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RussT

Territorial Force War Medal - Eligibility

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RussT

There appears to be a couple of definitions kicking around defining the eligibility criterion for the TFWM.

The LLT and some other sites found via googling define it along these lines:

It was instituted in 1920 and only applicable to men or women who had served in a unit of the Territorial Force. To qualify, the soldier must have completed four years or more service prior to 4 August 1914, and if not still serving must have re-joined by 30 September 1914; they must have agreed to serve overseas by the same date; they must have served overseas at some point up to and including 11 November 1918; and they must not have otherwise qualified for a 1914 or 1914-15 Star.

The National Archives and some other sites found via googling define it along these lines:

The Territorial Force War Medal 1914-1919 was awarded to members of the Territorial Force only. To qualify, the recipient had to have been a member of the Territorial Force on or prior to 30 September 1914, and to have served in an operational theatre outside of the United Kingdom between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918,

These are two very different definitions.

Can someone please confirm categorically which is correct. I suspect it is the former definition given the relatively low number (circa 34000 I think) awarded - and what/where is the source reference for the correct definition?

Regards

Russ

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Guest
From the Medal Yearbook (2001) page 165


Territorial Force War Medal


" Granted to all members of the Territorial Force embodied before 30th September 1914, who had completed 4 years service by that date, and who had served outside the United Kingdom between 4th August 1914 and 11th November 1918. Those who had already qualified for the 1914 or 1914-1915 stars, however, were excluded. Only 34,000 medals were awarded, making it by far the scarcest of the First World War Medals. "


Mike

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centurion

Definition 1 encompasses definition 2 ie if you fail either you fail both

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NigelS

This from The Times of February 12th 1920:

The King has been pleased to approve the issue of a special medal to all members of the Territorial Force who were serving on August 4, 1914 and to all ex-members of the Territorial Force who had served for a period of not less than four years in the Territorial Force before the war, and who rejoined the Force on the outbreak of war, provided (1) that they undertook to serve overseas on or before September 30, 1914, and were passed as physically fit and accepted for service overseas; and (2) that they are not entitled to the award of the 1914 Star or the 1914-15 Star. An Army Order with reference to this special medal will be issued shortly.
Many members of the Territorial Force have already been awarded the 1914-15 Star, and they will be eligible for the British War and Victory Medals. The new medal, which was approved by the King yesterday afternoon, will be awarded to those members of the Force coming within the scope specified in the official notice who served in India and other overseas garrisons outside the theatre of war.

The final paragraph perhaps clarifies the reason for its issue, but not the conditions for its award, my reading of the first paragraph indicates that, if a man was actually serving with the TF on the 4th August 1914, the 4 years prior service didn't apply provided overseas (Imperial) service had been undertaken (& approved) before 30th September '14. Does 'accepted for service overseas' necessarily mean that a man would actually have had to have served overseas to have qualified for the medal though?

NigelS

NigelS

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NigelS

Should have looked a bit further on, this from The Times of the 28th April 1920:

The conditions on which the Territorial Force Medal will be granted have now been embodied in an Army Order. The medal will be granted to all members of the T.F. and T.F. Nursing Service who were serving with the T.F. on August 4, 1914, or who had completed not less than four years’ service with the T.F. before August 4 and rejoined that Force before September 30, 1914, provided that they undertook on or before September 30, 1914, to serve outside the United Kingdom between August 5, 1914 and November 11, 1918, and did not qualify for the 1914 Star or 1914-15 Star. Officers i/c records will prepare nominal rolls of individuals entitled to the medal and forward them to the War Office.

Officers and nurses not now serving should submit their claims direct to the Secretary, War Office, (A.G.10); those now serving should apply through their present commanding officers or heads of departments. In the case of deceased officers, nurses, and other ranks, application should be made by their legatees or next-of-kin to the Secretary, war Office (A.G.10) in the case of officers, and to the officer i/c Records concerned in the case of nurses and other ranks.

Reading between the lines, there must have been confusion over this award back then as well as, from December 17th, 1921,

An Army Order cancels the condition that those otherwise eligible for the grant of the Territorial Force War Medal must have been passed as physically fit for service overseas between August 4 and September 30, 1914, both dates inclusive.

