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Royal Field Artillery


Peter Taylor
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Re:- Laura V post 25-02-2011 with link.

Tom's service number 1588 my Grandfather had No. 1579 later 705642.

He survived the war but his obituary says he served in "C" battery.

His medal card shows 211th Brigade.

He was awarded the MM for bravery 28-03-1918.

Alfred Rushton.

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Hi

The History of The Bolton Artillery by Palin Dobson records Other Ranks who were awarded Honours during the Great War (App X). The names include "705642 Cpl Rushton A MM". No mention in the Bolton papers, however, indicating that he was not from Bolton. The local paper of where he was from may have his picture and biography and if you are lucky a description of how he won the Award. I know that Other Ranks who were decorated in 1917 are mentioned by name in the 211 Brigade War Diaries (WO 95/2649) and in a file marked A&Q Branch in the 42 Div Commander RA War Diaries (WO 95/2647) at The National Archives, Kew.

Brian.

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Thanks Brian,

I have a newspaper cutting ( which paper unknown)

Reads "proceeded to Egypt in May 1915 where he remained till Feb 1917 he then being drafted to France.

There he took part in a great deal of heavy fighting. On March 28th 1918 during very heavy German attacks for his conspicuous gallantry and assistance to the wounded under very heavy gunfire at Foncquevillers his conduct was recognised and he was awarded this medal.

This was the place where the British troops succeeded in bringing the enemy's advance to a stop"

The cutting also has his photograph above the writing.

He lived at the time in Newton , Hyde.

Previously Ashton Under Lyne.

Any information regarding the situation in the area of Foncquevillers around 28th March 1918 would be appreciated.

Eddie.

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A number of photographs 10+ have come into my possession that show my Grandfather with others. Large areas of tents etc.

All taken I presume in Egypt.

I am willing to forward a number to a keen researcher of the 42nd East Lancs RFA.

Eddie.

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A number of photographs 10+ have come into my possession that show my Grandfather with others. Large areas of tents etc.

All taken I presume in Egypt.

I am willing to forward a number to a keen researcher of the 42nd East Lancs RFA.

Eddie.

Hello Eddie

Are any names listed with the photos? The renumbering of the Brigades in April 1916 may make it difficult to match if they were taken in Egypt prior to that date, they may be detailed as East Lancs Bolton or Blackburn Artillery.

My grandfather was in D/211th Brigade - Henry McGee.

Kevin

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Kevin,

No names on front or back of photos.

Some show every day life eating ,washing ,washing clothes.

Lines of tents and horse lines.

One is of particular interest.

Three grave markers. Well made wooden crosses.

The photos are only 3 by 2 inch.

When I can get a better magnifying glass I'm sure I will be able to read the names and other information.

As I'm new on here is it in order to send information on the crosses?

Eddie.

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When I can get a better magnifying glass I'm sure I will be able to read the names and other information.

As I'm new on here is it in order to send information on the crosses?

Eddie.

Hello Eddie

I can see no reason to stop you showing the information. Particularly if you have original prints.

Occasionally a problem occurs if someone copies another person's/organisation's photographs as this could be against copyright or maybe the copy was shown without permission. Often you will see copies of photos which are shown with the agreement of the owner of the print. In many books acknowledgments appear which show that agreement was given.

Kevin

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Kevin,

These are original photos taken in the desert.

As soon as I can locate a stronger magnifying glass I will post the information.

Eddie.

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  • 3 months later...

Hi,

Just wondering if I can jump in on this one. My great, great Grandad was William George Leeder (169572, 711951) and was I think with the 212 brigade as a Driver. He survived the war but was injured and received the Silver War badge. If anyone has any paper cuttings which might have info on this, I would be really grateful. Finding info a bit thin on the ground!

Thanks in advance!

Lindsay

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Lindsay

Forum member KONDOA has provided a breakdown of Territorial RFA numbers. 710001 to 715000 were allocated to 1/3 East Lancs Brigade RFA (The Bolton Artillery) when their designation was changed to 212 Brigade (they were serving in Egypt at the time) and also to the Reserve Brigades 2/3 and 3/3 ELB which were raised in Bolton in 1915. The Reserve Brigades were renamed 332 Brigade which was broken up in France in 1917. 212 Brigade was renamed 211 Brigade in December 1916 and went on to serve in France from March 1917. I have researched the Bolton Artillery in the Library Local Studies and have prepared a number of indexes of all names I can find in the papers. The Bolton papers printed the names and addresses of all recruits in a column called "Rally to the Flag" but I can find no trace of William joining the Reserve Brigades in 1915 in Bolton, nor in any of my indexes. His Silver War Badge record shows that he enlisted on 12/05/1915 and was discharged on 07/03/1919 cause sickness, and shows his number as 169572. Was William from Bolton.

