5 March 2021

Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) - 7th Battalion (TF) - 1908-1914


Here's another Scottish Rifles post. This time I will be looking at regimental numbering in the 7th Battalion (TF), The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) between 1908 and 1914.

The 7th Battalion was formed on the 1st April 1908 and prior to this had been the 3rd Lanark Rifle Volunteers. The Territorial Year Book for 1909 recorded that the battalion strength was 35 officers and 453 men. Colour Sergeant J L Main was the best shot of the unit. 193 men attended camp in 1908 for 8 days, with 196 men attending for 15 days.

The following year, The Territorial Year Book for 1910 recorded that the strength was 8 officers and 774 men and at the annual camp at Troon in 1909, 360 officers and men had attended for eight days whilst 391 officers and men had attended for 15 days. Private W J Clark of A Company was the best shot of the unit. Camp in 1910 was scheduled from the 16th July at Denny.

The battalion was headquartered at Victoria Road, Glasgow and, in common with the 5th and 8th Battalions was administered by the City of Glasgow County Association, drawing all of its recruits from Glasgow. It too 
formed part of the Scottish Rifle Brigade with the Lowland Division.

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 7th Battalion (TF), The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). The battalion started a new regimental number series from 1 on the 1st April 1908, the bulk of the numbers in 1908 being issued to serving members of the old Volunteer Force predecessor battalion.

22 joined on the 1st April 1908
554 joined on the 15th March 1909
964 joined on the 9th March 1910
1034 joined on the 28th January 1911
1110 joined on the 30th January 1912
1228 joined on the 5th February 1913
1409 joined on the 21st January 1914
1616 joined on the 7th August 1914

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example if your man's number was 1500 he would have joined the battalion between January and August 1914. 

Remember. I research soldiers!

To search for photos of your Scottish Rifles ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) - 5th Battalion (TF) - 1908-1914


In this post I will look at regimental numbering in the 5th Battalion (TF), The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) between 1908 and 1914.

The 5th Battalion was formed on the 1st April 1908 and prior to this had been the 1st Lanarkshire Volunteer Rifle Corps. The Territorial Year Book for 1909 recorded that the battalion strength was 40 officers and 592 men. Sergeant D Reid was the best shot of the unit. Thirty officers and 339 men attended camp in 1908 for 8 days, with eight officers and 123 men attending for 15 days.

The following year, The Territorial Year Book for 1910 recorded that the strength was 37 officers and 896 men and at the annual camp at Troon in 1909, 531 officers and men had attended for eight days whilst 313 officers and men had attended for 15 days. Colour-Sergeant Instructor Kensit was the best shot of the unit. Camp in 1910 was scheduled from the 16th July at Denny.

The battalion was headquartered at 261 West Princes Street, Glasgow and was administered by the City of Glasgow County Association. The battalion drew all of its recruits from the City of Glasgow and 
formed part of the Scottish Rifle Brigade with the Lowland Division.

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 5th Battalion (TF), The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). Unlike the majority of newly formed Territorial Force battalions, the 5th Scottish Rifles did not start a new regimental number series from 1 but carried on from where the old Volunteer Force numbering had left off.

5161 joined on the 13th April 1908
5882 joined on the 22nd March 1909
6106 joined on the 17th February 1910
6268 joined on the 15th March 1911
6345 joined on the 23rd February 1912
6601 joined on the 9th May 1913
6736 joined on the 27th January 1914
6820 joined on the 5th August 1914

The battalion reached the number 9999 in September 1915 and then commenced a new number series beginning from 1. (So beware gleeful eBay sellers proclaiming "low number!" when selling their 5th Battalion Scottish Rifles medals. Here, a low number does not equal an early enlistment. Gets me every time).

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example if your man's number was 6000 he would have joined the battalion between March 1909 and February 1910. 

The photo on this post shows officers of the 1/5th Battalion. It was published in The Tatler on the 28th April 1915.

Remember. I research soldiers!

To search for photos of your Scottish Rifles ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

16 February 2021

Black Watch - 7th Battalion (TF) - 1908-1914

This post will look at regimental numbering in the 7th (Fife) Battalion (TF), The Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) between 1908 and 1914.

