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F Osborne TMB (RAMC? )


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RAMC experts, any help finding this chap please.


A recently rediscovered Roll of Honour found beneath St Mary's Church, Portsea, has produced some serious identification challenges. The men all appear to have survived the war, and were members of a church men's sports and social style club attached to what was one of the parish mission churches, St Boniface, (demolished int the early 1960's).


The memorial has Surnames, intials, and service only.   Of the 32 names I have so far managed to identify 13 with reasonable confidence, pending checks in the 1918 and 1919 registers once the local archives reopen, but seeing a recent post here identify TMB  as Travelling Medical Board, I thought that maybe some RAMC specialist might just have a suggestion.

In terms of geography he should be a man giving Portsmouth, Portsea, Southsea, as the most likely home area, although just possibly North End, or Kingston. The memorial is yet to be cleaned up, as it is currently trapped below ground in a former boiler room, and an intervention by builders is needed to extract it.


Edited by keithmroberts
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15 minutes ago, keithmroberts said:

seeing a recent post here identify TMB  as Travelling Medical Board, I thought that maybe some RAMC specialist might just have a suggestion.

Perhaps Trench Mortar Battery instead??

To me that probably seems more likely.

:-) M

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Or if it is RAMC, here's an idea from The National Roll of the Great War, 1914-1918 (from Ancestry):



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Trench Mortar Battery is an odd thing to note for a soldier's service. Not as odd though as Traveling Medical Board. 


He may well have served on mortars for a long period which earned him that service on the roll.


There were light, medium and heavy TMBs. The first operated by infantry from that brigade, medium & heavy by RA at division level.


F Osborne could then be either RA or any infantry unit, which widens the search a bit!


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Thanks Acknown, I had looked at him, but although he is a possible, as a local lad who ended up in the Hampshire Regiment, I might have expected him to  have quoted his Hampshire REgiment service. Several of the others named  have given Hampshires as their regiment (sadly without battalion numbers). Omega street is within range, although closer to two other daughter churches of the parish, (it was large). He is on the list I'll check on the electoral register once I can access it.


One of my problems is a total lack of knowledge about the "Travelling Medical Boards."  I doubt they would ahve operated on Gallipoli, although maybe they could have operated in Egypt I suppose.



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Oh boy, what a dickhead. I completely overlooked Trench Mortar Battery, which could refer, as TEW points out, to any infantry unti. Thank you. I reckon I'll be looking through about four wards of the 1918 register for the forenames of potential candidates. it is truly frustrating. One of the other daughter churches (St Wilfrid's), created an amazing street list of men who served, which despite many errors, was much easier to follow up, and was supported by a number of other surviving documents that really helped.  Pretty much everything from this particular mission church was disposed of. I'll just go away and regret the passing of what was once a useful brain. This might raise Pte F J in the stakes.


Thank both.

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I just followed on from Matlock1418's comment regarding TMB.


Travelling Medical Boards I'm fairly sure would consist of RAMC with rank.


Intrigued as to how other mens' service is given on the roll.


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22 minutes ago, TEW said:

Intrigued as to how other mens' service is given on the roll.


It certainly does often help to have more context.


Now for a reckless punt ...

If rank is given for F. Osbourne - I speculatively hypothesise:

Any rank seems possible, but I think probably below Major, for a Trench Mortar Battery(ies)

Officer, but I think probably Captain or higher [because I think necessarily a doctor], for a Travelling Medical Board.


Now we [especially I] wait ...

Oh, joy!

;-) M

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The problem, apart from my blinkered focus on Travelling Medical Boards, in disregard of the possibility of Trench Mortar battery,  is that we really have nothing further from the source. The memorial service in most cases lists regiment or sometimes service.  The wider parish covered a considerable area, most of Portsea island, but new churches were being built, so boundaries can't be relied on given a compact urban area.  To cover the point about how other men were named, i am posting a table below that includes a precise transcription of the memorial, and notes of current outcomes. The memorial is currently underground in a former boiler room, trapped by later building work. I was allowed to descend the iron runged ladder that now sits beneath a small metal hatch cover, on my 72nd birthday.  There is a real hope that we can extricate it within a few weeks because some building work is imminent, after which we hope to clean it up with advice from the War Memorials Trust.

The three clergymen who served as army chaplains were researched in some depth about three years ago, along with the other 27 curates of the parish who served.  I photographed all the surviving Great War editions of the parish magazine some years ago for an HLF funded project, and can find only one of these men named, and that with insufficient detail, other than mentions of the clerics.  I have checked the entire catalogue of surviving parish material in our local archives, and there seems to be no further help.


When Portsmouth archives reopen I shall tackle the 1918 registers, starting close to the church, and working outwards for candidates with nm  markings, and also the local card index on parish marriages during the post war years. The church stood on  Clive Road at its junction with Guildford Road Fratton.


Aldridge E REV   Fully researched
Bell P   Hants Reg Mr P Bell elected to Mission Council (parish mag May 1923). Percy Bell, 6th Hants, b1897, addresses Guildford Rd 1901, 3 Brookfield 1911, 60 Adames RD 1939.
Byrne C   Hants Reg 2 possibles from Clive Road, born 1899 and 1900. Charles James with mother Alice at 29 Clive Rd in 1901, OR Charles George b 1900, baptised Portsmouth = possibly confusion over 2nd name. One military record to date just Charles.
Collins R   RAF  Robert Joseph Collins, 43 Thorncroft Rd (1911 census) Born 1899 Manchester Road, Joined RAF June 1918 sevice number 198312 (see FMP)
Collins S   RE  
Cousens J   Tank Corps  
Dewey C   Hants  
Elliot E REV   fully researched
Etherington J   RE probably John, (1911 census 18 Newcome Road, later? Sapper 169915. 
Farr W   RN  
Gill J   RASC  
Hickman F   RN Frederick William HICKMAN, M 1027 RN, b07/02/1889 Portsmouth, 1901 at 65 Guildford Road with parents.
Hunt L   ??  
Jefferies F   RE Positioned at the head of the memorial.
Jefferies Fr   RFC  
Jones A Ll. REV   Fully researched
Lane  W   Lab Corps  
Loft S   RN probably Sidney Clarence LOFT  M20825  RN  born 17/9/1897 Portsmouth, family at 12 Clive Road.
McCullagh T   RFA Terence P, Gunner 167969 RGA (not RFA)  2 x photos on Ancestry, now good copies received from family.
Norris B   RAMC  
Osborne F   TMB Could be "Travelling Medical Board" which would mean RAMC.
Petty C   Hants Vol.  
Pritchatt A   RHA Alfred Joseph Pritchatt,b 1894, 1911 at 170 Clive Road. Moved to Woking ? 1915  Trooper 5139 Guards machine Gun Regt.
Smith  J   RGA  
Stone R   RE  
Symonds W   RF  
Taylor L   Hants  
Thomas H   Glouc  
Tutte A E   RGA Lt Alfred Ernest Tutte, RGA. Practiced in Portsmouth as an architect. Service record at TNA
Tyler N   RE  
Williams TJ   RAMC Also Choirmaster and sometime secretary of the White Company 2 possibles so far.
Yeates A   RAF Arthur Robert Yeates, Air mechanic 3. RFC then  RAF. Family address 21 Herbert St Mile End  Portsmouth. 



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You have certainly set yourself a challenge - Physical as well as the usual cerebral!

:-) M

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