The medal is now available to all members of the Territorial Force and Territorial Force Nursing Service who were serving with the Force on August 4, 1914, or had completed not less than four years’ service with the Force before that date and rejoined on or before September 30, 1914, provided the undertook on or before this latter date to serve outside the United Kingdom; actually served outside the United Kingdom between August 5, 1914, and November 11, 1918; and did not qualify for the “1914 Star” or “1914-15 Star.”

The punctuation of: 'serve outside the United Kingdom; actually served outside' , at least to me, doesn't really help

NigelS

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clive_hughes

This at least clarifies that those who were members of the TF on 4 August 1914 were eligible (if Imperial Service volunteers pre-30 Sept and with overseas service 1916 or later), regardless of how long they had been serving. The 4-year qualification applied to ex-members who were rejoining, but is often misapplied as the minimum pre-war service qualification. I can think immediately of a couple of those who gained this medal who weren't 4-year veterans prior to 1914.

In terms of "overseas", leaving the UK (incl. Ireland) was what counted, as in the qualification for award of the British War Medal. To set foot in France was enough: but to land in India, Gibraltar or other non-active theatre would also be sufficient to gain both a BWM and TFWM. Indeed we have seen somewhere on this Forum research relating to a BWM/TFWM pair to someone who never got off his troopship, but was drowned in the Mediterranean when it was torpedoed.

Clive

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RussT

Many thanks for everyone's feedback - the various definitions appear to be quite ambiguous, and I'm sort of pleased that perhaps it's not only me that is a little confused.

Indeed from the discussions above it apparently emerges that neither of the two definitions, which I had quoted from elsewhere, are correct.

I forgot that I had a copy of Howard Williamson's "The Great War Medal Collector's Companion", so I've just had a peek in there (sorry - I should have consulted it before posting - nevertheless at least this topic may help others with the same/similar query in the future).

Assuming Williamson's hefty tome quotes accurately the eligibility criteria (and as per his quoted source of AO 143, 1920 published 26th April 1920), then, in short:

1) Granted to members of the TF & TF Nursing Service who volunteered for service overseas on or before the 30th September 1914, and who rendered such service during the war of 1914-19, and who:

2A) were serving with the TF on the 4th August 1914 or

2B) had completed a period of not less than 4 years service with the TF before the 4th August 1914 and re-joined that Force on or before the 30th September 1914,

provided that they:

i) undertook either verbally or by written agreement, on or before the 30th September 1914, to service outside the UK, such agreement being operative after the 4th August 1914 and,

ii) were passed as physically fit for service overseas between the 4th August and 30th September 1914, both dates inclusive, and,

iii) served outside the UK between the 5th August 1914 and 11th November 1918, both dates inclusive, and,

iv) did not qualify for the award of the 1914 Star or the 1914-1915 Star.

As pointed out by Clive above, the important word is "or" in Clause (2A) which, as noted, means to me that a TF member serving on 4th August 1914 (irrespective of the length of his/her previous TF service) would be eligible (as long as the other criteria are also met).

Russ

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ss002d6252
As pointed out by Clive above, the important word is "or" in Clause (2A) which, as noted, means to me that a TF member serving on 4th August 1914 (irrespective of the length of his/her previous TF service) would be eligible (as long as the other criteria are also met).

I would agree, it seems to have been worded to allow the re-enlisted members a bit of lee way in the qualifying dates whilst also allowing any pre-war, currently serving, men to qualify.

Craig

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bill24chev
From the Medal Yearbook (2001) page 165
Territorial Force War Medal
" Granted to all members of the Territorial Force embodied before 30th September 1914, who had completed 4 years service by that date, and who had served outside the United Kingdom between 4th August 1914 and 11th November 1918. Those who had already qualified for the 1914 or 1914-1915 stars, however, were excluded. Only 34,000 medals were awarded, making it by far the scarcest of the First World War Medals. "
Mike

I was under the impression that if a TF soldier signed the Imperial Service declaration it was unlikely that you would still be in the UK by the end of 1915. I wonder what the 34K men were doing between September1914 and December1915 in the UK?