The 7th Battalion was formed on the 1st April 1908 and prior to this had been the 6th (Fifeshire) Volunteer Battalion of the Black Watch (Royal Highlanders). The Territorial Year Book for 1909 recorded that the battalion strength was 38 officers and 701 men. Sergeant A Wilkie of H Company was the best shot of the unit. 524 men attended camp in 1908 for 8 days and 139 attended for 15 days.

The following year, The Territorial Year Book for 1910 recorded that the strength was 34 officers and 1002 men and at the annual camp at Largoward in 1909, 675 officers and men had attended for eight days whilst 167 officers and men had attended for 15 days. Private H Dexter of C Company was the best shot of the unit. Camp in 1910 was scheduled from the 16th July at Kinghorn.

By August 1914 the battalion was headquartered at St Andrews with recruits drawn from the following areas:

A Company: Dunfermline
B Company: Lochgelly
C Company: Kircaldy
D Company: Cowdenbeath
E Company: Cupar, with drill stations at Newburgh, Auchtermucht and Abernethy
F Company: Leven with drill stations at Colinsburgh and Largoward
G Company: St Andrews, with drill stations at Guardbridge, Anstruther and Crail
H Company: Leslie, with drill stations at Markinch and Thornton

The battalion formed part of the Black Watch Infantry Brigade with Scottish Coast Defences.

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 7th Battalion (TF), The Black Watch (Royal Highlanders).

61 joined on the 2nd April 1908
746 joined on the 27th January 1909
1294 joined on the 31st March 1910
1397 joined on the 25th January 1911
1655 joined on the 11th April 1912
1786 joined on the 14th January 1913
2025 joined on the 30th April 1914
2083 joined on the 6th August 1914

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example if your man's number was 1500 he would have joined the battalion between January 1911 and April 1912.

Remember. I research soldiers!

To search for photos of your Black Watch ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

Black Watch - 6th Battalion (TF) - 1908-1914

This post will look at regimental numbering in the 6th (Perthshire) Battalion (TF), The Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) between 1908 and 1914.

The 6th Battalion was formed on the 1st April 1908 and prior to this had been the 4th Volunteer Battalion of the Black Watch (Royal Highlanders). The Territorial Year Book for 1909 recorded that the battalion strength was 17 officers and 354 men. 109 men attended camp in 1908 for 8 days and 133 attended for 15 days.

The following year, The Territorial Year Book for 1910 recorded that the strength was 23 officers and 752 men and at the annual camp in 1909, 349 officers and men had attended for eight days whilst 392 officers and men had attended for 15 days. Camp in 1910 was scheduled from the 16th July at Annsmuir.

By August 1914 the battalion was headquartered at Tay Street in Perth with recruits drawn from the following areas:

A Company: Perth
B Company: Perth
C Company: Dunblane, with drill stations at Bridge of Allan, Doune and Callander
D Company: Grieff, with a drill station at Comrie
E Company: Balirgowrie, with drill stations at Coupar, Angus and Alyth
F Company: Auchterarder with drill stations at Blackford and Dunning
G Company: Birnam, with drill stations at Pitlochry, Ballinluig, Stanley, Luncarty and Blair Atholl
H Company: Aberfeldy, with drill stations at Kenmore, Fortingall, Grandtully and Killin

The battalion formed part of the Black Watch Infantry Brigade with Scottish Coast Defences.

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 6th Battalion (TF), The Black Watch (Royal Highlanders).

331 joined on the 9th April 1908
499 joined on the 23rd March 1909
867 joined on the 28th February 1910
990 joined on the 14th February 1911
1113 joined on the 16th February 1912
1369 joined on the 12th February 1913
1492 joined on the 5th February 1914
1827 joined on the 10th August 1914

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example if your man's number was 1000 he would have joined the battalion between February 1911 and February 1912.

Remember. I research soldiers!


To search for photos of your Black Watch ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

30 January 2021

Norfolk Regiment - 6th (Cyclist) Bn (TF)


In this post I will be looking at regimental numbering in the 6th (Territorial Force) Battalion, Norfolk Regiment between April 1908 and October 1914. 

