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Remembered Today:

No 4 Company, 3rd Divisional Train ASC

J Banning

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I have been asked by a friend to find out where her grandfather was 'in the war'. The details she has (which agree with what is on her grandfather's medal card) are that he was in the Army Service Corps, No 4 Company, 3rd Divisional Train. I know that he was out in August 1914 and went through the entire war and had offered to photograph his unit's war diary for the duration of the war. She could then plot his movements on a map. I have told her that, in 4 long years, he would have been most places but she still wants to complete this (mammoth) task.

I was at the National Archives yesterday and pulled the files WO95/1542 - 1547 which contain the No 4 Company War Diaries. I was most confused to see that No 4 Company was actually in 5th Division, not 3rd Division. Also, No 4 Company had previously been No 2 Company and was changed at the outbreak of war

Confused? Me too!

So, I was wondering if there were any ASC experts out there who could decipher this riddle? The soldier's medal card gives him as No 4 Company, 3rd Divisional Train but it appears that this is wrong as No 4 Company was actually 5th Division. So, what should I be looking at?

As I don't want to risk photographing 100s of pages of the wrong war diaries, I thought I'd ask. I am regularly at the NA but am normally looking at infantry/artillery records and this is the first ASC query I have had.

I have not named the soldier as I have not checked with my friend that she is happy for me to do so. I assume that this will not have an effect on the question as this is solely a unit question.

Any help in answering this is greatly appreciated.


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ASC company numbering is a bit of a sod.

One way of looking at it is to distinguish between 4 and 4th; 2 and 2nd etc.

4 Company ASC was indeed a corps troop for the 5th Div in Italy, where it was Train, No. 2 Company (Horse Transport).

A divisional train had 1 (HQ), 2, 3 and 4 companies. In the case of the above, your 4 Company was the 2nd Company of the ASC Train in the 5th Div. As 2 Company, 4 company was the second of four. If you see what I mean.

5th Division ASC Train.

1 (HQ); 2; 3; 4 Companies

6; 4; 37; 33 ASC Companies.

So to 4 Company, 3rd Div. In the BEF tables of 1912, the 4 (ie the fourth of four) company of the 3rd Division was 29 Company, ASC. If one looks at the deployment of ASC companies 14-18; 29 Company is again shown as Train, No. 4 Company (HT), 3rd Div.

3rd Division ASC Train.

1 (HQ); 2; 3; 4 Companies

22; 15; 21; 29 ASC Companies.

If I had to bet on it, and choose only one of the above, I'd go for 29 Company. Which is WO95/1409-12.

Maybe the medal roll would be definitive.

Best wishes,


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It seems you have solved this very easily. I agree that the ASC company numbering is not too easy to understand.

The MIC says that he was in the Army Service Corps, No 4 Company, 3rd Divisional Train. From your post above I can only imagine that this is actually 29 Company.

I'll take a look at the files next time I'm at the PRO.

cheers for your help - greatly appreciated


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