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RFA - Unit 1a Res Bde


appleyard

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I am having trouble locating the Unit War Diary for 1a Res Bde RFA.  Please can someone help?  I am particularly interested in where they were mid-May 1917.

Thank you,

Cal

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Hi and welcome to the forum.

 

I'm not an artillery expert, (hopefully one will be along shortly :), but to the best of my knowledge Reserve Brigades were UK service only and so would not have been required to keep a war diary.

 

May help if you tell us why you are looking, (if it's not too personal) as there may well be other ways to obtain the information you're after.

 

Cheers,

Peter

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Newcastle

http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/regiments-and-corps/the-royal-artillery-in-the-first-world-war/royal-artillery-depots-training-and-home-defence-units/

 

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1A Reserve Brigade RFA, consisting of Nos. 1, 2 and 3 Reserve Batteries, was at Fenham Barracks, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
 

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Thank you for the replies.  I didn’t realize 1a Res Bde RFA was a Home Unit, which would explain why there is no Unit War Diary.  Newcastle makes sense as that is where the person I am researching came from.

I am researching Clement Wishart for a friend.  He served as a Gunner in the Royal Field Artillery (service number 90309), enlisting 28/8/1914 in 1a Res Bde RFA.  He was discharged 14/5/1917 as wounded and no longer fit for war service.  A Silver War Badge, number 178143, was issued 22/5/1917.

His Medal Card states that he served in Egypt from 1/7/1915.  Did the Unit go to Egypt or would he have transferred to another unit?  If the latter, any idea how I can find out which unit since his service papers appear not to have survived.  Is there a way to find out if it was in Egypt that he was wounded?  

Perhaps someone could also help me with the following:

There are 5 transcribed pension ledgers and index cards for him on line but they don’t give any indication of the original source.

  • ·         York; North East England   (4/MW/10982)

  • ·         c/o Mrs Wrethinan Place of Bonhill, Dumbartonshire; Scotland   (1/MW/2147)

  • ·         North-West England   (3/MW/No.14549)

  • ·         Heaton, Newcastle upon Tyne; Northern, England   (2/MW/No.747)

  • ·         R S C. Camp Gormanstown, co. Meath Ireland; Ireland   (13/MW/1945)

I’m assuming they are TNA documents but what is the reference?  I presume the ‘reference’ given is one of those ‘former reference in department’.  Would the originals give more information about the disability?  It would be interesting to have some sort of chronology to see how he moved around once back home.  I know he joined the Royal Irish Constabulary for a very short time (15/4/1921 – 28/5/1921), which would explain the pension being administered from Gormanston.

Any help much appreciated,

Cal

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20 minutes ago, appleyard said:

His Medal Card states that he served in Egypt from 1/7/1915

 

That is the entry date for 67th Brigade RFA

 

33 minutes ago, appleyard said:

I didn’t realize 1a Res Bde RFA was a Home Unit

 

It was the unit he was discharged from and not the one he served with overseas. After he had enlisted he was first sent to No. 1 Depot RFA, Newcastle.

The pension references you have found refer to other documentation that may yet come to light. (WFA ledgers and index cards on Fold3).

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  • 2 weeks later...

As he resigned from the RIC for private reasons with less than 2 months service he would not have received an RIC pension nor any gratuity. Whatever the Gomanston reference was it would not be in respect of a police pension.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Cal,

 

Clement served with 26 Battery RFA in the 29th Division and wounded, possibly by shrapnel, on 19 May 1916. He is recorded in the 29th Divisional Artillery War Record and Honours Book 1915-1918.

 

Best,

 

Scott

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Many thanks for this latest information Scott.  

 

I am trying to get my head around this chap and ascertain where (and how many times) he was wounded. 

 

Clement Wishart, Gunner 90309, Royal Field Artillery

 

Earlier replies state that:

·         after he had enlisted, he was first sent to No. 1 Depot RFA, Newcastle.

