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Gunner RC Mullins 123 Seige Battery RGA


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My Grandfather joined the Dorset Yeomanry i 1912. He was transferred to the Dorset RGA ( no date in the records but went to France in 1917) which I believe was 123 Seige Battery RGA, first deployed to France 18 July 1916.

 

He was carrying pit props into the mine under Hill 60 during the night and manning the gun during the day so was at Hill 60 before 7 June 1917.

He was also involved in the 'every man for himself retreat' in 1918. He survived the war and died aged 77.

His Index card shows Richard C Mullins - Royal Garrison Artillery Dorset Yeomanry Queens Own 334552, Dorset Yeomanry 560

Could anyone tell me where to look to expand this limited history of his service please.

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123rd Siege Battery was formed from the 22nd March 1916, at Portland, with 3 Officers and 78 Other Ranks being posted to it from the Dorset RGA TF as a nucleus, and the remainder from "regular" recruits. I have it leaving Southampton on the 18th July 1916 and disembarking the next day at Le Havre for the start of its service overseas. Your grandfathers RGA number indicates a likely transfer date of early March 1916 so he may well have been transferred in time to be an original member. The unit was 4 x 6inch Howitzer (26 cwt.) Battery on arriving in France, being made up to 6 Howitzers on the 26th August 1917 when a section joined from 414th Siege Battery.

 

Unfortunately 123 SB war diary doesn't appear to have survived which means you need to consult the Heavy Artillery Groups (later Brigade) diaries that it was attached to. These can be downloaded from the Nat. Archives site - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk . 

The ones you require are;

to 47 HAG 23-7-1916

to 8 HAG 12-9-1916

to 46 HAG 17-9-1917

to 8 HAG 1-10-1916

to 46 HAG 17-10-1916

to 8 HAG 20-10-1916

to 35 HAG 1-12-1916

to 47 HAG 11-1-1917

to 81 HAG 18-2-1917

to 10 HAG 24-3-1917

to 65 HAG 12-4-1917

to 72 HAG 16-5-1917

to 57 HAG 2-7-1917

to 10 HAG 9-7-1917

to 7 HAG 5-10-1917

to 71 HAG 29-10-1917

to 88 HAG 12-11-1917

 

As you can see the battery went in and out of duplicate HAGS ( 8 and 46) which cuts down on some of the number of diaries needed, but there are still quite a few. 

For searching just use the number followed by Brigade, then Royal Garrison Artillery. The first is this http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/results/r?_q=47+Brigade+royal+garrison+artillery . Just change the number for the others, and if there are multiple diaries just pick the correct dated one. Or just pick the ones needed if you wish to just view a particular period during the war.

 

Kevin

 

 

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Thank you Kevin for the information and advice.

 

Oral history from my cousin in Australia says he went to France in 1916 so that indicates he was an original member.

 

I presume you inferred his joining date from RGA numbers either side of his which had recorded dates. We arrived at his enlistment date in the same way.

It would be interesting to know who the other soldiers were, either side of his number. Is that information easily available?

He also said he lost his gun/unit six times. Would he have stayed in 123 Siege Battery?

 

Paul

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18 hours ago, Paul Dewey said:

I presume you inferred his joining date from RGA numbers either side of his which had recorded dates. We arrived at his enlistment date in the same way.

It would be interesting to know who the other soldiers were, either side of his number. Is that information easily available?

He also said he lost his gun/unit six times. Would he have stayed in 123 Siege Battery?

 

The easiest way to see who are the nearest men is to look at their MICs by just using 33455? on the NA site - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/results/r?_fn=&_ln=&_no=33455%3F&_crp=garrison&_ttl=&discoveryCustomSearch=true&_cr1=WO+372&_dt=M&_col=200&_hb=tna .

 

Only one gunners records have survived and that is 334550 James Thorburn, and a medical record for 334558 Sidney Plomer.

 

Without your relatives records it is impossible to say whether he stayed with 123 SB for the duration. The majority of gunners served with more than one battery. If he had been hospitalised for any length of time, either in France or back in England, he would almost certainly have been posted to different battery as a reinforcement.

