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9th Suffolk


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Hi all, I've just started researching a relative and have found out that he served in the 9th Suffolk regiment from 08/09/1914. According to the SWB medal roll he was discharged on 13/12/1916 from 'Depot', due to 'Wounds'. As I'm a complete novice (but learning fast from this wonderful forum) I'm hoping that someone may be able to enlighten me as to the whereabouts of the 9th Suffolks during his time and where he may have picked up the wounds.

I'm also puzzling over what it means by Discharged from 'Depot'?

Many thanks


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A man discharged from the army could be discharged any time from about 2 months to a year after receving his wounds, so you've a bigger search area than you thought!

What happened with wounded men is that they would be evacuated from the front, first to Field Ambulances and Casualty Clearing Stations, then to Hospitals on the coast of France. If they needed treatment in the UK they would be evacuated across the channel. At this point, a man was removed for records purposes from his battalion and posted to the Depot of his Regiment. On release from hospital he would, after a couple of weeks home leave, join the Reserve battalion of his Regiment and get ready to head back to France. Of course, many men received wounds that would cause his discharge from the army whilst in the UK military hospital system, hence they were (for records purposes) on the books of the Depot (though never actually physically present at the Depot).

Can we know his name, please?


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9th (Serv) Battalion Suffolk Regiment

Formed at Bury St. Edmunds in September 1914 as part of K3 and attached to 71st Brigade in 24th Division.

30 August 1915 : landed at Boulogne and Joins BEF as Part of 24th Division.

25thSeptember 1915 7th (Service) and 9th (Service) Battalions at the Battle of Loos, France

26th September 1915 Sgt Arthur Frederick Saunders, 9th (Service) Battalion, wins his Victoria Cross at Loos.

Arthur Frederick Saunders born on 23 Apr 1878 in St John's parish, Ipswich, Suffolk, Arthur served in the Royal Navy 1894-1909, becoming a 1st Class Petty Officer.

In 1914 he enlisted in the Army when war was declared, joining the 9th (Service) Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, and was promoted to the rank of sergeant within a month.

For conspicuous bravery near Loos, France, 26 Sep 1915 he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

He was also awarded The 1914/15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal and, on discharge, the Silver Wound Badge No. 72823 due to being wounded when winning his VC.

In WW2 he was an RQMS (Regimental Quartermaster Sgt) in the Home Guard.

Arthur died on 30 Jul 1947 at Ipswich, aged 69.

His VC was presented by his widow to the Suffolk Regimental Museum, Bury St Edmunds

11 October 1915: transferred with Brigade to 6th Division.

1st July 1916 until 18 November 1916 Battle of the Somme ¬; six Suffolk Battalions - 11th (Service) on the first day are followed by 2nd, 1/4th, 7th (Service), and 9th (Service).

September 1916 9th (Service) Battalion at the Battle of Flers-Courcellette ¬ to the 22nd - includes tanks for the first time.

Nov 1916 Battle of Cambrai ¬ 7th (Service) and 9th (Service) Battalions.

16 February 1918: disbanded in at Courcelles-le-Compte France. ,

4th December 1921 5th Battalion is disbanded and its Colours, with those of the 7th, 8th 9th and 12th Service Battalions are laid-up in St Mary's Church, Bury St Edmunds

The history of 24th Division

This Division was established in September 1914 as part of Army Order 388 authorising Kitchener's Third New Army, K3. The units of the Division began to assemble in the area of Shoreham. Early days were somewhat chaotic, the new volunteers having very few trained officers and NCOs to command them, no organised billets or equipment. It was March 1915 before makeshift drab uniforms arrived and not untul July before rifles were issued.

The Division moved 19-23 June 1915 to Aldershot for final training. Lord Kitchener inspected the Division at Chobham ranges on 19 August and next day it was the turn of King George V. Orders were received on 19 August to move to France and the first units departed one week later.

Concentration was completed in the area between Etaples and St Pol on 4 September. The Division's first experience was truly appalling. Having been in France for only a few days, lengthy forced marches brought it into the reserve for the British assault at Loos. GHQ planning left it too far behind to be a useful reinforcement on the first day, but it was sent into action on 26 September, whereupon it suffered over 4178 casualties for very little gain.

The Division served on the Western Front for the remainder of the war, taking part in many of the significant actions:


The Battle of Loos


The German gas attack at Wulverghem

The Battle of Delville Wood*

The Battle of Guillemont*

The battles marked * are phases of the Battles of the Somme 1916


The Battle of Vimy Ridge, a phase of the Arras offensive 1917

The Battle of Messines

The Battle of Pilkem Ridge***

The Battle of Langemarck***

The battles marked *** are phases of the Third Battles of Ypres

The Cambrai Operations (the German counter attack)


The Battle of St Quentin+

The Actions at the Somme Crossings+

The Battle of Rosieres+

The First Battle of the Avre+

The battles marked + are phases of the First Battles of the Somme 1918

The Battle of Cambrai 1918, a phase of the Battles of the Hindenburg Line

The pursuit to the Selle^

The Battle of the Sambre^, including the passage of the Grand Honelle

The battles marked ^ are phases of the Final Advance in Picardy

When the Armistice came into effect at 11am on 11 November 1918 the units of the Division were holding positions 1.5 miles east of the Maubeuge-Mons road. Between 17-19 November they moved back to the area between Denain and Douai and 25-27 November went to the area St Amand-Orchies. On 18 December the Division moved once more, to Tournai. Demobilisation began and by 26 March 1919 only cadres were left. In all the 24th Division had suffered the loss of 35362 killed, wounded and missing.