·         he was in 67th Brigade [because his medal card shows that the theatre of war he first served in was (3) Egypt and date of entry therein was 1/7/1915]

·         the 29th Divisional Artillery War Record and Honours Book 1915-1918, says he served with 26 Battery RFA in the 29th Division and was wounded on 19 May 1916

·         he was discharged from 1a Res Bde RFA

 

Questions

1.  From No. 1 Depot RFA, Newcastle, did he go into the 67th Brigade? 

[As I understand it, that is in the 13th (Western) Division, later 10th Irish Division (rather than the 29th Division) and they were at Gallipoli then Mesopotamia]

 

2. Can anyone tell me what the '(3)' means on his medal card?

 

2.  If in the 67th Brigade, did he at some point transfer to the 26 Battery, 17th Brigade, 29th Division?

 

3.  We know he was wounded with 26 Battery on 19/5/1916 - but where was he when he was wounded? 

[As I understand it, 26 Battery arrived in France in March 1916, but did not engage the enemy until the Battles of the Somme after 1 July 1916.]

 

4.  Was he wounded again in May 1917 - or had he spent a year home-based in the 1a Res Bde RFA?

[He was discharged as wounded and no longer fit for war service, 14/5/1917; awarded a pension, payable from 15/5/1917, as a result of gun-shot wound to left foot, with fracture; and issued with a Silver War Badge, number 178143, on 22/5/1917 - virtually a year after he was wounded with 26 Battery]

 

Any help from people who know what they are talking about would be much appreciated as I feel out of my depth with this one. 

 

Many thanks,

 

Cal

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, appleyard said:

From No. 1 Depot RFA, Newcastle, did he go into the 67th Brigade?

 

Hard to tell, he may have gone to a Reserve Brigade first. 67th Brigade RFA was formed at Bulford. I must also say that the date of entry could indicate 58th Brigade RFA as they were embarking for Egypt at the same time. If you go through the 1914-15 rolls and pinpoint some records for men with that date you will find this happens. In fact, 67th Brigade RFA disembarked in Egypt over the course of five days, not just the one. The (3) is the code Egypt.

 

15 hours ago, appleyard said:

If in the 67th Brigade, did he at some point transfer to the 26 Battery, 17th Brigade, 29th Division?

 

Yes, the evidence points to him arriving in Egypt long after 29th Division had got there. You are lucky that he is mentioned in the divisional book and that Scott spotted it. As for where he was wounded, you need to consult the War Diary. If not in any particular action then you have to factor in an accidental or self inflicted wounding.

 

15 hours ago, appleyard said:

Was he wounded again in May 1917 - or had he spent a year home-based in the 1a Res Bde RFA?

 

Not wounded again just discharged. As he was wounded in the foot he would not be able to march. He is most likely to have been sent to hospital at home almost immediately, as he was no good in France. Depending on the severity, it could easily have taken a year before it was decided he would need to be discharged. He could have been posted to a variety of depots and reserve brigades and been before several medical boards before the final decision was made. 

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Hi Cal,

 

16 hours ago, appleyard said:

Can anyone tell me what the '(3)' means on his medal card?

 

It's just the theatre of war code for Egypt - see here.

 

Regards

Chris

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Cal,

 

At the time Clement was apparently wounded, I believe the battery was based in the Englebelmer Sector, near the village of Mailly-Maillet. The Divisional Artillery war diary doesn't mention anyone being wounded by gunshot that day, though that's not to say it didn't happen. Annoyingly such details are provided for the following month!

 

Best,

 

Scott

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  • 10 months later...

My grandfathers brother - James Ford served in 5c RES BDE from 1907 to 1919 (see record attached) It says he served overseas.

Sadly his record must have been destroyed in WW2.

Where can i find out more about his WW1 activities?

His medal card doesn't give much info (see attached)

Sorry for my ignorance ! Any help appreciated !

