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Remembered Today:

21st Battalion the Manchester Regt in Italy


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My father's records show that he was posted to Italy with the 21st Battalion on 19th January 1919 and remained there until the Battalion returned to the UK on the 29th February 1919.

What were the 21st Battalion doing in Italy given that the war had then been over for more than two months.

I did raise this question some years ago but at the time had to leave my research for a while and I don't think a reasonable conclusion was reached. Would appreciate any information as my father (7565 Pte H Boyd) never even mentioned that he had been in Italy, was it maybe something to do with War Graves?

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The 21st Battalion Regimental History records that they left Italy on 13 September 1918 reaching Neuilly near Abbeville on 16 September 1918.

On 3 January 1919 they left Bethencourt and proceeded to Poix du Nord where it remained until 19 February 1919. On 20th they went to Cambrai where they pretty much remained until returning to England

See also




PS. Just looked at his papers and it does appear he re-enlisted in the 21st, then posted to Depot, then to 2nd Battalion. Odd.

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Thanks Graeme, all a bit mysterious to me too.

24 September 1917 posted to 21st Battalion

19 January 1919 Sent to Italy (21st Battalion)

28 February 1919 Posted to the Depot. I did see somewhere (but right now can't remember where) that the 21st left Italy and returned to the England on this date, that would tally with his return. The big question remains of course, What were they doing in Italy at this time?

4 June 1919 Posted to the 2nd Battalion

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Clearly an error in the records. The battalion had left Italy in September 1918 for France, where it remained until the cadre returned to Britain in July 1919.

I guess the battalion should be the 22nd, which remained in Italy until after the Armistice. Alastair Cowan's recent history of the battalion indicates that drafts started to return to Britain from 23 December 1918. There was service in Austria before the battalion moved to Egypt, where it remained until March 1920.

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