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I'm looking for more information, and ideally photographs of uniform sorting & repair during WW1. I understand that the main depot was near Dewsbury in Yorkshire where approximately 50m garments were "processed" during the war. Discarded uniforms collected on the various battlefields were sorted and repaired and made ready for re-issue.

I'm an artist working with a group of students at Batley School of Art and want to create a large scale painting inspired by this no doubt ghastly and unpleasant but essential activity. Any help much appreciated.

Andy Farr


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Are you familiar with the role played by Major CHALKLEY M.B.E. ?

His entry in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Role of Honour:

Rank: Major
Date of Death: 17/08/1918
Regiment/Service:Army Ordnance Corps
Awards:M B E
Grave Reference: Section D. Grave 217.
Additional Information: Husband of Mrs A L Chalkley, of Kelvin Grove, Thorncliffe Road, Batley, Yorks.
Recent research has shown that Major Chalkley is buried here. The Commission is in the process of producing a headstone to mark his grave.
I would be very happy to pass on the information I have gathered, if it will be new to you.
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Thanks for the picture, I had come across it before, but saved the link now.

I'm not aware of Major CHALKLEY, I'm not local to Dewsbury, based in the Midlands so any background would be really interesting and useful if it is relevant to the Clothing Depot and sorting work.


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Major CHALKLEY was credited with being the head of what was described as one of the most remarkable war departments in the country (which you obviously have realised) and just reading the newspaper reports of his funeral, with the incredibly wide ranging list of mourners, really brings home the enormity of the Clothing Depot project.

He was a highly respected man who died at too young an age, having tried to continue working for too long while unwell - the project was so very important to him.

I will sort through what I have.

The newspaper cuttings are very difficult to read.


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  • 2 weeks later...

Terry tried to reply with my email so you could send me the information, but the site says that you can't receive messages. My email is andyfarr.artist @gmail.com

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Guest LockMorton

There is an excellent article in the Dewsbury Reporter mentions Major F H Chalkley, Chief Army Ordnance Officer,

escorting the 2nd royal visit and reports:

"garments...found to be fit for further use...were picked out and sent to the cleaners, and from there to the Ravensthorpe part-worn clothing repair factory to be repaired. Over 18,000 garments per week were being repaired there.

The staff employed at the Army Salvage Depot included 649 civilian female employees, 10 civilian male employees, besides a number of Army Ordnance Depot officers and men of the Army Ordnance Corps."


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  • 3 months later...
Yorkshire Dragoon

As a Dewsbury/Ravensthorpe lad I had no idea about this operation in my home town

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