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Grey Squirrel

National Registration Act 1915

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Grey Squirrel

I'm assuming that the original records compiled in August 1915 were lost / pulped etc... but does anyone know anything to the contrary? Does The National Archives at Kew hold any, or the IWM, or local county record offices?

Thanks!

grey squirrel

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doogal
I'm assuming that the original records compiled in August 1915 were lost / pulped etc... but does anyone know anything to the contrary? Does The National Archives at Kew hold any, or the IWM, or local county record offices?

Thanks!

grey squirrel

now that is a good point. I'd be interested. Just thought I'd keep this thread near to the top.

I'll also have a look thriough the NA catalogue to see what has become of them - they may count as a census, so be out of circulation until 2015.

doogal

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Tony Lund

I have always assumed that it was under the same rules as a census and we would be able to get at it in 2015. I hope so. Nobody in the local library had ever heard of it when I first made enquires. It would be useful to know for certain, but I do not know who to ask.

Tony.

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alan jones
I'm assuming that the original records compiled in August 1915 were lost / pulped etc... but does anyone know anything to the contrary? Does The National Archives at Kew hold any, or the IWM, or local county record offices?

Thanks!

grey squirrel

Excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is the National Registration Act 1915 and how might it help research? Is it enlistment registers?

Regards,

Alan

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doogal
Excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is the National Registration Act 1915 and how might it help research? Is it enlistment registers?

Regards,

Alan

It's also known as the Derby Scheme - it can be seen as the first step on the road to conscription. The main website gives a good background and history of how the Act operated and came into being.

doogal

sorry! - SEE National Registration as different to the Derby Scheme, which came just after

Edited by doogal

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BeppoSapone
I have always assumed that it was under the same rules as a census and we would be able to get at it in 2015. I hope so. Nobody in the local library had ever heard of it when I first made enquires. It would be useful to know for certain, but I do not know who to ask.

Tony.

I don't like the fact that no-one in your local library has heard of the National Registration Act. Maybe the papers have not survived? Although I would be delighted to be told that I am wrong.

Certainly, the papers of the Tribunals that looked at the cases of individual Conscientious Objectors have not survived. The establishment burned them in 1922.

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Tony Lund

This is my attempt to explain it, corrections are always welcome.

The 15th August 1915 was National Registration Day, which was intended to register every adult in the country, aged between fifteen and sixty-five years of age, and establish what skills and dependants they had.

All the men who had registered and who were considered to be eligible for military service were invited to attest their willingness to be called to serve in the army if required, or volunteer to be conscripted according to some opponents of the scheme. The attested men were placed in groups, depending on whether a man was single or married, age and usefulness to the war economy, each group to be called in turn, single men first. There was no legal compulsion to attest, and although most men were visited at home and subjected to persuasion, many did not attest and some did not even register. This was known as Lord Derby’s scheme, after its originator, the doorstep canvassers were instructed to be polite at all times and to attempt to get men to attest by persuasion. Not everybody made them welcome. Holmfirth lay within an area that had strong political and religious groups some of which were seriously opposed to conscription in any form. One man who was imprisoned as a wartime conscientious objector was later appointed Mayor of nearby Huddersfield.

The Reverend P. L. Snowden, Vicar of Hepworth, summarised the situation in these terms:

“Now the Government have introduced the Munitions Bill and a Bill for taking a census of the nation to show what every single person can do for her in her need. The nation as a whole is to be organised for working and fighting in order to bring victory to our cause and arms. It is easy to see, on the face of it, how the proposed legislation will tend to produce the hoped for result. It will, to some extent, do away with shirkers, set us all working, and organise our efforts in the most useful directions. In this way it will produce visible, material war results. There will be also other results not so easy to recognise, because not visible; but I believe even more influential in bringing the war to an end, vis, the effects of this legislation upon the national character.

“The reports of the daily papers show that some masters and men are still greedily grasping after abnormal profits and excessive wages. Not the nation’s need, but Self is the consideration uppermost in the minds of such people, and no doubt the proposed legislation will do something to scotch this evil spirit and lift us up to a moral level, making it possible for God to give us peace.”