Brian

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Lindsay

The Bolton Evening News ran a column from 25/11/1914 to 25/11/1915 called "Rally to the Flag". It printed the names and addresses of recruits and showed the Units that they had joined. I could not find any trace of William enlisting in Bolton in May 1915, although one recruit on 12/05 asked for his details not to be published. I am going through the Bolton papers at the moment to get school, church and workplace Rolls of Honour (for those serving). His name does not appear on any I have got so far. I will keep my eyes open for his name in the papers as I progress.

Brian

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  • 2 weeks later...

Eddie

Re posts 51 to 53. 705642 Corpl. A Rushton is named in the May 1918 War Diary of 42 Div CRA, in the file marked A & Q Branch, in an appendix called Honours and Rewards. It confirms his Unit as 211 Brigade but does not show which battery, and his award as the MM. Please PM me with an e mail address and I will send it on, also the WD for 211 Brigade for March 1918.

Brian

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  • 3 months later...

Hi Brian,

I hope you can still respond to this thread.

I posted to this thread a while back and am still actively researching 211 Brigade and its wider war-service context. I now have literally thousands of documents and diaries to build up a highly-detailed picture of their activities and will eventually write it up in some form, complete with detailed maps.

Of course, I have almost no individual detail on my Grandfather at all, beyond the details I included earlier in this thread. If, in your research into Bolton papers, you stumbled across anything specific about my Grandfather, I'd be very interested to hear about it, if you wouldn't mind letting me know? His details are:

Driver David Henry Hirst (called Hurst on some official documents)

Serial numbers 1332 and 710520.

18 Battery, 1/3 Brigade (Bolton Artillery) East Lancs Division (later 212 then 211 Brigade, 42 Div etc)

Sailed to Egypt at the start, served in Gallipoli and on the Western Front to the end

Was wounded and gassed.

Demobbed 10/05/19.

Born in Bolton 1897.

Should you need any info from diaries etc (most units associated with the Brigade, that is, not just 42 Div), please let me know.

Thanks very much and I look forward to hearing from you.

Cheers

Robin

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Hi Robin

I read your post about David on the thread about Robert Dixon (started by Ultima in 2009). The only reference to David that I found in the papers is a mention on the Municipal Secondary School Roll of Honour in the Bolton Evening News edition 22/12/1914. It reads "Hirst, D. H. - Driver, 3rd East Lancs RFA". Earlier this year however Ultima posted a photograph on the Robert Dixon thread and we think that David is on it. Have a look. I can e mail you the page of the BEN if you PM me with your details.

Cheers

Brian

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Hi Brian,

Many thanks. I found the photo yesterday and posted to that thread. I was absolutely delighted. I too believe that it is him. A real treat for me.

Thanks again.

Cheers

Robin

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Robin

Glad you are back on this thread. My interest in the Bolton Artillery started when I was researching my grandfather. All I knew was that he had served in the Royal Engineers and was wounded and discharged. He is shown in the Bolton Evening News of 25/03/1915 as enlisting into the Manchester Engineers. These were the County Palatine RE (and RA) recruited locally by Lord Derby and the Manchester Recruiting Committee for 30 Div. I started a thread about him "83123 Spr John Morris" in Soldiers. His only other mention in the BEN is in the Official Casualty List in the edition of 12/10/1916. I followed the reports on the Bolton Artillery and thought that there was so much info that it should not go unrecorded, so I indexed every name I could find and in what context and gave a copy to Local Studies for Bolton Archives. Please feel free to check any names with me.

Cheers

Brian

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  • 1 month later...
Guest stewartroad

I have recently found a picture postcard from my grandmother to my grandfather while he was serving in France during WW1 the address is Gunner A McGregor 125979 "A" battery 211th brigade R F A B E F France. I would like to know where I could find his service records

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Hi

His Medal Index Card gives his details as Alexander McGregor, number 125979. He has no 14/15 Star so did not go abroad until after 31/12/1915. His service record does not appear to have survived. He is not mentioned in the Bolton papers (211 Brigade was originally 3 East Lancs Brigade TA - The Bolton Artillery). Original Bolton Artillery men were given numbers in the series 710001 to 715000 so Alexander was probably conscripted and posted to 211. The Brigade was in Egypt in 1916 and arrived on the Western Front in March 1917. In September it was in action at Ypres. Can you say where he was from and what the date on the postcard was, I can tell you where he was at that time.

