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Royal Army Service Corps (visiting serving soldiers in France)


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1984949213_PopPicture003.jpg.bd51e513c783b4111a5cf34aa3e688cb.jpgI was hoping that there might be some passport experts on the forum who can assist. I have my Grandmother's passport issued in 1919 and it has a number of stamps in it from when she must have visited my Grandfather who was serving in the ASC. Would anybody know how easy it would be to get to France  after the conflict ended, I had heard that the Red Cross organised trips for relatives but have not found any evidence of this. The passport is also clearly stamped as not being valid for travel to the zone of the Armies. Any help much appreciated as ever. Kind Regards Nigel 

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The Aberdeen Journal dated 29 April 1919 noted ‘A general order has been issued stating that, “members of the British Army” now stationed in Belgium and France may now have their wives with them.

Cosequently the passsport Office in St James Park and the Military permit authorities are being pleasantly beset with applications from wives anxious to make the journey to the battlefields where there husbands fought so valiantly.

The Order does not apply to the troops in Germany.  The officers and men who can take advantage of it are those of the cadres of Battalions who are engaged on line of communications or the work of clearing up.”

 

A few months later further instructions were issued in respect of the Army of Occupation in Germany for arrangements along the lines of ‘normal garrison arrangements’.  Another report noted many wives will take their holidays in France.  I guess if you had the means it was relatively easy, Cross channel services were operating normally (as they did during the war, though with different priorities).  Accommodation may have been more of an issue.

 

Ken

 

 

 

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Thankyou so much for your reply. I have his service number but his records are amongst those that no longer survive, would it be possible to find out where he was stationed do you think? He was EFC then absorbed into the ASC. Many thanks. Nigel 

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1 hour ago, Nigel M said:

Thankyou so much for your reply. I have his service number but his records are amongst those that no longer survive, would it be possible to find out where he was stationed do you think? He was EFC then absorbed into the ASC. Many thanks. Nigel 

 

Difficult with ASC but we could have a go

 

Ken

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That would be great Ken , where would you suggest searching?  His name was George William Marshall. There is some additional information on a previous enquiry I made entitled Expeditionary Forces Canteens including his EFC staff particulars form and a couple of photographs. Any help or suggestions greatly appreciated. Kind Regrds Nigel 

Service number below. 

A/311766. Pte EFC ASC. 

Edited 18 December , 2018 by Nigel M

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George Rayner

Ancestry has this to add...

Name: George Marshall
Military Year: 1914-1920
Rank: Acting Sergeant
Company: WO 329
Regiment or Corps: Royal Army Service Corps
Regiment Number: A/311766
Medal Awarded:

British War Medal and Victory Medal

 

https://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv=1&dbid=5119&h=4411308&tid=&pid=&usePUB=true&_phsrc=cIF1569&_phstart=successSource

 

George

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Not familiar with the Expeditionary Force Canteens but surviving records tell us their headquarters was at Boulogne-sur-Mer, and earlier it appears at Rouen, and men frequently rotated through the EFC Headquarters.  They were Army Troops and postings  include such remarks as '5th Army Area C' etc.  I also found men at Calais and I guess they were at all the IBDs as well as other postings to Battalion and other  Headquarters units. 

 

The piece I posted shows the facility was available to L of C men. I also note her passport was stamped 'Boulogne direct' my guess is he would have met her off the boat there and with say, a week's leave, who knows? (Though we can imagine, French Leave :wub: ).

Seriously, there would have been hotels and other accommodation in the town largely untouched by the war, other than the fact it was the entry port for hundreds of thousands of British soldiers.  The Base Hospitals and their ancillary units in the town would have been used to finding accommodation for relatives afforded the opportunity to visit seriously wounded men.

 

Still trying to understand the records as it appears some were recruited to the EFC in Boulogne though not served elsewhere other than the ASC.

 

His service number dates from around March 1917, we don't have a demobilisation date but most, where the records survive, had been transferred to Army Reserve 'Z' by the end of 1919/beginning 1920, which again accords with her second trip.

 

As I said, difficult but on the balance of probability they were together in Boulogne.  Another snippet from the records is they tended to be older but also had driving experience, again one wonders if they could have found a car.

 

A lot of this is speculative but I can't see the army allowing unaccompanied/unescorted wives to travel round the battlefields at that time unless they were of a certain class.

 

Ken

 

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That is fantastic thank you Ken. I know there is a record of his employer ,Maypoles Dairies who were a national food retailer and the Tescos of their day , in 1916 applying for his service to be deferred as he was a manger of one of their stores in St Albans, Herts at a military tribunal held at the St Albans Town Hall. I assume that his knowledge of foods and food  storage could have led him being posted tothe EFC but it's interesting that the form says Staff Particulars which doesn't sound very military. Thank you so much for your help, I was only 4 when he died so never had the chance to speak with him . The St Albans Historical society have asked if  his letters , postcards, and other family documents from that time could be posted on their website as the published a book a few years ago on StAlbans during WW1. Your information is very welcomed thank you. 

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2 hours ago, George Rayner said:

Ancestry has this to add...

Name: George Marshall
Military Year: 1914-1920
Rank: Acting Sergeant
Company: WO 329
Regiment or Corps: Royal Army Service Corps
Regiment Number: A/311766
Medal Awarded:

British War Medal and Victory Medal

 

https://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv=1&dbid=5119&h=4411308&tid=&pid=&usePUB=true&_phsrc=cIF1569&_phstart=successSource

 

George

Many thanks George ,  I have just joined Ancestry but had missed this. Much appreciated. Are there any RASC experts on this forum do you know? Nigel 

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George Rayner

Oh Yes! and they'll be along especially if you can change your title to include RASC!

 

George

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Many thanks, will do. 

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Hi all, I am fortunate to have my grandmother's passport which was issued to her in 1919 to visit my Grandfather George Marshall A/Sgt A/311766 in 1919. I would be very grateful on any information on how wives were allowed to visit their husbands or any other details which would shed light on his service. It was suggested to me that the Red Cross organised trips but I have not found any evidence of this. 20200427_181233.jpg.6e44061f3e4759661a4312887cf86b2a.jpgHe was originally EFC and I then assume transferred to the Royal Army Sercice Corps. He was a shop manager for Maypoles Dairies prior to the war as they made an application for his enlistment to be deferred to a military tribunal which was not successful. I have attached copy of passport with the stamps issued including not valid for Zone of the Armies so I assume they stayed in civilian areas. Many thanks. Nigel 

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16 hours ago, Nigel M said:

He was EFC then absorbed into the ASC.

 

For the sake of accuracy it was the other way round, mobilised to the ASC then posted to EFC. The 'A' prefix confirms this, as noted above it seems they were recruited to/posted to the EFC in France.

 

 

Ken

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  • kenf48 changed the title to Travelling to France 1919 EFC/ASC

Thankyou Ken, much appreciated, your knowledge is great. Are you a military historian by any chance? 

Nigel 

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Michelle Young

I've merged the two separate topics about the same subject to avoid repetition of answers.

Michelle 

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