On the 1st April 1908, the nucleus of the 6th (Cyclist) Battalion, Norfolk Regiment was formed from what had previously been cyclist companies of the four Volunteer Battalions, Norfolk Regiment. A, B, C and D Companies were formed from the VF companies, with E, F, G and H Companies raised subsequently.  The newly formed 6th (TF) Battalion was headquartered at Cattle Market Street, Norwich and distributed as follows:

A Company: Norwich
B Company: Great Yarmouth
C Company: King's Lynn, with a drill stations at Terrington
D Company: Thetford, with a drill stations at Attleborough
E Company: Fakenham, with drill stations at Walsingham, Holkham, Wells and Ryburgh
F Company: Ditchingham
G Company: Watton, with a drill station at Swaffham
H Company: Norwich, with a drill station at Great Yarmouth

The battalion was attached to Eastern Command.

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 6th (Cyclist) Battalion, Norfolk Regiment:

7 joined on the 5th April 1908 
371 joined on the 1st January 1909
601 joined on the 14th March 1910 
710 joined on the 20th March 1911 
826 joined on the 11th March 1913
954 joined on the 10th March 1914
1156 joined on the 7th August 1914 
1272 joined on the 1st October 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Bridlington in October 1914, the original 6th Battalion now becoming the 1/6th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/6th Battalion. A 3/6th Battalion was formed at Norwich in May 1916 and disbanded in March 1916 without ever serving overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/6th, 2/6th, 3/6th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new regimental numbers series which began at 265001 and extended to 290000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example, if your man had the number 555 and lived in Holkham he would have joined the battalion between January 1909 and March 1911 - and probably served with E Company. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your Norfolk Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

Norfolk Regiment - 5th Bn (TF)


In this post I will be looking at regimental numbering in the 5th (Territorial Force) Battalion, Norfolk Regiment between 1908 and 1914. 

On the 1st April 1908, the 5th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment was formed from what had previously been the 3rd Volunteer Battalion, Norfolk Regiment. The newly formed 5th (TF) Battalion was headquartered at East Dereham and distributed as follows:

A Company: King's Lynn
B Company: Downham, with drill stations at Hunstanton, Thornham, Hilgay and Stoke Ferry
C Company: Fakenham, with drill stations at Wells, Syderstone, Aylsham and Corpusty
D Company: Dereham, with drill stations at Castle Acre and Swaffham
E Company: Sandringham, with drill stations at Dersingham, Wolderton, Hillington and West Newton
F Company: Cromer, with drill stations at Melton Constable, Holt, Sheringham, North Walsham, and Gunton
G Company: Great Yarmouth
H Company: Great Yarmouth

By August 1914 the battalion formed part of the Norfolk & Suffolk Infantry Brigade in the East Anglian Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 5th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment:

353 joined on the 22nd April 1908 
1323 joined on the 14th May 1910 
1480 joined on the 10th May 1911 
1582 joined on the 3rd January 1912 
1816 joined on the 14th January 1913 
2077 joined on the 13th January 1914 
2187 joined on the 4th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at East Dereham in September 1914, the original 5th Battalion now becoming the 1/5th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/5th Battalion. A 3/5th Battalion was formed at East Dereham in early 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/5th, 2/5th, 3/5th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new regimental numbers series which began at 240001 and extended to 265000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example, if your man had the number 1700 and lived in Holt he would have joined the battalion between January 1912 and January 1913 - and probably served with F Company. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your Norfolk Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

Norfolk Regiment - 4th Bn (TF)


In this post I will be looking at regimental numbering in the 4th (Territorial Force) Battalion, Norfolk Regiment between 1908 and 1914. 

On the 1st April 1908, the 4th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment was formed from what had previously been the 1st and 4th Volunteer Battalions, Norfolk Regiment. The newly formed 4th (TF) Battalion was headquartered at St Giles, Norwich and distributed as follows:

A Company: Norwich
B Company: Norwich
C Company: Long Stratton, with drill stations at Mulbarton and Saxlingham
D Company: Diss, with drill stations at Harleston and Tivetshall
E Company: Attleborough, with drill stations at East Harling, Keninghall, Banham, Old Buckenham and Watton
F Company: Wymondham, with drill stations at Hethersett, Swardeston, Colney and Hingham
G Company: Brandon, with drill stations at Thetford, Methwold and Feltwell
H Company: Thorpe St Andrew, with drill stations at Loddon, Blofield, Acle, Burgh St Margarets, Framingham Pigot and Coltishall