71st Brigade

Brigade moved to 6th Division on 11 October 1915 in exchange for 17th Brigade

9th Bn, the Norfolk Regiment

9th Bn, the Suffolk Regiment

8th Bn, the Bedfordshire Regiment

11th Bn, the Essex Regiment

The history of 6th Division

This peacetime Division of the pre-war army was quartered in Ireland and England at the outbreak of war, and was ordered on mobilisation to concentrate near Cambridge. By early September it was fully equipped and trained. On the 10 September 1914 it landed at St Nazaire and proceeded to the Western Front, where it remained throughout the war. The Division arrived in time to reinforce the hard-pressed BEF on the Aisne, before the whole army was moved north into Flanders:


The actions on the Aisne heights


The action at Hooge


The Battle of Flers-Courcelette*

The Battle of Morval*

The Battle of Le Transloy*

The battles marked * are phases of the Battles of the Somme 1916


The Battle of Hill 70 (at same time as the Battles of Arras 1917)

The Cambrai operations


The Battle of St Quentin**

The battle marked ** is a phase of the First Battles of the Somme 1918

The Battle of Bailleul***

The First Battle of Kemmel Ridge***

The Second Battle of Kemmel Ridge***

The Advance in Flanders

The Battle of Epehy+

The Battle of the St Quentin Canal+

The Battle of Beaurevoir+

The Battle of Cambrai 1918+

The battles marked + are phases of the Battles of the Hindenburg Line

The pursuit to the Selle

The Battle of the Selle

The Division was billeted around Bohain at the Armistice on 11 November 1918. It was selected to march into Germany as part of the occupation force and began to move 14-18 November to Solre-le-Chateau to assemble. The Division crossed the German border on 13 December and reached its destination at Bruhl on 23 December

71st Brigade

Brigade transferred from 24th Division in exchange for 17th Brigade on 11 October 1915

9th Bn, the Norfolk Regt

9th Bn, the Suffolk Regt disbanded February 1918

8th Bn, the Bedfordshire Regt left November 1915

11th Bn, the Essex Regt left October 1915

2nd Bn, the Sherwood Foresters joined October 1915

1st Bn, the Leicestershire Regt joined November 1915

71st Machine Gun Company formed 14 March 1916

left to move into 6th MG Battalion 1 March 1918

71st Trench Mortar Battery formed April 1916

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The Battalion's War Diary is at Kew under WO95/1625 and runs from Aug 1915 to Feb 1918. If you can get there I recommend that you get to read this,though whether you get to know where your relative was wounded is another matter. They were not too forthcoming with names of other ranks in these Diaries,merely showing numbers of casualties,so he could have been any one of a few dozen incidents. He certainly had enough opportunities to get a wound judging by his Division's itinerary !


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Arthur was reported as Wounded in the Times Casualty Lists of 10-1-1916 along with a fair few other 9th Suffolks. The delay was usually about a month and most of these men would have been wounded about the same time.


Now you have a lot more men to research!

By comparison, the Northamptonshire Regiment man further down the list (not shown on the extract) was wounded on 22-12-1915, BUT he was in a different division, so the actual date may vary a bit.

EDIT: 13394 Private Arthur William Paternoster on the above list was wounded on 19-12-1915.


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Bearing in mind Arthur Paternosters number was two away from Arthur Baguley's a quick summary of the first few months of his war would help to understand Arthur Baguley's war.

- Enlisted at Ipswich on 15th September 1914.

- Posted to "B" Company, 9th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, 18-9-1914

- Embarked to France on 30th August 1915.

- Wounded at Ypres on 19th December 1915.

- Admitted to 51 Field Ambulance on 19th December 1915.

- Admitted to No. 10 Casualty Clearing Station on 19th December 1915.

- Admitted to No. 26 Gen. Hospital at Etaples, 20th December 1915.

I wouldn't rely on the evacuation "chain" being exactly the same, though!

Assuming the date of his wounding as 19-12-1915, this topic mentions the events of that day - namely a German bombardment and gas attack.



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Thank you very much for your help Steve, Sotonmate & Martin. The other link indicated that most of the casualties on that day probably would have died so coupled with the timespan of almost a year before he was discharged it sounds like he may have been in hospital for a long time and was lucky to survive at all.

Any ideas where I can find out which hospital he could have been sent to in the UK?


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That sort of detail is usually found only on his service papers or in local (Ipswich ? - his residence per the 1911 Census) papers.


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The "Killed" men from the same list for the record:


and Died of Wounds:



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