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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Second Private ?


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I was recently looking round a local churchyard, locating a grave for Jim Strawbridge, When I came across the WW1 CWGC headstone of Second Private Sidney Jones 185886 RAF.


I have never heard of this rank, could anyone explain it to me please?

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When the RAF was formed on 1 April 1918 the lowest ranks, other than Air Mechanics and Clerks, were designated as Private 1st Class and Private 2nd Class.


Second Private is therefore Private 2nd Class.


On 1 January 1919 these ranks were changed to Aircraftman 1st Class (AC1) and Aircraftman 2nd Class (AC2).



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Thanks for that explanation. It was puzzling me as I have never come across it before in the British rank system.



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