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Remembered Today:

RFA 'L' Prefix


Grovetown

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L/ prefix for RFA denotes a Local Enlistment.

Regards

Steve

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L/ prefix for RFA denotes a Local Enlistment.

Regards

Steve

Thanks. At the risk of sounding silly, surely the majority of enlistments were 'local' to a degree; so rendering the prefix slightly meaningless?

The reason for the query is concerning a man - L/26158 - who may have been from the Mile End area of London. The only other reference - Googling no doubt imperfectly - to an L prefix I have found does refer to another man who was from Mile End.

Best wishes,

GT.

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surely the majority of enlistments were 'local' to a degree; so rendering the prefix slightly meaningless?

At the time the artillery recruited nationally and their numbering scheme reflected this, as I understand it there were no prefixes and no discernible enlistment pattern, a recruit from Glasgow could be followed 'number wise' by a recruit from Cornwall etc.

However, in 1915, they adopted a scheme to recruit locally (their version of the infantry's pals battalions?) and this would appear to be where the L/ prefix comes in, especially with a number of the "London" RFA brigades, Camberwell is one that springs to mind.

I'm sure an Artillery expert will be along to correct me if I'm wrong.

Hope this helps.

Steve

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  • 4 months later...
However, in 1915, they adopted a scheme to recruit locally (their version of the infantry's pals battalions?) and this would appear to be where the L/ prefix comes in, especially with a number of the "London" RFA brigades, Camberwell is one that springs to mind.

Steve

Steve

Can you expand on the Camberwell link?

I'm researching an RFA man with and L/ prefix and he was from Camberwell.

Regards

Mike S

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Mike

the following batteries were formed by the Mayor and Borough of Camberwell:

156th (Camberwell) Bde RFA - 3rd February 1915

162nd (Camberwell) Bde RFA - 17th April 1915

166th (Camberwell) Bde RFA - 17th April 1915

167th (Camberwell) Howitzer Bde RFA - 26th March 1915

126th (Camberwell) Heavy Bty and Ammunition Column RGA - 17th April 1915

The 'L' prefix relates to men who enlisted into the RFA only and during 1915 as part of K4 New Army and seems to be the brigades numbered 148th - 176th RFA (all New Army, 30th - 35th Divisions inclusive). Like Steve has mentioned above they were in effect 'Pals' units, most 'L' prefix RFA men appear to be London, Lancashire and Yorkshire recruits

cheers, Jon

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Mike

"Camberwell" were the original 33rd Divisional Artillery and consisted of 156th, 162nd, 166th and 167th (H) Brigades RFA along with the 33rd Divisional Ammunition Column. They were designated as such because they were formed there by the Mayor and a committee in early 1915.

This is from the LLT mothersite...

The original Divisional artillery was designated "Camberwell", as it was raised there by the Mayor and a committee between January and June 1915. Initial assembly and training took place in Dulwich. It joined the Division at Bulford between 5 and 8 August 1915. However the artillery did not proceed to France with Division. Instead, it took the artillery of the 54th (East Anglian) Division. 33rd Divisional artillery (as shown below) crossed to France and rejoined its Division in December 1915

The man I was researching for a colleague had the number L/23792 which appears to be a fairly late enlistment, I believe on or around the 18th/19th May 1915. The entry into theatre date on his MIC was 12th December 1915, theatre (1) France.

Regards

Steve

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Thanks Jon and Steve - that's useful information.

This bloke came from Camberwell and the only likely candidate on the medal cards has the number L/32911 with an even later enlistment date of 29/06/1915 (from SWB list). No date overseas as he was awarded a pair.

Thanks to you both

Mike S

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The reason for the query is concerning a man - L/26158 - who may have been from the Mile End area of London. The only other reference - Googling no doubt imperfectly - to an L prefix I have found does refer to another man who was from Mile End.

Best wishes,

GT.

My grandad was an 'L' prefix and enlisted in Liverpool.

Experts...

Am I making too much of a sweeping assumption that my Grandad was most likely to be with 148th & 30th Div?

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My grandad was an 'L' prefix and enlisted in Liverpool.

Experts...

Am I making too much of a sweeping assumption that my Grandad was most likely to be with 148th & 30th Div?

Expert I'm not but I'd suggest that it is too much of a sweeping assumption.

As I understand it the L/ prefix men you're talking about were designated "County Palatine" or "2nd County Palatine" and thus, I assume, could have been assigned to any of the following:

County Palatine - 30th Division (148th, 149th, 150th or 151st (H) Brigades & Divisional Ammunition Column).

2nd County Palatine - 32nd Division (165th, 169th, 170th or 171st Brigades & Divisional Ammunition Column).

Hopefully your expert will be along soon to confirm.

Regards

Steve

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Thanks for your comments Steve...

I've 'leant' towards 30th Div because

1) He enlisted in Liverpool with 'L' prefix

2) amongst my Grandad's possessions were a photo of a John Hartley 148th (CP) Amm Cm. We understand it was his mate.

3) We know that my grandad was at Somme on 1st July which also ties up with 30th Div.

I know I'm clutching at straws..but when straws are all there are to clutch !?!?!

Simon

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  • 2 years later...

a John William Hartley L/8885(from Blackburn?) went to France probably with 148th Bde from date of entry.. (originally maybe with 150th Bde from his patchy records). May he be the man referred to 148th (County Palatine) Ammunition Column. old posting i know but was looking at 148th Bde postings for something else..

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