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A Lancashire Fusilier by Proxy

AF.B 252 - Airedale terrier leaving his post without permission”

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A Lancashire Fusilier by Proxy

My grandad in his diary for 1 June 2016 (when the 2/5th Lancashire Fusiliers were on the front line in the Blaireville sector) describes how the Regimental pet, an Airedale terrier, found his way from Battalion HQ to Company HQ where my grandad's dug out was. He says:Hearing a dog bark outside my dug out, I went out and found him. He was all alone, having come up from Battalion HQ; he made himself quite happy on my bed in the Company HQ, and slept there all night. I sent him down next morning to Battalion HQ under escort, and charged him on AF.B 252  “Leaving his Post without permission”. 

I am wondering what AFB 252 is; at least, my grandad tells me what it is in one sense, a charge of leaving a post without permission, but what does AF.B 252 stand for. Is it a form that had to be filled out? Or an offence listed in army regulations?

I presume that the dog was not punished too harshly for his misdemeanour!

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charlie962

At least he wasn't running away from the front line.  Army Form B252 was indeed a Charge Sheet.

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FROGSMILE

Every soldier of my generation and before was familiar with one of these, but towards the end of my service they were nothing like as common, although in part I think that was due to distinctly varying attitudes towards them from different parts of the Army.

611DB6D3-23EB-4751-936B-B944AE4E3644.jpeg

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A Lancashire Fusilier by Proxy

Thank you, I am, as ever, very impressed to get the answer within an hour, and a sample copy of the actual form 20 minutes later.

I thought for a moment the sample form might have been from 2005 rather than 1905, with Frogsmile's reference to the form being in use during his own service, till I saw the reference to the King, so 1905 it is.

I hope that Private Hawkins enjoyed his time out, and that it was worth it. Would he have been only 5 minutes late or a bit more? I'm guessing a bit more in view of the reference to the tattoo. [I have just googled this and it looks as though the tattoo would have started at 9.30pm and finished at 10.00pm, so a bit more than 5 minutes]

I suppose that they would have taken the whisky off him. Pity, as it looks as though he would properly have enjoyed it, never having been done for drunkenness in nearly three years.

Anyway, I see I am straying off topic, as this form predated WW1 by nearly 10 years, but interesting, thank you.

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)

You made an interesting point about just how contemporary such forms might still be.  It was only from around the year 2000 and the expanded use of the internet within the MOD, which led to an even greater roll-out of associated word processing packages, that Army forms began to change to any great degree.  In part this was because concurrently there was also a drive for as much administration as possible to be made tri-service.  Up till that point changing a form had to be justified with a formal proposal, with a good reason behind it, and if approved it was then promulgated centrally.  Once everyone had a word processor it was an act of moments to change things and some units did so almost on a whim and with more than a whiff of 'jolly good ideas' by those trying to make their name.  In a sense it’s led to a gradual unraveling of what had once been a very conservative and relatively hidebound, but nonetheless effective system of administration.  Of course many felt that blowing the cobwebs away was long overdue, and in the interest of a greater flexibility. I don’t know to what degree the AF B252 might have changed, but I strongly suspect that there is a tri-service equivalent nowadays.

Edited by FROGSMILE

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Sepoy
Posted (edited)

I have often wondered about the joker who picked the STD telephone code for the Aldershot area - 01 252 :D
Sepoy

Edited by Sepoy

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Sepoy said:

I have often wondered about the joker who picked the STD telephone code for the Aldershot area - 01 252 :D
Sepoy

 

I didn't know that.  It doesn't seem like a coincidence, that's for sure.

Edited by FROGSMILE

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David_Underdown

They were broadly assigned by putting the exchanges in alphabetical order and then just going up in numerical order (though I seem to remember that 0 comes after 9 rather than before 1 as you might expect, which had something to do with 0 being signalled by 10 pulses, rather than the absence of pulse)

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The Scorer
7 hours ago, David_Underdown said:

They were broadly assigned by putting the exchanges in alphabetical order and then just going up in numerical order (though I seem to remember that 0 comes after 9 rather than before 1 as you might expect, which had something to do with 0 being signalled by 10 pulses, rather than the absence of pulse)

 

I always thought that they'd been allocated in strict alphabetical order, but having asked Mr W Pedia for his help, I now see tat this is / wasn't the case - although they may have left gaps which have been filled, of course.

 

However, Aldershot used to have two codes - (0)1251 and (0)1252 - and the numbers allocated to the former were reallocated to the latter. 

01251 is now unused, but 0251 was Aldershot (AL1), before the numbers were transferred to 0252, which became 01252, Aldershot (AL2). 

This change happened prior to PhONEday (16 April 1995).

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
18 minutes ago, The Scorer said:

I always thought that they'd been allocated in strict alphabetical order,

Many years ago when we first got a phone, I used to read the STD codebook quite a bit.

I got the impression that perhaps there were more than one series of numbers in use, each with a list of  vaguely alphabetically ordered towns, that were later merged.

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