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The Guardroom

Z 24th Trench Mortar Battery RFA ?

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The Guardroom

Any RFA experts able to tell me more on this battery please.

Not sure what he Z is for on the CWGC record, is it his troop ?

Tracing a Gunner 58591 William Edward Charles Burton who was KIA on Christams Eve 1916. He has no garve so guess he was blown up ?????

Looking on the long trail, I am not sure if thsi was a light or heavy TM Bty or what they would have fired on the enemy trenches. Read up on stokes mortars etc

Many thanks,

Alan

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pw643

Alan

By 1916 most divisions had 3 Medium Trench Mortar Batteries, numbered X Y& Z

Therefore Z24TM would be 24th Division who had the 6". The battery were broken up in early 1918 and split between X & Y Bty's making them up to 6 x 6"

Haven't come across what action they were involved with on that period.

Hope this adds a little

Paul

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The Guardroom

Thanks Paul foe that explanation.

Did they play an active parta s a permanant bty on the frontline or sit behind near the reserve lines and mortar the enemy?

I guess they have a war diary that will give a location, if no one else can help

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pw643

Alan

I am not an expert on TM Bty's but finding exact positions for Artillery units has been quite difficult for me even just researching one battery. I will stand corrected but I think that Medium TM Bty's would not be directly on the front line, nor would they be at their max range.

There may well be a War Diary but at what level the TM's diary would be written ?(Div/Bde) even then the exact position of theTM's may not be recorded.

As an example I have approx 30 positions of 1 Bty RFA, some of these are Guns and some are the Wagon Lines. By looking at the front line at the time it is easy to determine between them. On one occasion two guns were put in the front line trench and used in the direct fire role to good effect.

I hope you get a TM expert reply as I am now getting the bug!

Paul

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The Guardroom

Thanks Paul.

Looking into further it seems that last action the 24th Division were involved in was at Battle of Guillemont on 3-6 Sep 1916. Although I don;t know if he DOW, I can guess that this si what was the cause of his death on Christmas Eve 1916.

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pw643

Alan

I doubt that the action you mention specifically caused his death in December as (I am making more assumptions) I think as he is on the Loos memorial and has no grave (which would suggest KIA rather than DOW) he could have been killed/missing presumed dead.

As the Artillery spent more time in position than would an Infantry Bn/bde, his death may have no bearing on a specific action which always seems to refer to the Divisional Infantry. There are many other (too many) ways or reasons he could of died. If he WAS a casualty then there are also records at WO for some of the Casualty clearing stations, Field hospitals etc.

If he was anywhere near his mortar dump at the time with a single incoming shell, then he would have no remains to find. (Sad but there were so many)

Sorry to be so negative and with no firm answers, your repost may have stirred up some more interest.

Regards Paul

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AlisonS

Hi I know that these posts are a few years old but was wondering if you had any more info about the z 24th mortar trench bat. I also have an interest in finding out what, where and who of this battery. My daughters' g g grandfather was attached to the 824th trench morar battery and is buried at VILLERS STATION CEMETERY, VILLERS-AU-BOIS. I think the 8 is incorrect as there are a couple of other members of the RFA who were z 24th batt. This cemetery is mainly Canadian. As I understand it, the cemetery was near a field hospital. Thomas George Styles died 17 Nov 16. He'd married the year before and his son was born the year after. Sad but probably now unusual.

If you do have any more info please can you let me know if there are any records that I can look into to find out how he earned his MM. This is recorded in the LG after his death. Thanks Alison

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kevinrowlinson

Hi Alison and welcome to the forum,

Your first starting point should be to read the war diary for this divisional trench battery at the Nat. Archives at Kew. The reference is WO 95/2198, http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/displaycataloguedetails.asp?CATID=-2242310&CATLN=7&Highlight=%2CTRENCH%2CMORTAR%2CBATTERIES&accessmethod=0 . There may be something written about what happened even if no specific reason is given for the award of the MM.

Kevin

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AlisonS

Thanks for the info. I'll have a look when I manage to get there again.

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AlisonS

Finally managed to get to Kew. Thanks for the reference. Went and looked at the diaries, which have been prepared for scanning. Also looked at another set which were far more detailed. At least I found out the movements of the battery before they got to Vimy Ridge.

Again, thanks for the help.

Alison

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