By August 1914 the battalion formed part of the Norfolk & Suffolk Infantry Brigade in the East Anglian Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 4th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment:

72 joined on the 22nd April 1908 
796 joined on the 5th April 1909
1178 joined on the 9th March 1910 
1392 joined on the 6th March 1911 
1707 joined on the 16th April 1912 
1850 joined on the 5th March 1913 
2028 joined on the 13th March 1914 
2130 joined on the 6th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Norwich in September 1914, the original 4th Battalion now becoming the 1/4th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/4th Battalion. A 3/4th Battalion was formed at Norwich in early 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/4th, 2/4th, 3/4th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new regimental numbers series which began at 200001 and extended to 240000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example, if your man had the number 1600 and lived in Methwold he would have joined the battalion between March1911 and April 1912 - and probably served with G Company. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your Norfolk Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

30 December 2020

Army Service Numbers 1881-1918: a 2020 retrospective

 


As 2020 draws to a close, here are some of my highlights of the year.

  • Including this post, a late flurry in December has seen me publish 41 Army Service Numbers blog posts
  • I wrote 1 Army Ancestry Research  blog post and have effectively abandoned this blog
  • I responded to over 600 British Army research enquiries through my blogs, via Facebook and via email. In the last 365 days I have written hundreds of thousands of words about the British Army.
  • I published 16 blog posts on my British Army Ancestors website and added tens of thousands of photos. The site now has over 100,000 photos and 12m searchable records
  • I continue to post daily on the British Army Ancestors Facebook page and commemorate those who gave so much. The photo on this post was published on the Facebook page on Christmas Day this year.
In addition to social media - restricted to Facebook these days - I delivered a number of online military presentations and published articles. As time allowed, I also continued with my own research projects and have been looking at prisoner of war casualties and the British Army of 1911 for the most part. Lack of funding has prevented me from doing as much as I would have liked to do in these areas.

I managed to buy the missing 1915 and 1919 KRRC Chronicles and was also fortunate to buy a complete run of Oxfordshire Light Infantry chronicles - and successor regimental titles - from 1892 until the 2000s. I continue to be tempted by books, photos and medals and have bought and sold all in small quantities

So what else is in store for 2021?

I will continue with the daily posting on the British Army Ancestors Facebook page and having added enhancements to the main site, will continue to improve the functionality. I will continue posting on this blog with a target post count of 40. 

I will continue delivering online webinars and have been invited to host a two-day British Military history seminar in November and am very much looking forward to this.

Covid-19, wokeism, assaults on freedom of speech, revisionist history and the destruction of national monuments have combined to make 2020 a dreadful year. I can only hope that 2021 will be better.  

I research soldiers! 
Contact me if you need help.

25 December 2020

Yorkshire Regiment - 4th Bn (TF)

This post will look at regimental numbering in the 5th (Territorial Force) Battalion, Alexandra Princess of Wales's Own (Yorkshire Regiment) between 1908 and 1914. 

On the 1st April 1908, the 4th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment was formed from what had previously been the 1st Volunteer Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment. The newly formed 4th (TF) Battalion was headquartered at Northallerton and distributed as follows:

A Company: Middlesbrough
B Company: Middlesbrough
C Company: Yarm-on-Tees, with drill stations at Great Ayton, Stokesley and Hutton Rudby
D Company: Guisborough, with drill stations at Eston, South Bank and Grangetown
E Company: Richmond, with drill stations at Catterick, Eppleby and Reeth
F Company: Redcar, with a drill station at Marske by the Sea
G Company: Skelton, with drill stations at Carlin How, Lingdale and Loftus
H Company: Northallerton, with drill stations at Bedale, Thirsk, Easingwold, Brompton and Helperby

By August 1914 the battalion formed part of the York & Durham Infantry Brigade in the Northumbrian Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 4th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment:

14 joined on the 1st April 1908 
682 joined on the 25th February 1909
1125 joined on the 18th May 1910 
1153 joined on the 25th January 1911 
1338 joined on the 1st February 1912 
1602 joined on the 22nd February 1913 
1832 joined on the 12th February 1914 
1979 joined on the 11th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Northallerton on the 4th September 1914, the original 4th Battalion now becoming the 1/4th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/4th Battalion. The Long, Long Trail website picks up the story of the 2/4th:

"Formed at Northallerton on 4 September 1914 as a home service (“second line”) unit. Troops began to arrive from 10 September. Supplied first drafts for overseas service in May 1915. 1 March 1915: came under orders of 189th Brigade, 63rd (2nd Northumbrian) Division, which was broken up in July 1916. 9 November 1916: transferred to 220th Brigade, 73rd Division. July 1917: reduced in strength; eventually disbanded in England November 1917."

