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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

RAMC 64th West Lancs Field Ambulance


SloopJB

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I am interested to learn how the Field Ambulance units within the RAMC were deployed in particular the 64th.

Were they asigned to a particular regiment which they followed throughout all their campagins.

I have an 64th Field ambulance demob paper where the 126 Field Company of the Royal Engineers is crossed out.

Would the 64th Field ambulance and the 126 Field Engineers been affiliated in some was maybe also with an infantry regiment.

How do I research the history of the Field Ambulance unit ?

Any information or advice much appreciated. Sloop.

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Sloop,

This link QUICK CLICK may be of interest. This is the RAMC in the Great War Database apparently sponsored by the Army Medical Services Museum. I have heard of the database before but not looked at it. It seems a large (very large) project 'in progress'. The 64th Field Ambulance appears to be the 2/3rd (edited from my original mistake) West Lancashire Field Ambulance by another name. I don't think that it actually served with the 55th (West Lancashire) Division or the 57th (Second West Lancashire) Division (but will check tomorrow)

If it served overseas there should be a war diary in the National Archive and the ADMS diary (Assistant Director of Medical Services) diary for the division in which it served may be of interest

Ian

PS One last gasp before I go to bed: both 64th Field anbulance and 126th Field Company Royal Engineers appear to have been with the 21st Division and there are links to their catalogue entries in the National Archive war diaries here I haven't checked but I would just expect to find the catalogue reference for the NA and not the war diaries themselves. For that you will need to visit, send a researcher or get copies (can be expensive!)

Ian

Edited by Ian Riley
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Sloop,

64th Field Ambulance was originally 2/3rd West Lancs Field Ambulance. It was formed in St. Helens in Sept 1914. 1/3rd WLFA had been a St. Helens Territorial unit since 1908. I have been researching this unit for some years as my grandfather enlisted with 2/3 WLFA in Nov 1914 when he was 16. 64FA, together with 63FA and 65FA served with 21st Division, arriving overseas in time to assist with the final casualties at Loos. I would be interested to see the demob paper if you could PM me a copy. If there is anything specific you want to know then ask.

regards

Dave

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi! Just seen this query and thought I might have my penn'orth. I have been researching the 101st Field Ambulance which was attached to the 33rd Division from October 1915 (November in France), thereby meeting members of the other units who were part of the Division, but not being attached to specific regiments etc.. The 99th and 100th were also attached to the 33rd, although almost immediately the 100th was replaced by the 19th F A and then the same three (19th, 99th and 101st) were together right through the war. Often personnel were temporarily switched between the three F As. My father was temporarily attached to the 19th, from the 101st, in October 1918 when he received a Blighty wound and was in hospital in Scotland when the Armistice came. I believe that it was fairly general that three Field Ambulance units served with a Division.

John

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  • 1 year later...

Hi,

I've been researching the war history of a relative, Thomas WORRALL, 95751.

My current understanding is that he served with the 51st Brigade RFA, who were part of the 9th (Scottish) Division.

Thomas died of his wounds on 25th April 1918, and his obituary in the local newspaper stated:

"Everything possible was done for him, but he died on the way to the dressing station. He was buried at Dickebusch, near Ypres."

A few years ago I obtained the war diaries for the 51st Brigade, and they matched Thomas' obituary very nicely, as they indicated that Thomas' Battery were operating very close to Dickebusch on the day of his death.

Recently, I also obtained his death certificate. I wasn't expecting any surprises, just a reinforcement of the information that I already have, but the death certificate gave the place of death as:

"64 West Lancs Field Ambulance, France"

I wasn't expecting that. I was expecting something like "Western Front", or just "France / Flanders".

I then started to think that maybe some of my information was wrong, as I couldn't link "64 Field Ambulance" to the 9th (Scottish) Division, but then google found this forum post.

I notice from this post that the 64th Field Ambulance was assigned to the 21st Division, and I know that the 21st fought in the Second Battle of Kemmel, which would place them very, very close to where Thomas died.

Firstly, do you know if it was normal for soldiers to be treated by Field Ambulances assigned to other divisions?

Secondly, my next step would be to obtain the war diaries for the "64 Field Ambulance" for around 25 April 1918. In the past I've purchased war diaries from the National Archives, but that was when they would copy pages for particular dates without the need to employ a researcher. Do you know of anyone that would have these war diaries?

Thanks for your help,

Gary Shooter

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Firstly, do you know if it was normal for soldiers to be treated by Field Ambulances assigned to other divisions?

They would be treated by the nearest unit but medical facilities were often appointed to support other divisions, especially if there was to be a large assault.

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  • 8 months later...
  • 1 year later...

Regarding the possible jump between 64th Fd Amb and 126 Fd Coy RE, this may be a case of being attached for water duties, if you check the medal index card there may be a lettered prefix before the number.

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  • 1 year later...
Guest bluepetewill

I am trying to research the 64th Field Ambulance, in which my Grandfather (William Walker) served from 1914 to 18. I know that it was attached to the 21st Division, for the duration, but can anyone point me in the direction of any more detailed information with regards where the unit may have been located at any specific time. I also have some on the reunion dinner programmes for the "Soixante Quartre" if anyone is interested in perhaps seeing copies?

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Hello bluepetewill, and welcome to the Forum!

The War Diaries of the medical units of 21st Division are in the National Archives at Kew in these files:

WO 95/2147 Divisional Troops
WO 95/2147 63 Field Ambulance 1915 Aug. - 1919 May
WO 95/2147 64 Field Ambulance 1915 Aug. - 1919 May

WO 95/2148 Divisional Troops
WO 95/2148 65 Field Ambulance 1915 Aug. - 1919 June
WO 95/2148 Divisional Field Ambulance Workshop Unit 1915 Oct. - 1916 Mar.
WO 95/2148 38 Sanitary Section 1915 Sept. - 1917 Mar.

You should be able to download them from their website, www.nationalarchives.gov.uk, for about £3.50. War Diaries rarely mention men by name other than officers but the location of the unit, and a brief description of its activities, is usually given for each day.

Good luck!

Ron

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Hi bluepeterwill,

After the diary for the 64th Field Ambulance, if you wanted a slightly higher level view, I'd be tempted to go for the diary of the Assistant Director Medical Services (21st Division) - WO 95/2140/1

Regards

Chris

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  • 10 months later...
On 21/11/2015 at 09:54, bluepetewill said:

I am trying to research the 64th Field Ambulance, in which my Grandfather (William Walker) served from 1914 to 18. I know that it was attached to the 21st Division, for the duration, but can anyone point me in the direction of any more detailed information with regards where the unit may have been located at any specific time. I also have some on the reunion dinner programmes for the "Soixante Quartre" if anyone is interested in perhaps seeing copies?

Hi bluepetewill,

I've just seen this. I would be very interested in seeing info on reunion dinners. I've been researching 64FA for some years as my grandfather enlisted with them in 1914. W Walker is in a photo during training at Lytham St Anne's in March 1915.

regards

Dave

Edited by DaveR
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Hello Dave

 

The War Diary reference for 64 Field Ambulance is given in post number 10. It can be downloaded from the National Archives website. It should give the location of the unit each day, but probably only starts when they went overseas.

 

Ron

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Ron,

I have the War Diary thanks.

Dave

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  • 5 months later...

As always either late to the party or on parade - but wow :o - wonderful information and it's sorted my problem out, now I know what the WL stands for on his record - another soldier done so on to the next. BRILLLIANT :D

 

thanks and take care, Kitty

Edited by Kitty55
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