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Bernard Conolley (sic) Group 2 Deal Reg.No.687(n) RMLC


cushybutterfield
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This is my first post on this site so apologies if I am lacking in knowledge. Bernard Connolly was my paternal grandfather died long before I was born. All oral history of him came from my father, who alway said he'd helped bury war dead in France. We knew he had served in Coldstream Guards, joining in 1885 serving 3 years with colours and 9 years in reserve. I have attestation papers for this, also his records for when he gave wrong age in 1914 & joined 2nd Tyneside Irish with the 25th Batt. of Northumberland Fusiliers. He was discharged after 167 days under Para.392(iii) medical officer stated looked older than given age of 46 and old leg injury meant unfit to train. So he never left the UK - or so I thought. For over 30 years I have had 3 photo's of him in two different types uniform, I contacted Forces War Records to identify if the photo's were Northumberland Fusiliers, I was shocked to learn it was a Royal Marines uniform. Going online at National Archives I found his record he joined the RMLC 26th March 1919 supposedly aged 39 years old when in fact he was 52. From the RM Depot he went to Bedenham and from there he went to - "Le Havre" he was there from 17th April 1919 until 3rd November 1919 then back to RM Depot 4/11/19 - 20/11/19 then D.S.T.N.R.

Is there a war diary which would say what the RMLC were doing for 6 months at Le Havre? could my father have been correct about his dad burying war dead, finally what does the abbreviation D.S.T.N.R. stand for? Any advice woud be appreciated. I tried unsuccessfully to attach his photo.

Maddy

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Discovery at TNA has Bernard Conolley joining the Royal Marines Divisional Engineers rather than the RMLI (I don't recognise RMLC, but RMLI means RM Light Infantry). Someone will probably be able to tell you whether his attestation papers, which may give more details, are available at the Fleet Air Arm Museum library and archive.

There is also, however, a Medal Index Card for Bernard Connolly, Northumberland Fusiliers http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D1907507for which I can't see any details. Any chance you are in fact working with two different people?

DSTNR I think must begin Dismissed Service and then possibly Time Not Required, though don't quote me. If the last letter is an E then it might be Time Not Extended.

sJ

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RMLC is Royal Marine Labour Corps and the (n) I think indicates the second or new formation raised.

Bootneck

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RMLC is Royal Marine Labour Corps and the (n) I think indicates the second or new formation raised.

Bootneck

Thanks for the correction - remiss of me not to remember that!

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finally what does the abbreviation D.S.T.N.R. stand for? Any advice woud be appreciated. I tried unsuccessfully to attach his photo.

SNLR would be Services No Longer Required and presumably the D would then have been Discharged

see RM abbreviations here http://www.royalmarinesmuseum.co.uk/sites/default/files/common%20abbreviations%20found%20in%20service%20documents%20(1).pdf

But I'm not sure how that 'T' fits in

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Thank you to the forum members who have replied to my query; to Sea Jane for providing the link for the medal index card, and possible explanation of DSTNR. With regards to her comment whether I was working with two different people, no it was my grandfather. As I have researched him I have been amazed at his determination to serve his country even though he had been discharged as medically unfit from the Northumberland Fusiliers as a Lance Corporal No.25 / 35 (2nd Tyneside Irish 25th Batt.Northumberland Fusiliers) Yet still willing to sign up again in 1919 with the Royal Marines - which again makes me curious as to what his duties were in Le Havre at the end of WW1.

Thank you to Bootneck for your confirmation regarding the RM Labour Corps and (n) being the new formation.

Finally my thanks to Michaeldr for providing the web links, which have proved very informative - glad you liked my forum name Michael, it was either that or the Roman name for my birthplace - Segedunum.

I am still hoping that a forum member will have information as to what the RMLC were doing in Le Havre April - Nov. 1919?

Maddy

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Hi Maddy,

I have just googled on these six words - royal marines labour corps havre 1919 - and the fifth hit on the list is a Google Books entry for Tracing your Royal Marine Ancestors / By Richard Brooks & Matthew Little. The page that comes up deals with the RMLC and provides some information as to what they were doing in Le Havre.

If it doesn't work for you let me know and I will post the link, but it's a very long one ...

sJ

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I believe this must be the book sea Jane is referring to

51GtlHkkIJL._SX351_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

Can be obtained HERE

regards Ray

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There is also H. E. Blumberg’s, Britain’s Sea Soldiers: A Record of the Royal Marines during the War 1914-1919 (1927, reprinted 2007) while Ivor Lee and John Sterling in No Labour, No Battle: Military Labour during the First World War (London, 2009), although only mentioning the RMLC twice is extremely useful as an overview of military labour during the war. As I remember the Royal Marines Historical Society have published a couple of articles on RMLC in their journal The Sheet Anchor.

SJ, I know it’s off topic but you are probably well aware of Peter Grindal’s new book Opposing the Slavers?

Bootneck

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No, I missed that! Oh damn, I hope he hasn't stolen my thunder on one particular episode ... [edit: have checked with colleague - no, he hasn't.]

OK, revenons a nos moutons Pals ...

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An attestation pack of his papers is held at the Fleet Air Arm Museum. He was discharged Surplus To Naval Requirements (STNR), as were most men of the RMLC (New Formation) when it was disbanded in late 1919/early 1920.

The RMLC were employed as dockyard labour, the Old Formation 1917-1918 and the New Formation post-war.

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My thanks to sea Jane and raysearcher for pointing me in the direction of the book Tracing Your Royal Marine Ancestors. As advised by s J I googled the book, but although Le Havre was mentioned it seemed the facts given were about the RMLC distributed around various French Ports during the war. The book even stated they sometimes came under aerial bombardment, but only a few of their 134 fatalities arose from enemy action, some being accidental but most from disease reflecting the advanced age of the men. As my grandfather Bernard Conolley (sic) only enlisted on 26/3/1919 I was surprised he was sent over to France.

I have made a note of all the ref. books mentioned by Bootneck, thank you I will try and obtain the RMHS journal Sheet Anchor

Thank you Horatio2 for explaining the RMLC were employed as dockyard labour - this would fit his experience back home on Tyneside where he worked in the shipyards. You also mentioned about an attestation pack of papers for him held at the Fleet Air Arm Museum - Is it possible to apply for these?

Kind regards to everyone

Maddy

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Thank you sea Jane, I have sent an email this afternoon with details of of grandfather, and a request to purchase if possible his attestation papers. I have been very impressed by the kindness and knowledge of the members of this forum. Although I have been researching family and friend's family histories for many years delving into all sorts of obscure records, I have never had to do any complicated military research. I am embarrassed to have committed a basic mistake - assume 'nowt'. The fact that I had all those papers concerning granddad's army records I assumed the photo's were of him in a Northumberland Fusilier uniform. A mistake I won't make in future - check everything.

Maddy

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