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RFC Henley-on-Thames Personnel

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This is maybe a long shot but I am trying to trace any families/surviving relatives who had family members that served with Royal Flying Corps & RAF from November 1917 to 1918 - 1920 either with the Equipment Officers School of Instruction (EOSI) or the Technical Officers School of Instruction (TOSI) at Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire. I have found the following who served their and if any people recognize any names then I would be very pleased to hear from you as I am trying to compile a possible profile for each person including photographs etc I have found the following on find my past and from local papers of the time. I know that some names have already appeared on the forum.

Arthur Dunscombe Allen - EOSI ?

Arthur Elliott Allen - EOSI

Albert Apsley - ?

Percy Charles Beardwood - TOSI

Douglas John Beaumont - EOSI, TOSI

Frederick William Beaumont - TOSI

Arnold Bevan - TOSI

Harold Gwynne Bill - TOSI

Howard Bridgewater - ?

Norman William Chandler - TOSI

Leonard Victor Charlton - TOSI

George MacCallum Cherry - EOSI, TOSI

Sydney Joseph Collcutt - EOSI, TOSI

Richard Gibson Dalziel - EOSI, TOSI

Gerald Iredale Newenham Deane - EOSI, TOSI

Felton Broomall Elkins - EOSI

Thomas William Esland - EOSI, TOSI

George Norman Faux-Powell - TOSI

Nathan Feather - EOSI, TOSI

William Walker Frederickson - TOSI

Herbert Charles Gaze - EOSI, TOSI

Donat O'Brien Gill - EOSI, TOSI

Ralph Percy Gosnell - EOSI, TOSI

William Haddon - ?

Charles Theodore Auldjo Hart - EOSI

Joseph Histed - TOSI

Charles Henry Ivatts - TOSI

Walter Laidler - TOSI

Brian Bertie Lemon - TOSI

Walter Meader - EOSI?, TOSI

Harry Anderson Moncrieff - TOSI

F Muff - TOSI

James Alfred Payne - EOSI, TOSI

W Ponting - EOSI

Raymond Ernest Pudney - EOSI

Geoffrey Jervis Read - EOSI, TOSI

Samuel Arthur Read - EOSI

Frederick Rookhurst Roberts - EOSI, TOSI

Henry S Shaw - EOSI

Frederick Stuart Smith - EOSI, TOSI

Leonard Herbert Straker - EOSI

William Grey Stuart - TOSI

Henry Robert Stubbington - TOSI

Stanley Gibson Tackaberry - EOSI

William Harvey Evelyn Thomas - EOSI

Joshua Richard Turner - TOSI

Henry Carmichael Tweedie - EOSI, TOSI

Herbert Richard White - TOSI

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Hi Autogiro, welcome to the Forum, and good luck with your query. You've gathered an impressive list of names.

I'm afraid that I can't help, but I would be interested to know a little more about the TOSI and EOSI at Henley-on-Thames - exactly where they were based, for instance. Henley must have been a pleasant place to have been instructed, and if one didn't care for the river and countryside the "fleshpots" of Reading and London weren't far away by train.

(I have Googled, but nothing relevant came up, though the first "hits" did refer straight back to your query.)


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The EOSI arrived in the town in October/November 1917 having relocated from Reading and as far as I know the TOSI was formed on the 1st April 1918. Both I believe used the Royal Hotel, The Imperial Hotel and also Phyllis Court Club (garages may have been used here to store equipment and for teaching aircraft rigging, engine maintenance etc possibly with a Sopwith Camel B9990 and Avro 504 A5940) in and around the town and also the Grosvenor Club in Remenham. The Hotels I believe would have been for accommodation and classrooms. I have gathered quite a bit of information about the school and there is more to discover I am sure as Kew have some documentation.


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Thanks, Autogiro. Your post confirms my suggestion that it was a nice posting: very pleasant accommodation, close to the shops, pubs and Thames.


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Guest Lesley Searle


I have recently discovered that two of my grandparents worked here, and this may even have been where they met. My grandfather Flight Sergeant George Arthur Longbotham was a carpenter who served in the RFC from 16/05/15, transferring to the RAF on 01/04/18 as Chief Mechanic (Service No. 5500), and paid the grand sum of 7 shillings a week. He was initially at the Training Officers School of Instruction, I believe at Wantage Hall, Reading, which belonged to Reading University.

My grandmother enlisted to the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps on 03/11/17 as a clerk in the Equipment Officer's School of Instruction at Henley on Thames, later being promoted to forewoman. She enlisted as Mrs Daisy East, but was born Charlotte Annie Daisy Smith. Her WAAC service no. was 15327 and her WRAF number was 7828 when she transferred on 01/04/18.

I would be very interested in any details of what went on at TOSI/EOSI, particularly about the transfer from Reading to Henley.

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Hi Lesley

I have sent a PM to you.

I have not to much information on the move from Reading to Henley only so far that it happened at the end of October beginning of November 1917.

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I have just started researching Donat O'Brien Gill, who is a very very distant connection to me, not a blood relative. No photos. He was born 16 Dec 1886 (or 1887, but his sister Finola Marie Gill was born 12 Aug 1887 in London) at New York, New York, to Thomas Patrick Gill, Irish politician and sometimes journalist/editor; and his wife Annie Fennell. You can google the father, usually as T P Gill. Donat was at Trinity College Dublin, a Junior Sophister, in 1909, with brother Roy Anthony Furlong Gill. In the 1891 census the three children were at home at 7 The Grove, Clapham, London, without their parents. In 1901 and 1911 Donat was at home with his parents in Dublin. In 1911 his occupation was civil engineer. His grandfather, Robert Gill (1826-1893) of Nenagh, Tipperary, was a County Surveyor and Town Engineer at Toperary. The family were Roman Catholic. According to his medal card, Donat was a Lieutenant, 139th ATC Royal Engineers; and RAF. RFC is also recorded on the card. France 8 Aug 1915. Donat Gill died in 1947 at Dublin.

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Hi Autogiro

I am currently transcribing letters and documents of 2nd Lieut JH Loveridge who was posted to the school (EOSI) in December 1917 - passing out in March 1918.



I have a double interest in this as I have worked in Henley-on-Thames for many years - if fact I work not far from the old Imperial Hotel. I wonder in the Grosvenor club is what in now the Remenham club -of course it could be a previous name of Leander club









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