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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Role of a Battery Rough Rider


charlie962
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I am looking at the record of an RFA Sergeant (James Lipton) who in 1918 has on his service record notes of extra pay in several months as "battery rough rider"; before the war he was a carman.

I am assuming this is for someone who has to break-in horses rather than racing round the front carrying messages. Previous threads have mentioned this title but without a clear explanation. Can anyone properly define the duties?

Thanks in advance

Charlie

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First of all, "roughs" were unbacked, untrained horses.

 

The "rough-rider"'s first duty was to train the horses to the task, that of pulling the guns/ gun limbers or ammunition wagons. His second duty was to train the riders.

 

In modern times posher titles such as "equestrian instructor" have crept in, such as for my daughter, who was a senior equestrian Instructor for the Metropolitan Police.

 

 

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Some years ago I asked a B & R Sergeant wearing a worsted spur badge above his chevrons if he was a "rough rider". His reply was that he preferred to referred to as a Riding Instructor.

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Corporal, corporal major etc

Thanks for the replies. Is the spur badge worn by a Battery Rough Rider ? If so just for the odd months he carried out these paid duties?

Charlie

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I don't have the Peace Establishments for artillery, only War.

 

For the War estabs, there is no Rough Rider established but ...................

 

........................The Pay Warrant allows a man to be paid an extra 6d per day for each battery if appointed RR.

 

I would expect the badge to be worn under those circumstances.

 

 

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22 hours ago, Muerrisch said:

if B & R is Blues and Royals, sergeant?

 

Nah!

I was wondering when someone would notice that....

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RFA batteries would normally receive horses already broken and trained, but I imagine a rough-rider would come in handy if any of the horses bolted or became skittish in proximity to gunfire, especially if they had only just joined the battery.

 

There was never a formal establishment for battery rough riders, but that does not preclude men trained for the work, in addition to their normal duties, being paid extra, as Muerrisch says.

 

Ron

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Thanks again for further replies.

 

James Lipton was wounded in the arm in 1916 and was evacuated to England where he was operated on to remove 'foreign body'. He recovered and went back to France in 1917 and in 1918 he did several monthly spells  as Battery RoughRider before returning to UK in Aug 1918 for a 'tour'. So his arm must surely have recovered! Yet he died some 3 months after he was demobbed in 1919 and a note on someone's family tree on the net says this was  from war injuries received. I suppose the death cert will verify this.

His Service Record showed no subsequent wounding.He is on CWGC and his widow got a war gratuity.

 

Incidentally what would a pencilled 'P.O.S.B.' be on a Soldiers Effects record? Is it simply saying paid to Post Office Savings Bank?

Charlie

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