 

Kevin

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Thank you again Kevin.

 

I have started extracting 123 SB information from the War Diaries of the respective HAGs. I will see if they tie up with the limited oral history locations we have such as Vimy, Hill 60, Messines and 4th Eypres.

 

I presume I can view 334550 James Thorburn's records via the National Archives website.

 

Paul

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  • 1 year later...

 

On 02/12/2018 at 11:59, kevinrowlinson said:

 

The easiest way to see who are the nearest men is to look at their MICs by just using 33455? on the NA site - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/results/r?_fn=&_ln=&_no=33455%3F&_crp=garrison&_ttl=&discoveryCustomSearch=true&_cr1=WO+372&_dt=M&_col=200&_hb=tna .

 

Only one gunners records have survived and that is 334550 James Thorburn, and a medical record for 334558 Sidney Plomer.

 

Without your relatives records it is impossible to say whether he stayed with 123 SB for the duration. The majority of gunners served with more than one battery. If he had been hospitalised for any length of time, either in France or back in England, he would almost certainly have been posted to different battery as a reinforcement.

 

Kevin

 

Hi Kevin,

 

Sorry to butt in on Pauls query, Paul I hope you found the information you needed.

 

334558 Sidney Plomer who you mention was my grandfather, you mention in your comment a medical record. I have not been able to find a reference to this and I was wodering if you possibly have a link to the document or anything else that relates to my grandfather.

 

Steve

 

 

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Steve,

not knowing what you know of your grandfather this may be superfluous but may help...from Ancestry

image.png.e10092070502d93a23004ae7895290a7.png

 

George

 

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6 hours ago, George Rayner said:

Steve,

not knowing what you know of your grandfather this may be superfluous but may help...from Ancestry

image.png.e10092070502d93a23004ae7895290a7.png

 

George

 

 

Hi George,

 

Thanks very much, I have not seen this before. It would be really interesting to know what the red handwriting says, I guess it follows a standard abreviated method.

 

I will try to decipher it.

 

Cheers

Steve

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Good luck! I tried but I don't know enough for it to be made sensible

 

George

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6 hours ago, kevinrowlinson said:

 

Hi Kevin,

 

Thanks very much for getting back to me.

 

I will have a look and see what I can find out.

 

Many Thanks

Steve

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6 minutes ago, George Rayner said:

Good luck! I tried but I don't know enough for it to be made sensible

 

George

 

Thanks George,

 

My wife is good with handwriting, I will ask if she can decipher it.

 

Then all I need to do is work out what it means. Looks something to do with medical retirement and dates.

 

Cheers

Steve

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I spent 35 years teaching which mostly helps!

 

George

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  • Admin
Michelle Young

BW&V Meds Retd which I read as British War and Victory Medals Returned then something I can't make out then 7.7.23 

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7 minutes ago, Michelle Young said:

BW&V Meds Retd which I read as British War and Victory Medals Returned then something I can't make out then 7.7.23 

 

Hi Michelle,

 

Thanks very much for your message.

 

Please excuse my lack of knowledge, does this mean he did not keep his medals?

 

Cheers

Steve

 

 

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Michelle Young

That I don't know I'm afraid, does his medal index card give any clues? Edit, his MIC also say Retd (1743. K.R. 1912) 8100/Adt

Michelle 

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Michelle Young

I've just found this on the Long Long Trail website 

IMG_1915.PNG

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3 minutes ago, Michelle Young said:

I've just found this on the Long Long Trail website 

IMG_1915.PNG

 

Hi Michelle,

 

That seems like a good possiblity, many thanks.

 

I have just had a look at my grandfathers medal index card and it gives similar information in the remarks, though less of it.

 

It reads: Retd (KR 1912) 8100/Adt

 

Cheers

Steve

 

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  • 7 months later...

Hi Steve,

 

Just read your post of 27 April.