Brian

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Guest stewartroad

Hi, Thank you for your very quick reply. The post card is dated 9/2/17, he lived in the Dennyloanhead/Bonnybridge area of Stirlingshire, My grandparents were not married at that time they married in Jan. 1919. in Bonnybridge the marriage certificate states that he was a gunner in the RFA.. Many thanks Sheena

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Hi

Just found this link and it looks like my Grandfather could have served in 211 bde but can anyone confirm this or otherwise.

His name was James Shufflebotham Driver RFA 706028

Victory Medal & British Medal but no14/15 Star. No further information from his medal card not even when he entered service. His service No is within the range.

He was living in the Hulme area of Manchester when he joined up. The 1911 census shows he was a carter delivering groceries. His service record does not appear to have survived but he survived the war, sadly he died before I was born. I do still have his cap badge but not his medals or spurs, which I know where in the family somewhere.

I have a photo of him but have always wondered where it was taken as it shows a toy monkey in the background, could this indicate Egypt?. The name on the photographers stamp is not clear.

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Graham

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On 12 November 2014 at 17:33, grahamh said:

Hi

Just found this link and it looks like my Grandfather could have served in 211 bde but can anyone confirm this or otherwise.

His name was James Shufflebotham Driver RFA 706028

Victory Medal & British Medal but no14/15 Star. No further information from his medal card not even when he entered service. His service No is within the range.

He was living in the Hulme area of Manchester when he joined up. The 1911 census shows he was a carter delivering groceries. His service record does not appear to have survived but he survived the war, sadly he died before I was born. I do still have his cap badge but not his medals or spurs, which I know where in the family somewhere.

I have a photo of him but have always wondered where it was taken as it shows a toy monkey in the background, could this indicate Egypt?. The name on the photographers stamp is not clear.

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Graham

Hello Graham

Trying to confirm details about soldiers who survived is more difficult than when researching those who died. The early part of this thread gives details of the 211 progress from Egypt to Western Front. My Grandfather had number 706318 so it seems likely they were together - he was from Chorlton-on-Medlock/Ardwick area of Manchester. Gibbons book on East Lancs 42nd Division gives a flavour of how the 211th went through the War. Remember that the Artillery didn't necessarily follow its Division exactly. Quite often they were linked to other Divisions for a short time or remained in action while their Division rested.

There is a War Diary for 211th D

Kevin

Edited by kevmc
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Graham

In post #4 of this thread I summarised the 42nd Division movements in relation to the Western Front.

Subsequently I used 211th Brigade Diaries to carry out a similar summary:

THESE ARE THE FOOTSTEPS OF 211th BRIGADE FROM ARRIVAL IN FRANCE TO END OF WW1

Date

22nd Feb 1917 left Alexandria

4th March 1917 Arrived in Marseilles

14th March 1917 D Battery arrived in Abbeville (Pont Remy) billeted at Port-Le-Grand

The Brigade was spread around villages in Abbeville area eg Caours

Remained here for training

3rd April 1917 marched to St Sauveur (21 miles) started at 8am arrived 6pm

5th April 1917 marched to Hamelet (12 miles) started 9am arrived 4pm

6th April 1917 moved to Bois Olympe

8th April 1917 moved to Doingt here bivouaced in open field

9th April 1917 moved to Villers Faucon. Wagon lines formed at Templeux La Fosse. Slight shrapnel injuries to a number of men in this period.

In line at Epehy throughout April.

Also here in May with particular mention of:

3rd May 1917 Canal Wood and Ossus Wood

10th May 1917 Canal Wood and Ossus Wood and Vendhuile

20th May 1917 Gillemont Farm bombarded using Aeroplane sightings

20th & 21st May 1917 part of each Battery relieved to the wagon line at Templeux La Fosse

22nd May 1917 marched to Vallulart Wood (9 miles)

23rd May 1917 Havrincourt Wood

5th June 1917 Ribecourt

Here for rest of June and July up until 24th July. D/211 must have been elsewhere as the Diary notes its return on 24th