Screenshot 2021-06-27 at 20.35.57.png

Screenshot 2021-06-27 at 22.01.04.png

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Hi saints442,

There are two things I should point out immediately from the images shown. 5c Reserve Brigade RFA was the unit he was discharged from and not where he would have served overseas. His service number is not the one he would have been issued with in 1907 and falls in a batch of men transferred from the Army Service Corps in January 1918. This would probably be from 661 or 662 Coy ASC at No. 1 Reserve HT Depot, Park Royal to 10th Reserve Brigade RHA at Woolwich.

EDIT: He has a record under the 246247 number on Findmypast and also a pension ledger record on Ancestry. See below

Edited by David Porter
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His surviving pages show he was actually in the 1st and 5th Dragoon Guards, number 1225, and served in Ireland and India. He was transferred to the RFA on October 19, 1917 and posted to 135th Battery, 32nd Brigade RFA.  He suffered a Gas Shell Wound with this unit on May 13, 1918. A delay in Records getting his papers may be behind his new number not being issued until January 1918. 

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David Porter - thank ever so much ! I’m really indebted to you.

This gives me so much to work on. 
I appreciate the time you’ve taken to look at this for me.

it’s such a shame that the records office was bombed in WWII. My grandfather Alfred Ford was in the RMC during WWI and being a ‘F’ his records were lost too. 
however he left lots of interesting bits and pieces and I was able to locate the CCS’s that he worked in

anyhows

best regards and thanks again!

Glen

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War diaries for units serving in France & Flanders can currently be downloaded for free from the National Archive. You do have to sign in with an account, but if you haven't got one, even that can be set up as part of placing your first order. Just click sign in and follow the instructions.

The War Diary for 32nd Brigade RFA covering from August 1914 to January 1919 can be found on the National Archive website here:- https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7352125

It's very unlikely to mention him by name, but it will give you some idea of where they were and what they were up to.

His surviving discharge record shows that he signed up for a 7 years in the colours and 5 in the reserves in 1907. I take it he is the 21 year old Private James Ford, born Portsmouth, Hampshire who was recorded on the night of the 1911 Census of England & Wales in Barracks at Ambala, India with the 1st Kings Dragoon Guards. The service record contains a conduct sheet signed Ambala, 12th January 1914 by the Commanding Officer Kings Dragoon Guards.

His Dragoon Guards service number was 1225, and it's under that you will find his service medal Medal Index Card, along with RFA service number "246248". Note some of his service record paperwork also shows that RFA number.

1751401755_JamesFord1225DGand246248RFAsourcedAncestry.jpg.b23bb96fa240dc65c8a0aec4f685f6b3.jpg
(Image courtesy of Ancestry)

The MiC appears to show him first landing in France on the 8th October 1914 with the 1st Dragoon Guards. Our parent site, the Long, Long Trail, has this on the 1st (Kings) Dragoon Guards.

1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards
August 1914 : in Lucknow in India, part of the Lucknow Cavalry Brigade.
Moved with Brigade to France as part of 1st Indian Cavalry Division, landed Marseilles 7 November 1914.
26 November 1916 : 1st Indian Cavalry Division renamed as 4th Cavalry Division.
7 October 1917 : left Brigade and returned to India, where it then remained.

https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/regiments-and-corps/cavalry-regiments/the-dragoon-guards/

The date on the MiC is therefore probably the date they sailed from India. This seems to be an issue with Cavalry and Yeomanry units, so I suspect that was standard practice at that particular records office. He still arrived early enough to qualify for the clasp and roses on his 1914 Star. https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/soldiers/how-to-research-a-soldier/campaign-medal-records/the-british-campaign-medals-for-the-great-war/

May be a co-incidence, but the unit sailing for India roughly ties in with his transfer to the Royal Field Artillery "in the field", as shown on his service record.

And the War Diary for the 1st (Kings) Dragoon Guards can be found on the National Archive site here:-

August 1914 to December 1916: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7351676

January 1917 to October 1917: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7351593

Hope some of that helps,
Peter

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