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Remembered Today:

Henry William Brooks London Irish Rifles


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adrian 1008

Following on from church yesterday, I got chatting to one of the parishioners and somehow we got onto the subject of her Grandfather, she has always wanted to know about his WW1 service, she can recall he went to France early in the war having previously served in a Territorial Unit. He came back from France in 1917 as a CSM/RSM and joined a Unit running an OTC at a Grammer School ??

 

My research so far has found the following , but it doesnt fit with her recollection, perhaps hazy with the mists of time, she feels sure he joined the Westminster Rifles, and went to France at the very start 

 

Colleagues help would be appreciated

 

Henry William Brooks B 26/12/1884 Lived in Peckham

?? Service No 595966

Married Florence May Millar 07/1906 they had  5 children

 

Brooks, Henry William (595966).jpg

Medal Index card Henry William Brooks.png

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Mark1959

The above soldier was granted the freedom of city of london in 1918. In that doc he is described as London Irish Rifles which were the 18th Londons. The Westminsters were the 16th I believe

Henry William married Florence Annie Mary Miller at the Holy Trinity Church 5/8/06. Ancestry have the entry on the local register. People with those names appear on the electoral register in 1921 at 8 Carlton Grove - and well into the 1930s. So this appears to confirm the soldier's records are the right man,

The army numbering blog would suggest enlistment some time in 1909

https://armyservicenumbers.blogspot.com/2008/11/18th-county-of-london-battalion-london.html

Note the statement

"When the Territorial Force renumbered in 1917, the 18th Londons did so within the range 590001 to 610000."so 595966 fits in. 

The medal roll shows overseas 9/3/15 to 5/2/16

 

Edited by Mark1959
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adrian 1008

Thank you Mark, Is there any reason for the freedom award thats a very helpful piece of information

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Mark1959

Still editing previous post - see dates overseas

No reason given for freedom of city. Record on ancestry. 

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Mark1959

The unit war diary is at

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7354562

No charge if you create a free account. 

Unlikely to mention him by name but will give you an idea where they were. You have the dates overseas from medal roll,

They were at Loos Sept 1915.

Edited by Mark1959
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adrian 1008

Thank you i ve downloaded it.

 

I wonder why he came back after less than 1 year, his grand daughter did not mention any injury, and he lived to a ripe old age  

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corisande

 

The Medal Roll shows he served in France from 9 Mar 1915 to 5 Feb 1916.

 

If you look at the page, all 9 men on it are shown as leaving the war zone at that time

 

And the Star is with 18th London

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Matlock1418
24 minutes ago, adrian 1008 said:

I wonder why he came back after less than 1 year, his grand daughter did not mention any injury, and he lived to a ripe old age  

Brooks, Henry William (595966).jpg

This pension card looks like it is at point of transfer to Army Z Reserve.

For a CSM [A.WO1] a pension of 8/0 pw in 1920 suggest to me a very minor level of disability.

Hopefully @ss002d6252will be able to enlighten us as to the approx. percentage disability so defined.

How long it actually lasted is not clear here [typically pensions were initially conditional before being made final] - unfortunately his full pension file is now long lost/probably destroyed.

:-) M

 

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ss002d6252

8s per week is less than than minimum for a CSM - a 8s p/w pension would be a 20% disability for a private.

 

A CSM would be either a  Class 2 or a Class 1 pension (probably Class 2) which would be 10s per week or 10s 8d, respectively.

 

Craig

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Matlock1418
16 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:

8s per week is less than than minimum for a CSM - a 8s p/w pension would be a 20% disability for a private.

 

A CSM would be either a  Class 2 or a Class 1 pension (probably Class 2) which would be 10s per week or 10s 8d, respectively.

Thanks for replying - it had me puzzled.

Any speculation as to why 8/- pw?

:-) M

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travers61

 

He had a few years in the TF before WW1, as 1914/15 Star Roll shows he disembarked in France as a CSM and finished the war as Acting RSM/WO1 & his regimental number of  632 in 18th London's was issued between 20.1.1909 & 11.4.1910.

 

221 joined on 7th April 1908
402 joined on 20th January 1909
1043 joined on 11th April 1910
1154 joined on 3rd June 1912

 

https://armyservicenumbers.blogspot.com/2008/11/18th-county-of-london-battalion-london.html

 

Although his number was issued about a year after the TF was created, perhaps he had had some previous military service which made him a candidate for the CSM role by 1915.

Edited by travers61
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  • adrian 1008 changed the title to Henry William Brooks London Irish Rifles
adrian 1008

Further "light interogation" of the grand daughter suggests he may have joined up with his younger brother Frederick Brooks who was a postman. His (Fredericks) attestation (From Ancestry) shows Feb 1909, which fits with colleagues above.

 

I am still mystified  as to a relatively short service in France.

 

Btn diaries have the Btn being stood down on 5th Feb 16, the day Henry and 8 others leave France. No evidence of injury, no disciplinary matter. Would he have returned home to undergo Officer training ?

 

But he next appears in 1917 as part of a training Btn of the London Irish

 

and in Sept 18 is awarded the freedom of the City of London apparently for being an RSM in the London Irish Rifles

 

Colleagues expertise and thoughts as ever appreciated

freedom doc 2.png

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Mark1959

Could be he was not quite A1 on med fitness and it was decided he was more use at home. Might be worth looking at the others sent home on 5/2/16. If any have surviving papers it might indicate a common theme. 

edit

New theory:

Expiration of TF service

See Augustus Sibbald. 664. He enlisted in TF 20 Feb 1909 number 664 . Extended in 1913 etc. Was discharged 2 weeks after his return on 22/2/16  on "temination of engagement".

Denis Fitzpatrick 617 enlisted 18/2/1909. Extended 1913 etc. Discharged termination of engagement 21/2/16, Returned to UK wounded in Oct 1915.

George Hewlett 437 enlisted 9/2/1909. As above. Returned to UK 16/2/16. Discharged TofE 3/3/16

These 3 men are on same medal roll page. All have surviving docs. All at approx 7 years service from date of joining. 

I think we have a pretty certain cause for his return. The 18th were sending their TofEs home. 

So did Brooks stay on but only as a Home Soldier? Looks like he enlisted 18-20 Feb 1909

Fitzpatrick ended up as a CSM before discharge but declared no previous service in 1909.

Edited by Mark1959
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adrian 1008

I think you ve hit the nail on the head. Thank you

 

He s time expired on his voluntary service, joining in Feb 1909 so has returned home. He has 3 children and a wife at home so volunteers again for home service and is posted to 15th London Regiment as an Instructor, re mustering with a new number of 595966 .He is appointed RSM and Acting WO. His grand daughter recollects him being on the staff of  Wilsons  Grammer School OTC in Camberwell, where he remains until 1919.

 

In 1939 he volunteers again and is an instructor with the Home Guard

 

Now how does the freedom of the City link !! ?? I ve not seen this before, but am a very junior sleuth !

 

 

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adrian 1008

thank you Mark, again very helpful, I have emailed the clerk to see what is available

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