I assume they would be deemed important to be retained at the TF Depots or with 2nd line units as instructors and the like.

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ss002d6252
I was under the impression that if a TF soldier signed the Imperial Service declaration it was unlikely that you would still be in the UK by the end of 1915. I wonder what the 34K men were doing between September1914 and December1915 in the UK?

It does seem quite a few men but I suppose once you spread them out it's not actually that great a number - instructors, men who were ill/injured, men who were utilised for various depot duties.

Craig

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Sue Light

- instructors, men who were ill/injured, men who were utilised for various depot duties.

Members of the Territorial Force Nursing Service :)

Sue

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Terry_Reeves

Not every member of the TF met the qualification of course. There were those who did not volunteer for overseas service in August/ September 1914 for instance.

TR

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David Porter

I wonder what the 34K men were doing between September1914 and December1915 in the UK?

They were defending the East Coast and that is what the medal recognises. There are many RHA TF batteries that qualified for that reason.

The verbal agreement clause was used to some effect by those that signed E624 after the cut off date. If there was a good relationship with the commanding officer he would say that you verbally agreed before September 30th 1914 despite not signing the form before that date. I have an example of someone signing the E624 in February 1915 who still managed to persuade the War Office via his commanding officer that he verbally agreed before the cut off date and got his medal.

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Steven Broomfield

I was under the impression that if a TF soldier signed the Imperial Service declaration it was unlikely that you would still be in the UK by the end of 1915. I wonder what the 34K men were doing between September1914 and December1915 in the UK?

I assume they would be deemed important to be retained at the TF Depots or with 2nd line units as instructors and the like.

Most of them were in India. Three divisions (1st Wessex and 2nd Wessex and 1st Home Counties - later the 43rd, 45th and 44th respectively) went to India to replace Regulars who had come home. As very few saw fighting action in 194/15 (many went to various theatres after 1915), they were ineligible for the various Stars, but were eligible for the TWFM.

My wife's grand-father (1/7th Hampshires) had one.

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centurion

I was under the impression that if a TF soldier signed the Imperial Service declaration it was unlikely that you would still be in the UK by the end of 1915. I wonder what the 34K men were doing between September1914 and December1915 in the UK?

I assume they would be deemed important to be retained at the TF Depots or with 2nd line units as instructors and the like.

My Great Uncle was in the TF before the war started. He was in the yeomanry and the regiment didn't get sent overseas until 1916 (by which time he progressed from trooper to 2nd Lt) AFAIK whilst he and the rest of his unit had signed up for imperial service by the time they has sufficient horses etc the trenches were being dug in France and the need for Yeomanry was not pressing. He went to Egypt where he was given a camel and sent to the western desert, then they turned him into infantry (and he took part in 1 & 2 Gaza) and eventually artillery (with command of a couple of batteries of medium trench mortars which he commanded at 3 Gaza and then as far as Syria). Off to France in time for the breaking of the Hindenburg line and then back to the yeomanry in peace as a captain. The army managed to kill him in the early 1920s with a botched appendectomy at an officers hospital! But he did get the Territorial Medal and doesn't seem to have spent any time as an instructor or the like.

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Guest
Lichfield Mercury - Friday 30 December 1921


Territorial Force War Medal


" An Army Order cancels the condition that those otherwise eligible for the grant of the Territorial Force War Medal must have been passed as physically fit for service overseas between August 4th and 30th September 1914. The medal is now available to all members of the Territorial Force and Territorial Force Nursing Service who were serving with the Force on August 4th, 1914, or had completed not less than four years' service with the Force before that date and rejoined on or before September 30th, 1914, provided they undertook on or before this latter date to serve outside the United Kingdom, actually served outside the United Kingdom between August 5th 1914, and November 11th, 1918, and did not qualify for the 1914 Star or 1914-15 Star. "


Mike

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RussT

Mike - thanks.

Yes, I had wondered why that clause 2B(ii), as above in post #7, was needed. It seemed to me superfluous at best and just damn right mean at worst (if there were indeed to have been members going oversees having been assessed as physically unfit, which I imagine wouldn't have happened ......unless?).

Russ

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clive_hughes

There must have been more than 34,000 such men in the UK - these are just the ones who did eventually get overseas, not the ones who didn't!

