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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

1st Highland Cycle Brigade


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My paternal grandfather, John Brash Smith, was a (widowed) private in the 1st Highland Cycle Brigade, and was based at Barry Camp when he remarried in Oct 1917 in Shettleston, Glasgow, Scotland. He was born in Dennistoun in Jul 1876. From 1911, and before, he lived in Rutherglen, Scotland. His first wife, Janet, nee Winning, died there in 1914. He was a wire/rope spinner in civilian life.


I  have been unable to locate his service record/s, his service number etc., and fear they may have been lost.


It would be of interest were anyone able to provide information on the 1st Highland Cycle Brigade. I read on line that the Brigade moved to Ireland before the end of WWI but am not sure that the information relates to my grandfather, since I am not aware of him leaving Scotland prior to his death in Dec 1967.


Many thanks for any assistance.


James Scott


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Welcome to the Forum !

There is a link to the Long Long Trail at top left of this page. There you will see that the 1 Highland Cyclist Battalion had 3 elements, all were raised in Scotland, and 2 of them went to Ireland in 1918, the third was disbanded in Scotland in Mar 1916 and distributed to either the other 2 elements or the Machine Gun Corps :

1/1 raised in Scotland 1914 to May 1918 when posted to Ireland. 2/1 The same. 3/1 Raised in Scotland 1914 disbanded  Mar 1916.

If your man went off to Ireland he would have no medal card to check, if he was 3/1 and went off to the MGC he might have a medal card if he was posted to a war zone.

Edited by sotonmate
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Thank you for your comments sotonmate.


Reviewing the information on hand, it appears most probable that my grandfather may have been affiliated with the 1/2nd line of the Highland Cycle Brigade, which formed in Nov 1914. When he remarried  on 12 Oct 1917 in Shettleston he was serving as a private at Barrow Camp. He had been widowed at the end of Jul 1914, age 38, father of four children, the youngest 6 months, the eldest 7 years 4 months; it possible he would have been unwilling to go overseas having those family responsibilities (therefore probably not affiliated with1/1st line); the 1/3rd line had been disbanded in 1916. He lived and worked in Glasgow and may have been affiliated with Bannockburn company - a guess. The 1/2nd transferred to Athlone in May 1918, and to Curragh Camp in Aug 1918, disbanding on 03 Jul 1919. You note that those transferred to Ireland would probably not have medical cards. I have no idea whether he actually went to Ireland, but it appears that it may not now be possible to determine hard facts related to his situation.

Edited by Guest
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I see that there are online voting records for Glasgow for 1918, also absent voters lists for the same year on FMP. If he was away from home this second would be useful.

I wonder if you can get info from the vote records ?


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