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Remembered Today:

Colour Sergeant


Nizzeh
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Hi there,

Don't know if I'm posting in the correct section but it is the closest I can find to the question I have.

I'd like to know how common it was for someone to be entered into the army as a Lance Corporal and then subsequently promoted to Colour Sergeant. I have no knowledge of how the ranking and/or promotion system works in the British armed forces so I'd be grateful if anyone would be ale to give me this information. I'd also like to know if I'm able to find out exactly the reason for the promotion.

Thanks,

Nizzeh

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not unusual to see this, seen it a few times on coldstream papers

he would most likely have started as a Pte and not a L/Cpl.

Could have had some previous military service and a job in civilian life that meant promoting straight to rank as he was used to managing/leading people

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In the pre war regular army probably at least twelve years to achieve Colour Sergeant rank.

During WW1 it was possible as Coldstreamer says, especially in the New Army or Pals battalions to be promoted (or appointed) Colour sergeasnt very quickly if had previous military service, leadership post in civilian life

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My Grandfather was in the Merchant Navy as a Seaman prior to WW1. As an RNVR member he was mobilised on 2 October 1914 as an Ordinary Seaman. Because of his previous experience in the Merchant Navy he saw rapid promotion to AB, LS and Petty Officer by 19 Dec 1914.

Edited by Lawryleslie
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Hi there, thanks for the replies. I don't believe he had any army experience previous to the war and there is no record of him as being a private which has surprised me.. I found the attached and again, struck me as odd that he is down as "CQMS" and another part is scribbled out and moved to C/SJT. I believe the scribbled out bit to be W.O.CL.II? Why would this be done?

Here is the image: https://gyazo.com/5e3369c82bb8cfcbfced209ec304c148

Thanks again.

Edited by Nizzeh
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Nizzeh Colour Sergeant and Company Quarter Master Sergeant were the same rank in WW1 (C.SGT being the substantive rank and CQMS being his job within the company and second in the command line to Company Sergeant Major which was WO2 rank). As neither C.SGT nor CQMS ranks were Warrant Officer appointments, my guess is that "W.O.Cl.II" was a typing error and changed to "C.SGT". This was his highest substantive rank that would appear on his medals inscription. The other less palatable explanation could be that he did achieve WOII status but was demoted for misconduct and therefore WOII would not appear on medal inscription.

Edited by Lawryleslie
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If you are talking about the LCPL reference on his Medal Index Card this simply means the rank he was when he first entered a theatre of war. In this case Gallipoli on 6 June 1915. He was likely an early war enlistment, trained at home and had been appointed LCPL by the time he deployed. Not unusual. It would be highly unusual for someone to be appointed LCPL on enlistment with no prior military service.

The reference to COL SGT simply means this was the rank he held at the end of his war service and his appointment was likely CQMS. Promotion to this rank would likely have occurred a considerable period after his appointment to LCPL and he would have progressed through CPL and SGT first.

Rgds

Tim D

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