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Remembered Today:

Pte. Frederick Luce Petty (Rifle Brigade)


miliwis
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Hi There,

I've been corresponding with the granddaughter of a Frederick Luce Pretty who has told me that her grandfather served with 1st Battalion Rifle Brigade, and was said to have enlisted in 1914, or earlier, at a young age. I found his medal index card which suggests he didn't go overseas before 1916, and had been assigned the service number 6/401. He was born in late 1895 in London, and I'm wondering if his service number corresponds with the story that he signed up just before the war?

Any clues you could offer up would be greatly appreciated, as this is related to something I'm working on with the children at our village school.

Best wishes,

Scott

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Scott

He only ever served abroad with 3 Battalion. The 6 Prefix is for Special Reservists so he may have signed up for the part time role in 1914 or earlier but been held back in the UK helping train new recruits etc until 1916 or later. I don't really know about enlistment dates for the SR numbers.

Glen

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Hi Glen,

That's fantastic. It looks very much like this is our man, I'm guessing 'Luce' might also be recorded as 'Louis', and I'm not sure where the reference to the 1st Battalion came from. There certainly aren't any other 'candidates'. He was said to have seen action on the Somme and then Ypres.

Thanks again sir!

Best,

Scott

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Hi Glen,

I've just found another medal card for a 'P' Pretty with exactly the same service number and battalion, but who arrived in France on 23 October 1914. The same man?

Best,

Scott

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Scott

It is also recorded as "P" in the original 1914 Star roll. I'd probably rely more on the number being accurate than a possible typo with F and P looking very similar to a harassed clerk filling in page after page of the rolls.

I know the TF took men as young as 17 so perhaps the SR did too. If so he could have joined up before 1914. Either way, to have made itto France so quidkly, he must have had some military training and probably more than any single summer camp which may, or may not, have taken place in 1914.

The war diary is available to download from TNA. Depending on which period you want,the period up to October 1915 can be found at

http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/Details?uri=C7352348

and for the rest of the war

http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/Details?uri=C4555357

Glen

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Hi Glen,

Yes, apparently he joined up aged about 16 or 17 (so about 1912 onwards) but said he was 17 1/2. Either way it sound pre-war. I shall have look through the rolls you sent which were gratefully received.

Best wishes,

Scott

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