A 3/4th Battalion was formed at Northallerton in March 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/4th, 2/4th, 3/4th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new regimental numbers series which began at 200001 and extended to 240000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example, if your man had the number 1200 and lived in Redcar, he would have joined the battalion in 1911 - and probably served with F Company. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your Yorkshire Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

Yorkshire Regiment - 5th Bn (TF)

This post will look at regimental numbering in the 5th (Territorial Force) Battalion, Alexandra Princess of Wales's Own (Yorkshire Regiment) between 1908 and 1914. 

On the 1st April 1908, the 5th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment was formed from the amalgamation of the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, East Yorkshire Regiment, and the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment. The 2nd VB, East Yorkshire Regiment had had six companies at Howden, Bridlington, Beverley, Driffield, Market Weighton and Hessle. Meanwhile, the 2nd VB, Yorkshire Regiment had had seven under-strength companies at Malton, Hovingham, Scarborough (two companies and the HQ), Hemsley and Pickering. The newly formed 5th (TF) Battalion was headquartered at Scarborough and distributed as follows:

A Company: Market Weighton, with drill stations at Pocklington, Newbald and Stamford Bridge
B Company: Bridlington, with drill stations at Filey, Hunmanby and Flamborough
C Company: Beverley, with a drill station at Cottingham
D Company: Driffield, with a drill station at Sledmere
E Company: Scarborough
F Company: Scarborough
G Company: Pickering, with drill stations at Helmsley, Kirbymoorside, Grosmont, Ebberston and Thornton Dale
H Company: Malton, with drill stations at Sand Hutton, Sheriff Hutton and Hovingham

By August 1914 the battalion formed part of the York & Durham Infantry Brigade in the Northumbrian Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 5th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment:

29 joined on the 4th May 1908 
726 joined on the 2nd March 1909
1022 joined on the 19th February 1910 
1149 joined on the 29th March 1911 
1244 joined on the 16th April 1912 
1453 joined on the 2nd May 1913 
1608 joined on the 20th March 1914 
1784 joined on the 12th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Scarborough in September 1914, the original 5th Battalion now becoming the 1/5th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/5th Battalion. The Long, Long Trail website picks up the story of the 2/5th:

"Moved to Darlington in November 1914 and Benton in April 1915. Later moved to Catterick. On 1 March 1915 came under orders of 189th Brigade, 63rd (2nd Northumbrian) Division, which was broken up in July 1916. All category A1 men, now deemed by the Military Service Act to be available for overseas service, were posted. On 9 November 1916, battalion transferred to 220th Brigade, 73rd Division and moved to Blackpool. By January 1917 was at Chelmsford. 29 March 1918, disbanded in England."

A 3/5th Battalion was formed at Scarborough in March 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/5th, 2/5th, 3/5th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new regimental numbers series which began at 240001 and extended to 265000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. For example, if your man had the number 1500 and lived in Driffield, he would have joined the battalion in 1913 - and probably served with D Company. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your Yorkshire Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

West Yorkshire Regiment - 8th (Leeds Rifles) Bn (TF)


This post will look at regimental numbering in the 8th Battalion (Leeds Rifles), The Prince of Wales's Own (West Yorkshire Regiment) between 1908 and 1914. 

Both the 7th and the 8th Battalions, formed in April 1908, were derived from the 3rd Volunteer Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment and both were headquartered at Carlton Barracks, Leeds; both drawing their men from Leeds. At the time when Britain went to war with Germany in August 1914, both battalions formed part of the 1st West Riding Infantry Brigade in the West Riding Division. 