Interestingly all four of the existing Welsh Yeomanries (Denbighshire, Glamorganshire, Montgomeryshire, Pembrokeshire) served overseas (Egypt) from 1916 and so qualified for a good few of the TFWMs, while the new August-1914-raised Welsh Horse got to Gallipoli in Autumn 1915 and earned the Star.

Is it possible that an Imperial Service Form might have been signed some time after an original verbal statement had been made, putting on paper what already existed? On 11 August 1914 "C" Squadron of the Denbighshire Hussars was paraded in Bangor and the men were asked by their CO to volunteer for overseas service by taking one step forward. All except 2 or 3 did so. I expect forms were duly signed afterwards, but how long after?

Clive

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ss002d6252
Is it possible that an Imperial Service Form might have been signed some time after an original verbal statement had been made, putting on paper what already existed?

There was a case with the 6th Devonshire battalion where this happened - they were still fighting for recognition in the 1930's.

From what I can gather they were on the way overseas before they had all signed the paperwork, having verbally agreed to go before he cut off date. The actual paperwork (E264 was signed until after the cut-off date).

Craig

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Michael Johnson

My wife's grandfather enlisted in 1913 into the Civil Service Rifles. He qualified for the 1914-15 Star (wounded at Loos), but after emigrating to Canada he proudly wore the ribbons for the trio and TFWM throughout his Second War R.C.A.F. service, and doesn't appear to have been called on it.

His service record includes an application for the TFWM and Territorial Efficiency Medal, but I assume both were refused (by my reckoning he would have been a few months shy of 12 years, counting war service as double).

Michael

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Loader

I was told once that one Bn of the TF kept their best cook at home for several yrs of the war to serve the Officers' Mess! I gues they felt that infantrymen were a dime a dozen but a good cook.......Well there you are!

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mcassell

Quite a number of soldiers qualified for the TFWM by being underage when the battalion went overseas. For example, Private Robert Gray, enlisted in the 1/5 Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders on 24 March 1914, age 17 years 9 months. He was embodied on 5 August 1914 and agreed to serve overseas on 6 September 1914 but did not accompany the 1/5 Argylls to Egypt and Gallipoli because he was underage (though he appears to have been just a few weeks shy of his 19th birthday). However, he met the conditions for the award of the Territorial Force War Medal. He remained at the Depot, being appointed Acting Corporal on 19 December 1914, Acting Lance Sergeant on 27 February 1915 and acting Sergeant on 22 May 1915. Sergeant Gray was posted to the 1/5 Argylls in Egypt on 10 January 1916, arriving 27 January 1916, when he reverted to Private.


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patrick Eggs

The TF medal,is hard one to track down, My Dad was in the TF from 1908 for a period of at least 5 years ,at the start of the War in 1914 embodied the service (the term stated in his army papers).served in France with the MGC/Heavy branch (Tank Corps) wounded at Boulon Wood November 1917.returned to the Uk , Then returned to France with The 17th Armoured Car Bt. so that was 2 trips to France then after arriving in Calogne , the 17th AC were shipped of to Ireland , But as mentioned Ireland is classed as a Home posting.

All the papers that I have show letters going from one and another ,but still no TF medal shows up on his MIC , this gives very little detail on it only the 2 main medals and no star.

People say remember the blitz of WW2 and many records would have been destroyed . any thoughts on this .Or is it just the confused area of the TF medal.

Crimson Rambler

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ss002d6252
My Dad was in the TF from 1908 for a period of at least 5 years ,at the start of the War in 1914 embodied the service (the term stated in his army papers).served in France with the MGC/Heavy branch (Tank Corps) wounded at Boulon Wood November 1917.returned to the Uk

Did he agree to the Imperial Service Obligation before Sep 14 (or even at all ?)

Craig

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Guest

If a man had the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal could he also be eligible for the Territorial Force War Medal? I recall being told by a medal dealer that the former precluded the latter, but I may have been misinformed or misunderstood. Man in avatar had the former as well as the 1914-15 Star (among others) and I see 1914-15 Star precluded the TF medal. Still wondering about the TFEM, but maybe I misunderstood the advice....

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