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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

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Help dating a photo


Pip

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This is a picture of my father field kitchen he centre group right in full chef whites , am trying to date and find further info, likely location and so on 

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1 minute ago, Pip said:

This is a picture of my father field kitchen he centre group right in full chef whites , am trying to date and find further info, likely location and so on 

Screenshot_20220609_225918_com.facebook.katana.jpg

Hi Pip. What maybe useful is if you can share details of your father, such as name, service number, regiment etc. This in turn may assist a member in suggesting a location for the photograph, the information of which may come from a War Diary or article in the press. 

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Pip,

can you perhaps post his details, name, DOB, service number etc.  That  might help tie him to a time and place.

Andy

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They look like a row of ‘hay boxes’ in front of the cooks and just behind you can see the mobile field kitchen (one per company in 1914).  The hay boxes were insulated and each one could hold a sealed dixie full of e.g. hot stew and then the insulated lid was closed over the top.  CQMSs could arrange in most circumstances to move these forward to the front line companies at night.  It usually took two carriers (ration party men) to carry each hay box via a pole fashioned through the lid’s ring handles using rope binding.  The insulation worked very well and the food was, barring disasters, still very hot when it was opened.  It was designed to continue cooking along the journey.

Going by the general appearance I would date the photo to around 1910-12, although it could be a couple of years either side of that.

NB. Hay boxes probably originated in Scandinavia, but by the time of WW1 they were well known across Europe.  The British Army had a standard type with dimensions designed to fit around the standard issue large size (rectangular) dixie cooking pot.

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Edited by FROGSMILE
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8 hours ago, AndrewSid said:

Pip,

can you perhaps post his details, name, DOB, service number etc.  That  might help tie him to a time and place.

Andy

Thanks Andy, the reason I didn't post any detail is due to a family discussion about who the man is! Some think it is grandad who enlisted in 1912 pte Bartlet Cecil elmes royal Sussex regiment killed in 1914 11 November at the first battle of yrpes, now others think it is my father enlisted royal Hampshire regiment 1938 Robert Bartlett Cecil elmes the confusion I think is that my dad ended up as a cook sergeant and this photo maybe just a red herring unfortunately we don't have many pics for comparison and father and son do look alike , so I was like last time here hoping the community could shed light on the photo with minimal help ,hope that helps 

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Hi Pip, although the detail in the photie is far from brilliant, as Frogsmile says we're looking at the First World War or just slightly before, certainly ling before 1938 and the Second World War 

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5 hours ago, Pip said:

Thanks Andy, the reason I didn't post any detail is due to a family discussion about who the man is! Some think it is grandad who enlisted in 1912 pte Bartlet Cecil elmes royal Sussex regiment killed in 1914 11 November at the first battle of yrpes, now others think it is my father enlisted royal Hampshire regiment 1938 Robert Bartlett Cecil elmes the confusion I think is that my dad ended up as a cook sergeant and this photo maybe just a red herring unfortunately we don't have many pics for comparison and father and son do look alike , so I was like last time here hoping the community could shed light on the photo with minimal help ,hope that helps 

As 6RRF says it’s almost certainly the earlier period, Pip.  By 1938 most of the infantry (certainly the regulars) were in battle dress uniform with folding field service caps.  The men in your photo are wearing the older service dress uniform and accompanying headdress .  There was no ‘catering corps’ during the WW1 period, but instead a system of regimentally badged cooks trained at the ASC school in Aldershot, with a very small trade group of ASC cooks to provide a core feeding facility at the formation level headquarters.  From the way the men are dressed the location is at home in Britain, probably at the battalion’s annual summer training camp.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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