2nd Aug 1917 Brigade moved to Gouzeaucourt Wood under control of 40th Division

22nd Aug 1917 Evacuated positions going to wagon line

25th Aug 1917 marched to Peronne

26th Aug 1917 by train to Godewervelde then marched to Watou

28th Aug 1917 in action at the Ypres salient. Potijze ie Paschendael / Tyne Cot / Frezenberg

here throughout August and September

30th Sep 1917 Wormhoudt

1st Oct 1917 to Teteghem and to La Panne

October 1917 Nieuport

16th Oct 1917 Bombard Palace Hotel, Westende Bains

21st Nov 1917 to Ghyvelde

23rd Nov 1917 to Wormhoudt

24th Nov 1917 to Reitveld

25th Nov 1917 to Hazerbruck

26th Nov 1917 to Fontes

30th Nov 1917 to Calonne

In action at Festubert

1st Dec 1917 Robecq to Essars. Action at Festubert, Loisne

2nd Dec 1917 La Bassee and stayed in position

29th Dec 1917 Givenchy in La Bassee area

1918

18th Feb 1918 to Vendin-Les-Bethune and Annezin

3rd March 1918 From Annezin to Ames Nr Lillers

23rd March 1918 marched to Caucourt 6 miles sth of Bruay

24th March 1918 marched to Bavincourt then orders changed to go to Adinfer 8 miles sth of Arras

25th March 1918 moved to valley behind Courcelles

at noon moved to sth of Logeast Wood

6pm withdrew to Courcelles

11pm withdrew to sth of Ablainzeville

26th March 1918 8am sth east of Essarts

3pm shelled Achiet le Petit

27th March 1918 hit by enemy shells at Essarts

28th March 1918 Essarts and still being hit by enemy fire

1st April 1918 D Battery hit by shells - 2 Howitzers destroyed and 4 taken to workshops for repair

5th April 1918 Still in Essarts with heavy Gas and HE bombardment in Essarts and valley north and south

7th April 1918 D Battery back in action

8th April 1918 Essarts - still receiving heavy attacks of Gas and HE

20th April 1918 at Fonquevillers

4th May 1918 at Rossignol Wood attacked here throughout June

4th July 1918 at Sailly Au Bois

4th Aug 1918 Bombed La Signy Farm

19th Aug 1918 Hebuterne - Collincamp Ridge to position west of Serre

21st Aug 1918 Barrage of Hill 140 west of Miraumont assist New Zealanders attack Puesieux

22nd Aug 1918 assist with recapture of Beauregard Dovecote

23rd Aug 1918 attack Irles and valley north of Miraumont

24th Aug 1918 take Miraumont also at Puisieux

25th Aug 1918 Miraumont and Loupart Wood

28th Aug 1918 attack south end of Bapaume

29th Aug 1918 in position north of Le Barque Thilloy

1st Sept 1918 at Reincourt

2nd Sept 1918 Villers Au Flos and east of Barastre

4th Sept 1918 Neuville

5th Sept 1918 west of Ytres

7th Sept 1918 march to Beaulencourt

9th Sept 1918 march to Ytres

12th Sept 1918 Gouzeacourt

13th Sept 1918 rest east of Ytres

16th Sept 1918 Bertincourt

17th Sept 1918 continue at Bertincourt resting

18th Sept 1918 Velu Wood

25th Sept 1918 take positions NE corner of Havrincourt Wood

27th Sept 1918 Flesquieres Ridge

28th Sept 1918 Highland Ridge advance in afternoon to sth of Ribecourt

29th Sept 1918 assist in attack on La Vacquierie and Bonavis Ridge

30th Sept 1918 positioned Couillet Valley

1pm La Vacquierie

4th Oct 1918 move forward to valley south of Crevecouer

6th Oct 1918 cross Canal D'Escaut and take position west of Lesdain assist NZ attack on Beauvois

8th Oct 1918 remain at Esnes

9th Oct 1918 at rest

11th Oct 1918 assist with preparations to cross River Selle. Position 1000 yds north west of Veisly

13th - 18th Oct 1918 in action Veisly

20th Oct 1918 Vertigneul

21st Oct 1918 cross River Selle take up position Solesmes

23rd Oct 1918 Romeries - Vendegles au Bois line. Capture Neuville

24th Oct 1918 move on to Pont a Pierre and Beaudignies

27th Oct 1918 move back to Romeries for rest

3rd Nov 1918 move to east edge of Beudignies

4th Nov 1918 Le Quesnoy

9th Nov 1918 move to east of Hautmont

11th Nov 1918 end

13th Nov 1918 Hautmont

Hope this is of interest.

Kevin

Place names as entered in diary. Not difficult to trace villages/towns with current spelling on modern maps.

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Sheena

I can't help with the date on the postcard since the Brigade did not arrive in France until March 1917 direct from Egypt. Kevin has kindly provided details of the Brigade's whereabouts and I also have copies of the War Diaries if you need any look ups. If Alexander was still in the Army in the 1920s then his records may be with the Veteran's Agency in Glasgow, otherwise you have joined the long, sad roll call of those of us whose ancestor's records did not survive.

Brian

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