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headgardener

WW1 service that extends beyond 1921

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headgardener

There's thread open at the moment on Frank Easton Woodhead. He appears to have served in the army until about 1923.

His half-brother, Brian, was told by someone at the MOD that there's not a lot of point searching the MOD's records because a lot of them were lost in the Blitz. Surely he's talking about the WW1 papers? Were they all stored together?

During the course of searching through hundreds (or more...) of WW1 service papers, I've found a couple of sets of service papers that extend into the 1920's, I've also found a few dating back to the Victorian and Edwardian era. But I've never heard of post-war papers being lost in the Blitz. If they were all stored together I'd have expected more post-war papers to have turned up at TNA, or for 'burnt' papers to turn up amongst the existing pre-war papers.

Has anyone ever tried to get hold of post-WW1 papers and been told that they were lost during the Blitz? What do you think of the advice Brian's been given by the MOD?(see post No.146 onTHIS page)

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MickLeeds

There's thread open at the moment on Frank Easton Woodhead. He appears to have served in the army until about 1923.

His half-brother, Brian, was told by someone at the MOD that there's not a lot of point searching the MOD's records because a lot of them were lost in the Blitz. Surely he's talking about the WW1 papers? Were they all stored together?

During the course of searching through hundreds (or more...) of WW1 service papers, I've found a couple of sets of service papers that extend into the 1920's, I've also found a few dating back to the Victorian and Edwardian era. But I've never heard of post-war papers being lost in the Blitz. If they were all stored together I'd have expected more post-war papers to have turned up at TNA, or for 'burnt' papers to turn up amongst the existing pre-war papers.

Has anyone ever tried to get hold of post-WW1 papers and been told that they were lost during the Blitz? What do you think of the advice Brian's been given by the MOD?(see post No.146 onTHIS page)

According to this MOD link they still hold all service records post 1920 but add that:

However, the size and age of the archive is such that in a small number of cases it will be impossible for us to find a file, even if we have been supplied with all the relevant information. If we have to inform you of this disappointing result you may be assured that every possible search has taken place. If a search is unsuccessful we are unable to refund payment. [/size]

http://www.veterans-uk.info/pdfs/service_records/army_pack.pdf

Mick.

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kildaremark

Yes, my grandfather served from 1915-1922 with the Royal Garrison Artillery and the MOD can't come up with his service records.

I don't believe it helps that the service numbers changed in 1921. They did not definitively say that they do not have them but that they cannot locate them. I think it is still possible when they scan them at some point in the future they may turn up.

Mark

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headgardener

Mick,

Thanks for posting that extract and link.

Mark,

Thanks for reporting your experiences with the MOD. Did your g'father have a reasonably common name?

Can anyone else add their two-bob's worth to this thread? Plenty of people must have ordered post-war service papers from the MOD.

How did any of you get on with them......?

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andybw125

Hi,

My grandfather - James Wilkinson RGA - served between 1916 and 1921. I applied to Glasgow for his records but without thinking, sent them his service number. He was commissioned in 1918 and I should have sent them his "P" number. As a result I was told they did not have the records. I rang them and told a very helpful lady that it was my mistake and here was the "P" number and she searched a database and found the number with the correct name and rank but the wrong date of birth. The one on file would have had him at war in a nappies. She changed the entry and I re-applied for the records. It took them over six months to arrive and there was less than I had hoped for but they were worth the wait.

Conclusion - there are an awful lot of records in a huge wharehouse in Derbyshire with a database on a computer in Glasgow. It is worth making the search on as many parameters as possible and maybe even phoning to have a talk with the staff.

Note of caution - As I understand things, the needs of serving soldiers and their families are given preference by the staff at Glasgow, who have all their records to deal with as well. It all takes time so be prepared for a long wait.

Why the WW1 records are still there is a mystery, does anyone know?

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allen.h

Mick,

Thanks for posting that extract and link.

Mark,

Thanks for reporting your experiences with the MOD. Did your g'father have a reasonably common name?

Can anyone else add their two-bob's worth to this thread? Plenty of people must have ordered post-war service papers from the MOD.

How did any of you get on with them......?

Re the post war service records, I have recently obtained the service records of my Uncle who served with the Cameronians 1926-1938.

I had to wait for 9 months to receive them, but well worth the wait 16 pages of army details plus now in the process of obtaining a medal that no family member knew he was entitled to

regards to all

Allen H

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mandy hall

I applied last year for my grandad's service records and Hall is a reasonably common surname . I sent a copy of his death certificate and a copy of his character reference from the army in 1925 when he was discharged, (although the service papers show he was in the army reserve until 1938). I also put both of his service numbers on the paper work. I think I must have been really lucky because they turned up 3 months later.