Tony.

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Terry_Reeves

I think you will find that the actual registration papers have not survived. There were two forms, a green one for men and a pink one for women. The information required was very basic: essentially full name , date of birth and occupation. The forms were then returned to the Local Government Board offices where the the names of men of military age, that is 18-40, were transferred to a pink slip. Those men in essential occupations had a black star placed alongside their name and were often referred to as "starred" men. I have blank examples of these forms.

Terry Reeves

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Stephen Nulty

The disclosure of census returns is covered by the Public Records Act of 1958. The 1915 Registration Act is not referred to in this Act, although interestingly enough the National Registration carried out for the Second World War is.

The status of all currently undisclosed census returns, covered by the 1958 Act, is shown below.

Census Date Disclosure

2 April 1911 100 year closure - will be opened 1st January 2012

19 June 1921 100 year closure

26 April 1931 Destroyed during WW2

29 September 1939 WW2 National Registration - 100 year closure

8 April 1951 100 year closure

23 April 1961 100 year closure

25 April 1971 100 year closure

5 April 1981 100 year closure

21 April 1991 100 year closure

29 April 2001 100 year closure

Edited by Stephen Nulty

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Stephen Nulty

The other point to note is that the registers compiled for the 1915 Act were held locally and not centrally.

To the best of my (limited) knowledge, the 1915 National Registration Act did not produce a single central repository for information.

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Grey Squirrel

Thanks to everyone who troubled to respond. Looks like this enquiry is worth pursuing further.

It would be quite depressing if Terry is right and they have been lost/destroyed. The address was included as well as name and date of birth, of course, as it was the means by which people could potentially be called up.

But I am still hopeful that there might be some surviving records and will post again if I find out more: I might ask at the British Library, as I'm going there, next week.

Grey Squirrel

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Tuntun

Grey Squirrel, did you ever manage to track down any of the 1915 Derby scheme registers?

Martin

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Guest

Another thread on this, a few weeks ago. HERE

' The Inspector ' offered this;

" I understand that according to the Act, the register was to be kept only for the duration of the war and it was regarded as too costly. "

Cheers Mike

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Terry_Reeves

Martin

The National Registration Act, along with the implementation the Derby Scheme and the subsequent tribunals came under the auspices of the Local Government Board. In turn , all the administration was carried out by the local authorities. When the Local Government Board was abolished in 1919, it was replaced by the Ministry of Health which took over many of its duties. The new ministry ordered all these records destroyed. It is known that a handful of records of the Military Service Tribunals were retained by a very few local authorities in defiance of these instructions, but there appears to be no evidence to suppose that those of the NRA have.

TR

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Tuntun

Gentlemen, thanks for your replies. It's a shame they don't appear to have survived but I will be making a visit to the Cheshire Records Office in a month or so and will ask them if any tribunal records are still held on the off-chance.

Thanks

Martin

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Zoe Toft

In my Great-Great-Grandfather's papers I have discoverd two certificates relating to the National Registration Act 1915. They are folded card, with "National Registration Act, 1915" on the front, and then inside:

"This is to Certify that

(a) [NAME]

(B) [OCCUPATION]

© of [ADDRESS]

has been Registerd under the National Registration Act 1915.

Signature of Holder _______

GOD SAVE THE KING"

What were these cards for?

I am also confused as the ages give to my Great Great Grandfather and Great Great Grandmother on these certificates would suggest they were filled out in 1936 and 1923 respectively. The certificate for my GG Grandma is what may have been pink (now creamy orange), and the one for my GG Grandpa is what may have been blue (now grey).

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healdav

If you would like a copy of a registration document, I can send you a scan of my grandmother's document.

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ss002d6252
What were these cards for?

They were to prove they had registered - the Registration Act was effectively a census of those who were within the age range (15-65) to be available for work/military service. The details collected formed the basis of the registers later used for conscription.

Craig

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Henry5

Did enlisted men have to register on the national registration act 1915

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Terry_Reeves

No, they did not.

TR

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