born 1883 Norwich was the 1911 census which recorded him as a butcher's shop assistant living at Southend on Sea. He appears to have married Florence Louise Bethley in 1908 at Rochford district, Essex. If he did not serve in the forces there would be no forces' records for him. "Reserved occupations" in the First World War were, strictly, those occupations that were legally reserved from call-up, such as munitions workers, where factory owners were not permitted to release men who were in "reserved occupations". However, numerous trades were "starred occupations" where the pink occupation registration card created in August 1915 was marked with a black star to indicate the jobs were considered to be of national importance. By December 20th 1915, the proprietors, managers, and slaughtermen of retail butchers' shops, as well as those employed in the wholesale meat trade, cold stores and bacon curing, were considered "starred occupations" and exempt from compulsory conscription.
Kind regards,
Alan
Posted by: Bxf {Email left}
Location: Uk
Date: Monday 26th November 2012 at 2:27 AM
Hi,
I am looking for further info on Gunner 'Samuel Ewart Enion' - RFA , 15th BDE 162241. KIA 8th May 1917 and buried at Bois Carre Cemetary (CWGC).
His war record doesn't appear to have survived but any further insight re more specific details into his movements and battles would be most gratefully received.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 26th November 2012 at 5:40 PM

No individual service record has survived for Samuel Ewart Enion so it is not possible to state his wartime service in detail. An Army medal rolls index card showed he served overseas in the Royal Field Artillery as a gunner. 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. When he was killed on May 8th 1917, he was serving with "A" Battery of 15th Brigade (XV Brigade) Royal Field Artillery at Vimy Ridge in France.
"A" Battery of XV Brigade had joined XV Brigade from 28th (XXVIII Brigade) Brigade on 21st January 1917 and became A Battery of XV Brigade. 28th Brigade had served with the 6th Division until January 1917. In 1916 they had fought at The Battle of Flers-Courcelette; The Battle of Morval; and The Battle of Le Transloy, which were all on the Somme.
XV Brigade RFA served with 5 Division. In 1917 the Division had been moved from the Somme to a quieter line near Festubert. In April 1917 the Division took part in the Battle of Vimy in which the ridge was taken by the Canadians. Samuel Enion was killed on May 8th 1917 and is buried at Bois Carre British Cemetery at Thelus on Vimy ridge.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Bxf
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 12:41 PM

Hello Alan,
Just to say many thanks for insight you very kindly supplied. Your help is much appreciated.
Best regards,
bxf
Posted by: Joyce {Email left}
Location: Rotherham
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 8:10 PM
Hi alan my father was charles henry lindley born about1893 he was a privateinthe yorks&lancs reg.
he was wounded in france in w.w.1
He was discharged he then went into the home gaurd in w.w11
i would be greatful for any information
thank you
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 9:27 PM

Dear Joyce,
No individual service record has survived for Charles Henry Lindley so it is not possible to accurately state his wartime service. An Army medal rolls index card showed a Charles H Lindley served with the York and Lancaster Regiment with the regimental number 240064. That number was allotted to the 5th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment. Charles H Lindley arrived in France on 13th April 1915 which was the date the 5th Battalion went to France so it seems likely he may have served with the 5th Battalion but there is no further evidence for that.
The 5th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment was based at Rotherham and trained at Doncaster, Gainsborough and York with the 148th Infantry Brigade in the 49th Division. They went to France in April 1915. The Division's wartime engagements can be seen at:
http://www.1914-1918.net/49div.htm

Charles H Lindley's war service ended as a Corporal on 10th February 1919. He qualified for the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Kind regards,
Alan
Posted by: David Jl Fle Thank You Ck {Email left}
Location: Lancing West Sussex
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 6:19 PM
Can you help please I would like to know more about my grandfathers service in world war 1 .I have been told he was Royal Engineers his name was Middleton Fleck born Newcastle upon Tyne circa !887
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 8:28 PM

Dear David,
Middleton Fleck joined the part-time Territorial Army when it was created in 1908. He enlisted in the Northumberland Divisional Telegraph Company of the Royal Engineers on May 11th 1908 at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. In 1913 the unit took the title Signal Company instead of Telegraph Company. He remained with them when war was declared in August 1914, and was mobilized on August 5th 1914. The unit's wartime stations in 1914 were on the Tyne Defences as part of the 50th (Northumbrian) Division. In early April 1915 the Division was warned that it would go overseas and The Signals Company arrived in France on the night of 15th/16th April 1915 with the 50th Division. By 23 April 1915 the Division had concentrated in the area of Steenvoorde. It arrived as the enemy had attacked Ypres, using chlorine gas for the first time. The Division was hastily sent into the battle and then fought at The Battle of St Julien; The Battle of Frezenburg Ridge; and The Battle of Bellewaarde Ridge; which were part of the Second Battles of Ypres 1915.
Middleton's term of engagement with the Territorials ended on May 11th 1916, after eight years. He returned to the UK on May 16th 1916.
On 25th October 1916 Middleton was called-up again under compulsory conscription and served with the 2/6th Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) at Terling in Essex and then Kilworth in County Cork in Ireland from January 1917. In August 1917 Middleton was sent to France where he served at a base depot on the coast before being transferred to the Labour Corps on 7th October 1917. He initially served in 776 Area Employment Company Labour Corps. He stated he was a grave digger. On 2nd July 1918 was posted to the Graves Registration working parties also as a grave digger in the area near Bapaume. In December 1918 he was taken ill with pyrexia of unknown origin and was treated in hospital at Le Treport before being returned to the UK in January 1919. He was treated at the Military Hospital at Bagthorpe, Nottingham until March 1919 and was discharged from the army on 15th April 1919. He qualified for the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Kind regards,
Alan
Posted by: Tub {Email left}
Location: Kidderminster
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 4:47 PM
Hello Alan,
My wife's Great Uncle, Pte. Arthur William Moyes 12th.Batt. Suffolk Reg. was killed 6/1/1918. His name is on the Arras war memorial. I would like to find out where he was killed and what the action was.