I did know that the MOD had his service papers because in the 1960s he tried to get a pension for his service in both wars (and failed). I have the replies he was sent from the MOD refering to his service file and letters from the local MP at the time who he also got involved with his case. I was worried however that maybe his records would not have been re-filed properly.

I received about 8 pages allowing me to trace his movements during the war. One of the most amazing things I discovered from this was he joined the 12th Suffolk Regiment on 24 November 1915 and was discharged 9 days later, he was then conscripted I assume and joined the RE on 22 May 1916. As he was a member of the Royal Engineers the service papers allowed me follow his movements between Field Companies, although he is not mentioned by name in the War Diaries he is noted as a transfer of other ranks between Field Companies and the dates tie in with the service records exactly. The service records also show he was admitted to hospital in Rouen in July 1918, but what I would really love to know is did he know that his brother had died and was buried Rouen 2 months before in May 1918? To my knowledge he never visited his brother's grave.

My next task is to apply for his 2WW RAF records. Anyone got any experience of how long the RAF take to deal with enquiries?

Mandy

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allen.h

I applied last year for my grandad's service records and Hall is a reasonably common surname . I sent a copy of his death certificate and a copy of his character reference from the army in 1925 when he was discharged, (although the service papers show he was in the army reserve until 1938). I also put both of his service numbers on the paper work. I think I must have been really lucky because they turned up 3 months later.

I did know that the MOD had his service papers because in the 1960s he tried to get a pension for his service in both wars (and failed). I have the replies he was sent from the MOD refering to his service file and letters from the local MP at the time who he also got involved with his case. I was worried however that maybe his records would not have been re-filed properly.

I received about 8 pages allowing me to trace his movements during the war. One of the most amazing things I discovered from this was he joined the 12th Suffolk Regiment on 24 November 1915 and was discharged 9 days later, he was then conscripted I assume and joined the RE on 22 May 1916. As he was a member of the Royal Engineers the service papers allowed me follow his movements between Field Companies, although he is not mentioned by name in the War Diaries he is noted as a transfer of other ranks between Field Companies and the dates tie in with the service records exactly. The service records also show he was admitted to hospital in Rouen in July 1918, but what I would really love to know is did he know that his brother had died and was buried Rouen 2 months before in May 1918? To my knowledge he never visited his brother's grave.

My next task is to apply for his 2WW RAF records. Anyone got any experience of how long the RAF take to deal with enquiries?

Mandy

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headgardener

Mandy, Allen, Andy;

Thanks for sharing that information.

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allen.h

I applied last year for my grandad's service records and Hall is a reasonably common surname . I sent a copy of his death certificate and a copy of his character reference from the army in 1925 when he was discharged, (although the service papers show he was in the army reserve until 1938). I also put both of his service numbers on the paper work. I think I must have been really lucky because they turned up 3 months later.

I did know that the MOD had his service papers because in the 1960s he tried to get a pension for his service in both wars (and failed). I have the replies he was sent from the MOD refering to his service file and letters from the local MP at the time who he also got involved with his case. I was worried however that maybe his records would not have been re-filed properly.

I received about 8 pages allowing me to trace his movements during the war. One of the most amazing things I discovered from this was he joined the 12th Suffolk Regiment on 24 November 1915 and was discharged 9 days later, he was then conscripted I assume and joined the RE on 22 May 1916. As he was a member of the Royal Engineers the service papers allowed me follow his movements between Field Companies, although he is not mentioned by name in the War Diaries he is noted as a transfer of other ranks between Field Companies and the dates tie in with the service records exactly. The service records also show he was admitted to hospital in Rouen in July 1918, but what I would really love to know is did he know that his brother had died and was buried Rouen 2 months before in May 1918? To my knowledge he never visited his brother's grave.

My next task is to apply for his 2WW RAF records. Anyone got any experience of how long the RAF take to deal with enquiries?

Mandy

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allen.h

MANDY

I APPLIED LAST YEAR FOR THE R,A,F. RECORDS FOR MY UNCLE K.I.A. IN 1941 WITH BOMBER COMMAND.

IT TOOK ONLY 2 MONTHS TO RECEIVE THEM. BUT THE 2 PAGES CAME WITH DOCUMENTS QUOTING PROTECTION DATA ,F.O.I ETC. ALSO ON ONE OF THE PAGES ITEMS HAD BEEN BLANKED OUT !!!

INTERESTINGLY WHEN I APPLIED TO ARMY RECORDS FOR MY OWN AND OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS DETAILS THE FULL SERVICE RECORDS WERE SUPPLIED,BUT THE TIME TAKEN WAS 6 - 9 MONTHS.

GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR RESEARCH.

ALLEN.H

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