 

As you can see on the Medal and Award Rolls attachment my grandfather, RC Mullins is on the same page as your grandfather.

 

Also on that page are William Wale and Jesse Davis.

 

WW I Service Medal and Award Rolls, 1914-1920.pdf

 

1645473609_RCMullinswithfriendsofWW1.jpg.a8aaf482205c6853c39cdfc54e68cb8a.jpg

 

Left to right sitting William Wale, RC Mullins, Jesse Davis. The man standing is unknown. Could it be Sidney Plomer?

Edited by Paul Dewey
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3 hours ago, Paul Dewey said:

Hi Steve,

 

Just read your post of 27 April.

 

As you can see on the Medal and Award Rolls attachment my grandfather, RC Mullins is on the same page as your grandfather.

 

Also on that page are William Wale and Jesse Davis.

 

WW I Service Medal and Award Rolls, 1914-1920.pdf 1.54 MB · 4 downloads

 

1645473609_RCMullinswithfriendsofWW1.jpg.a8aaf482205c6853c39cdfc54e68cb8a.jpg

 

Left to right sitting William Wale, RC Mullins, Jesse Davis. The man standing is unknown. Could it be Sidney Plomer?

 

Hi Paul,

 

Thanks very much for your reply, image and pdf.

 

Was the photo taken at a reunion for the RGA?  Its great they all met up again.

 

It would be amazing to have a copy of the photo that the chap is holding behind, as I would imagine they are all on it including my grandfather.

 

The chap behind is not my grandfather Sidney Plomer unfortunately. I have attached a picture of my grandfather, likely to have been taken around the same date to the one above. He was a wondeful grandfather and a real gentleman.

 

Did you find out all the information that you wanted in the end.

 

I would be lovely to find my grandfathers medals, but there is no sign of them, he passed away in 1975.

 

Regards

Steve

 

2020_1228_12483500.jpg.3321f59d07be0dabb7aa064ec0b4ea86.jpg

 

 

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Thanks for the quick reply Steve. It must have been a reunion, date or venue unknown. The three seated remained lifelong friends.

 

There must be a copy of the group photo somewhere.

 

The first photo is possibly 'D' company QODY, taken before transfer to the GRA.

 

Their attestation papers and other QODY records are in the archives at Dorchester. I need to go and look again (post COVID)as RCM's history is incomplete, but there may be more history for those around him at the time. I can look for Sidney's at the same time if you can't get there.

 

Which company was Sidney in? Was he a Dorset farmer?

 

 

image.png.1dd4b457880b8d03f7914579f18adb6f.png

 

image.png.03611d262b0471a68699db46e7e39d5e.png

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Thanks for the quick reply Steve. It must have been a reunion, date or venue unknown. The three seated remained lifelong friends.

 

There must be a copy of the group photo somewhere.

 

The first photo is possibly 'D' company QODY, taken before transfer to the GRA.

 

Their attestation papers and other QODY records are in the archives at Dorchester. I need to go and look again (post COVID)as RCM's history is incomplete, but there may be more history for those around him at the time. I can look for Sidney's at the same time if you can't get there.

 

Which company was Sidney in? Was he a Dorset farmer?

 

Look at returned ww1 medals on this site for info on claiming returned medals

image.png.1dd4b457880b8d03f7914579f18adb6f.png

 

image.png.03611d262b0471a68699db46e7e39d5e.png

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Hi Paul,

 

Thanks very much for the message and pictures.

 

I see from my grandfathers record he was a L/bdr in the Dorset Yeomanry, Iooking the the features I think the L/bdr in the centre may possibly be my grandfather, so they could have been in the same company. I do not have any early pictures of him to compare to, but I think it may be him.

 

I have been down to Dorchester, but I was not aware there were archives there. If you do get a chance to go, I would really appreciate it if you could have a look if there is anything about my grandfather while you are there.

 

He was from Wimborne and one of nine children. I am not sure what his early occupation was, though he was an optician, with his own shop in Shrewsbury.

 

Best wishes for the new year.

 

Regards

Steve

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