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RNR in WW1


stegfish
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Apologies if my post appears to ask a dense question but I have recently found out that my Great Grandfather John Edward Lycett served in the RNR in WW1 rising to the rank of Lt.

He lived in Liverpool and prior to me stumbling on his apparent service with the RNR the family thought he had not served at all but were not sure how he had managed to avoid service. It was never mentioned or discussed.

I am trying to find out what role the RNR played in WW1 and also how I can track down whether he was shore based or at sea? Is this only available from Kew? What would I look for in Kew? I believe that since he was an officer, his records are not included in the NA Online Seamans records - is this correct?

Any help would be gratefully received - the rest of his generation of the family were all army men so I hadn't expected a naval link and haven't had to look one up before.

Thanks

Tracey :)

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From my experience of looking for my Great Grandfather I was told to try the Fleet Air Arm Museum and I contacted them regarding his service record. I eventually (it does take a while) got a reply and they had passed on a copy of the service record to me. It does tell you a fair bit especially where he served as well as how he looked.

The link to the site, click under research.

http://www.fleetairarm.com/indexFlash.htm

I had also been told that people serving in the RNR were in some way connected to the Fishing/Sailing profession. I found this untrue as my Great Grandfather was a Coal Miner from Musselburgh, Scotland.

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From my experience of looking for my Great Grandfather I was told to try the Fleet Air Arm Museum and I contacted them regarding his service record. I eventually (it does take a while) got a reply and they had passed on a copy of the service record to me. It does tell you a fair bit especially where he served as well as how he looked.

The link to the site, click under research.

http://www.fleetairarm.com/indexFlash.htm

I had also been told that people serving in the RNR were in some way connected to the Fishing/Sailing profession. I found this untrue as my Great Grandfather was a Coal Miner from Musselburgh, Scotland.

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Hi! Thank you for the information - I will contact them and see how far I can get.

Best wishes

Tracey

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I still think a fair amount of RNR were from the seafaring professions though. My great grandfather was a fisherman from Sennen, Cornwall and served at sea during the First World War. I have also done rather a lot of reading about Cornwall during the Great War and it becomes clear that many Cornishmen from coastal communities were in the RNR, and in fact men in general in Cornwall preferred service in the Navy to the Army. The call up of the RNR in St Ives early on in the war was met with big scenes of cheering and celebrating in the town, from both locals and tourists as the RNR marched through the centre.

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"I had also been told that people serving in the RNR were in some way connected to the Fishing/Sailing profession. I found this untrue as my Great Grandfather was a Coal Miner from Musselburgh, Scotland."

I suppose there are always exceptions to the rules;

The regulations referring to the entry of trawler ratings into the R.N.R. did not err on the side of laxity. The qualifications were the same as for those of the regular R.N.R., except that the limits of age of entry were fixed as not under eighteen nor over thirty years, although these were afterwards altered. The ratings were second hands, enginemen, deckhands and trimmers. To be rated second hand a man had to prove that he had served in a British steam trawler for at least two years and possessed a Board of Trade certificate as second hand. A deck hand had to prove that he had served in a British steam trawler for at least two years with general satisfactory conduct, that he could box the compass, steer, heave the lead, tell the marks and pull a good oar. Otherwise his qualifications had to be the same as that of a seaman in the regular Reserve. The enginemen had to have been in charge of the engines of a trawler for at least one year with satisfactory certificates, and the trimmers were required to have served in the stokehold or engine-room of a trawler for at least one year. The enlistment was for five years with not more than three similar re-enlistments.

Regards Charles

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Hi Tracey, welcome aboard the wet section

Getting back to the subject of this thread -- John Edward Lycett was a commissioned officer in the Royal Naval Reserve, rising to Lieutenant (equivalent to an army captain), not a rating like Pandabean’s Great Grandfather.

You are correct: RN officers records are not amongst the online papers and none of the RNR papers are online. The relevant index to RNR officer's records is offline at Kew in ADM 240/84, which you will need to cross reference to another volume in ADM 240 for his actual service record try to see the example in Bruno Papplardo, ‘Tracing Your Naval Ancestors’ (PRO book, 2002). That should give you details of both his Naval service and his Merchant Navy service too. You can also get basic details from the 'Navy List,' the RNR are in a separate section. There are some pals on the forum who sometimes do look ups for that.

His medals will be found on the alphabetical medal roll ADM 171/92 (probably a 1914/15 Star trio).

The RNR served anywhere the regular navy did, but also saw more service on modified merchant ships like armed trawlers, Armed Merchant Cruisers etc.

All the best

Per Mare

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  • 3 years later...

Apologies if my post appears to ask a dense question but I have recently found out that my Great Grandfather John Edward Lycett served in the RNR in WW1 rising to the rank of Lt.

He lived in Liverpool and prior to me stumbling on his apparent service with the RNR the family thought he had not served at all but were not sure how he had managed to avoid service. It was never mentioned or discussed.

I am trying to find out what role the RNR played in WW1 and also how I can track down whether he was shore based or at sea? Is this only available from Kew? What would I look for in Kew? I believe that since he was an officer, his records are not included in the NA Online Seamans records - is this correct?

Any help would be gratefully received - the rest of his generation of the family were all army men so I hadn't expected a naval link and haven't had to look one up before.

Thanks

Tracey smile.gif

Hello Tracey

I know it is years since you made this post and you may no longer be monitoring this forum, and you may anyway have found out all the information you need about your great-grandfather. I am presently working on a project to transcribe WWI ships' logs. In particular I am working on HMS Mantua, whose crew included Sub Lt J E Lycett, who is presumably your great-grandfather. He was serving on the Mantua on the Atlantic Patrol until October 1916 when the ship was taken out of service for a refit and all her crew were deployed elsewhere. The reason I came across your post was because I was trying to find out where some of the Mantua's officers went after that date.

The logs are currently available at the National Archive or National Maritime Museum. I think there may be a long term plan to make them publicly available online, but presently they can only be accessed as part of the Old Weather project (www.oldweather.org). I am sure you would find the Mantua's logs very interesting as your great-grandfather is mentioned a lot as being in charge of boarding parties or armed guards - also he has occasionally signed the logbook when he was officer of the day.

In working on the log books I have hoped for the crew that they made it through the war and went back home to lead normal lives, and I was so pleased to see your post, because now I know that for Sub Lt Lycett this is what happened - sadly that's not been the case for a number of them.

Very best wishes

Su

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