Thank you for any help,
TuB
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 6:45 PM

Dear Tub,
No individual service record has survived for Arthur Moyes so it is not possible to suggest his military service. An Army medal rolls index card showed he had the regimental numbers 6084 and 201894 in the Suffolk Regiment. The latter number was allotted to the 4th Battalion Suffolk Regiment in March 1917. Arthur 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 overseas until some date after January 1st 1916. "Soldiers Died in the Great War" (HMSO 1921) recorded that Arthur Moyes had foermerly been numbered 4244 in the Suffolk Regiment. It is not possible to say when he joined the 12th Battalion Suffolk Regiment. On the day he died he was serving with the 12th Battalion which was part of the 40th Division. The Division was in the area of Mory and Ervillers, between Arras and Bapaume at the time. Arthur was among nine men of the battalion who died on January 6th 1918.
To establish what the Battalion was doing on 6th January 1918 you would need to see their war diary which is only available at The National Archives at Kew in catalogue reference WO 95/2616/1.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Tub
Date: Sunday 2nd December 2012 at 1:06 PM

Dear Alan,
Thank you so much for the information. You have got me on track. Next stop - National Archives, Kew!
Once again, many thanks,
Regards,
TuB
Posted by: Peter {Email left}
Location: Poole
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 2:15 PM
Hello again Alan,
You may remember that I asked you about my grandfather John Nunn of the South Staffs some weeks ago, well I am back asking more questions of you. I am hopeful that you may be able to answer this one for me too.
I have come across a grand-uncle John Robert Carruthers (who's record is actually there in the archives!) who joined the Manchester Regiment on 17 November 1914 but was discharged on the 19 November 1914 under KR392(3)b. This states "not being likely to become an efficient soldier". What does this mean? A medical discharge I could understand but this seems a bit vague. I looked up the relevant regulation to see if that could give a clue but it is just as vague. The only thing I can think of is that John Robert was the son of a vicar so could this be the reason, as the recruiting officer perhaps thought that he lacked the necessary toughness to be a soldier? Seems a bit tough on him if it was. If you could give any other possible reasons I would be most grateful.
Many thanks.
Peter
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 25th November 2012 at 6:44 PM

Dear Peter,
John Carruthers would have been discharged on medical grounds "having been approved by a medical officer but rejected by a recruiting officer" (King's Regulations para 392(3b)). His physical development was recorded as "fair". When he enlisted in November 1914, recruitment was at its peak and commanding officers had the rare opportunity of retaining the best recruits and combing out the weaker ones. Put simply, commanding officers took the pick of the crop and rejected the rest. The men they turned down were discharged without need for further medical examination as "unlikely to become an efficient soldier" which could cover a multitude of ailments from the need for spectacles to flat feet, ulcers and knee injuries. This type of discharge was particularly common in late 1914 when recruiting revealed a generally poor state of health of the nation and when recruiting officers could afford to be more selective in the men they retained.
Medically, John only just met the minimum requirements. He was 5ft 5ins tall which required a weight of 117 pounds with a chest measurement of 34 and a half inches with an expansion of two inches. John had the minimum chest measurement of 34 and a half inches with an expansion of two inches but was underweight at 112 pounds. His physical development was "fair" in the scale of "very good"; "good"; "fair"; or "poor".
It is conceivable he enlisted later in another regiment. After the Military Service Acts of 1916 which introduced compulsory service all medically-rejected men were subject to re-examination and if found fit could be called-up.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Peter
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 4:45 PM

Hi Alan,
Once again I thank you for your knowledge. I have to say that I thought that a certain amount of "cherry picking" of the recruits was the most likely answer but I was not sure if that would be the case.
One other thing, do you know of any companies that sell WW1 disposition maps? I would like to try to get the maps pertaining to the South Staffs but have been singularly unsuccessful in this on the net.
Peter
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 27th November 2012 at 6:26 PM

Dear Peter,
You would be very fortunate to find maps that showed a particular battalion's positions at any given date. You would need to study the war diaries of each individual battalion for any maps that were included with the diaries or to refer to the grid references stated in the war diaries and transpose those onto larger contemporary military maps. The South Staffordshire Regiment had 11 battalions that served overseas in the First World War in five different theatres of war.
The Western Front Association has published CD-ROM of military maps for the Somme and Ypres sectors from the period but military maps do not show individual battalions unless they have been over-written for a particular purpose at a particular date.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Peter
Date: Thursday 29th November 2012 at 12:07 PM

Hi Alan,
Thank you for pointing me in the right direction once again. I have been on the WFA website and I think they have just what I am looking for.
No doubt I will be back again in the future.
Many thanks
Peter

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