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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Herbert Wilbourn Stoker


wilbo

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Guys, my Grandfather's service record is attached. He served as a Stoker on the Bootle, which is down as a hunt class minesweeper, as well as Vivid 2 and Dido which I know are Devonport and depot ship. I have seen photos of him on a minesweeper that I recollect as Bootle which was a converted paddle steamer. Can anyone see anything on the record that relates to that?herbertalfredwilbourn.pdf

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HMS BOOTLE, an ABERDARE Class minesweeper (not a paddler), was parented in turn by HMS VIVID II at Devonport, HMS DIDO at Harwich and HMS GANGES at Shotley, as shown on the record.

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Thanks Horatio. It is odd because I have seen a photo with him in on a paddler but It wasnt any of the above. I have been looking for the ships records on Ancestry for Bootle for 1918 to see what else I can find but they dont make it easy do they?

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HMS BOOTLE (re-named from BUCKIE) was built on the Clyde by Bow McLachlan and Co. at Paisley. The ABERDARE CLass were 800 ton, improved, mass-produced versions of the earlier HUNT Class minesweepers. BOOTLE was sold in 1923.

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Yes thanks, I have that info now. It was the operational records I was trying to find ie ships log etc. That seems to be a bit of a challenge.

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wilbo

RN ships logs are in the series ADM53 at the National Archives. BOOTLE doesn't show any there. Being a smaller craft it may well be recorded under it's Base records. In the past I have checked some reports from the BUNCRANA Base in Ireland for small patrol units. These are kept in the series ADM137. I can't recall the exact layout,but remember it featuring various incidents on patrol from the various units at sea on a given day. There are files for Harwich in ADM137 for instance.

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Thanks , I was looking in ADM53 myself but its a very long winded way of finding nothing isn't it. I did find this which I am pretty sure is the minesweeper class of which Bootle is one as said above. So it is a shame that this one is on record but not the one I want by the look of it.

  • Admiralty, and Ministry of Defence, Navy Department: Ships' Logs. ABERDARE.

    • Collection:Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies
    • Date range:21 September 1918 - 21 November 1918
    • Reference:ADM 53/32565
    • Subjects:Armed Forces (General) | Navy
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Also this but I will have to order the record for each month. Could be huge. Dido was the parent ship from 16sep to 30 nov on my Grandfathers record.

  • Admiralty, and Ministry of Defence, Navy Department: Ships' Logs. DIDO.

    • Collection:Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies
    • Date range:September 1918
    • Reference:ADM 53/39919
    • Subjects:Armed Forces (General) | Navy
  • Admiralty, and Ministry of Defence, Navy Department: Ships' Logs. DIDO.

      • Collection:Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies
      • Date range:October 1918
      • Reference:ADM 53/39920
      • Subjects:Armed Forces (General) | Navy
      • Admiralty, and Ministry of Defence, Navy Department: Ships' Logs. DIDO.

        • Collection:Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies
        • Date range:November 1918
        • Reference:ADM 53/39921
        • Subjects:Armed Forces (General) | Navy
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My dad has a photo with Fareham on his father's cap tally, but that is not on his record although it is another sweeper. Still looking for the other one on the paddler.

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The only problem with a ship's deck log (eg DIDO) is that it is just that - the deck log for that ship only. Although the log of a depot ship may record the comings and goings of her tenders (eg BOOTLE) it is very unlikely that it will record any details about their operations. HMS ABERDARE was in the Mediterranean from early October 1918 so her movements have no bearing on BOOTLE's.

HMS FAREHAM (BOOTLE's sister ship) was based on HMS VIVID from 17 Aug 1918 (she was launched two months earlier) and on HMS DIDO from 16 Sep 1919.

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Thanks H2, I have asked for a quote for Dido's records but not Aberdare. I am guessing because it is a depot ship there could be an awful lot of nothing in terms of info , but there might just be the odd nugget. A bit like war diaries. If there is too much of it I don't think I will bother.

Something I was looking at today though was the stokers with consecutive numbers to my grandfather. Most of them were colliers, either from Wales or Lancashire/Yorkshire. He


...oops.

must have had a bit of a shock being with all those professional shovellers

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Well it was £91 for Dido's records for 3 months so I don't think I will bother when the likelihood is that it will not tell me anything.

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