Prior to 1908 the Gloucestershire Regiment had two Militia battalions, the 3rd and the 4th. When the Special Reserve was formed in 1908, the 4th Militia Battalion was disbanded and men from it and from the 3rd Militia Battalion were encouraged to transfer to the newly formed 3rd (Special Reserve) Battalion.
Unlike many Special and Extra Reserve Battalions which, when they were formed, simply continued with the old militia series of numbers that had been in use, the 3rd Gloucestershire Regiment started numbering from 1.
Recruiting for the militia as a whole, ceased on 15th January 1908 and from the following day, all enlistments were for the Special Reserve. See my earlier posts on the creation of the Special Reserve and the Special Reserve appendices for the full detail.
The first number currently on my database for the 3rd (Special Reserve) Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment is number 57 who joined on 20th January 1908 having previously served with the 4th Militia Battalion. The last number on my database is currently 3279 who joined on 3rd November 1914.
In that first year, 1908, over 700 men enlisted with the 3rd Gloucesters (number 711 joined on 30th December 1908) but then recruitment slowed dramatically, averaging roughly 300 recruits a year (for instance, less than 800 men joined up between 1st January 1909 and 10th January 1912).
Here then, are some army service numbers and corresponding joining dates for the 3rd Gloucesters between 1908 and 1914.
57 joined on 20th January 1908
721 joined on 1st January 1909
1059 joined on 1st March 1910
1323 joined on 2nd May 1911
1517 joined on 10th Janaury 1912
1815 joined on 11th January 1913
2015 joined on 27th March 1914
2104 joined on 13th August 1914
2616 joined on 3rd September 1914
3219 joined on 15th October 1914
3271 joined on 3rd November 1914
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Also see my other posts on the Gloucestershire Regiment:
1st and 2nd (Regular) Battalions, The Gloucestershire Regiment
4th (Territorial Force) Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment
5th (Territorial Force) Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment
6th (Territorial Force) Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment
The Service Battalions, The Gloucestershire Regiment
View Gloucestershire Regiment service records, pension records and medal index cards on-line.