Both the 7th and the 8th Battalions operated independent regimental number series and the numbers and dates below are taken from surviving service and pension records of men who signed up with the 8th Battalion: 

274 joined on the 21st May 1908 
560 joined on the 20th January 1909
1053 joined on the 3rd January 1910 
1200 joined on the 9th January 1911 
1255 joined on the 24th January 1912 
1519 joined on the 28th April 1913 
1769 joined on the 11th June 1914 
1930 joined on the 7th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Leeds on the 14th September 1914, the original 8th Battalion now becoming the 1/8th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/8th Battalion. Although the battalion had been formed to take in men surplus to establishment and then to provide drafts for the 1/8th Battalion, the 2/8th eventually served overseas in its own right from January 1917, serving alongside the 2/7th. Meanwhile, a 3/7th Battalion had been formed at Leeds in March 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/7th, 2/7th, 3/7th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a new numbers' series which began at 305001 and extended to 330000. 

Use the regimental numbers above, which were issued sequentially, to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. 

I have borrowed the photo on this post from the Leaves from a Leeds Album blog. It shows Arthur Shoesmith, formerly of the 3rd Volunteer Battalion, who later served with the 8th Battalion (regimental number 12) and ended the war as a company sergeant major.

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your West Yorkshire Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

West Yorkshire Regiment - 7th (Leeds Rifles) Bn (TF)


This post will look at regimental numbering in the 7th Battalion (Leeds Rifles), The Prince of Wales's Own (West Yorkshire Regiment) between 1908 and 1914. 

Both the 7th and the 8th Battalions, formed in April 1908, were derived from the 3rd Volunteer Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment and both were headquartered at Carlton Barracks, Leeds; both drawing their men from Leeds. At the time when Britain went to war with Germany in August 1914, both battalions formed part of the 1st West Riding Infantry Brigade in the West Riding Division. 

Both the 7th and the 8th Battalions operated independent regimental number series and the numbers and dates below are taken from surviving service and pension records of men who signed up with the 7th Battalion: 

833 joined on the 10th July 1908 
1020 joined on the 18th March 1909
1297 joined on the 10th March 1910 
1445 joined on the 3rd February 1911 
1556 joined on the 8th February 1912 
1742 joined on the 21st April 1913 
1895 joined on the 30th March 1914 
2265 joined on the 11th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Leeds on the 15th September 1914, the original 7th Battalion now becoming the 1/7th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/7th Battalion. Although the battalion had been formed to take in men surplus to establishment and then to provide drafts for the 1/7th Battalion, the 2/7th ultimately served overseas in its own right from January 1917. Meanwhile, a 3/7th Battalion had been formed at Leeds in March 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/7th, 2/7th, 3/7th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a new numbers' series which began at 265001 and extended to 305000. 

Use the regimental numbers above, which were issued sequentially, to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. 

The photo on this post shows an unknown Leeds Rifles corporal.

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your West Yorkshire Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

24 December 2020

West Yorkshire Regiment - 6th Bn (TF)


This post will look at regimental numbering in the 6th (Territorial Force) Battalion, The Prince of Wales's Own (West Yorkshire Regiment) 1908 and 1914. 

Until the 1st April 1908, the 6th Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment had been the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment and by 1914 it was headquartered at Belle Vue Barracks, Bradford, its eight companies drawing men from Bradford. The battalion formed part of the 1st West Riding Infantry Brigade in the West Riding Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 5th Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment:

101 joined on the 1st April 1908 
693 joined on the 16th March 1909
993 joined on the 8th February 1910 
1123 joined on the 12th January 1911 
1287 joined on the 28th March 1912 
1419 joined on the 4th February 1913 
1575 joined on the 29th January 1914 
1740 joined on the 5th August 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Bradford on the 12th September 1914, the original 6th Battalion now becoming the 1/6th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/6th Battalion. Although the  battalion had been formed to take in men surplus to establishment and then to provide drafts for the 1/6th Battalion, the 2/6th eventually served overseas in its own right from February 1917. Meanwhile, a 3/6th Battalion had been formed at Bradford in March 1915 but never served overseas.  All three battalions - the 1/5th, 2/5th, 3/5th - issued numbers from the same regimental number series and from 1917 reissued numbers to serving soldiers and to new recruits from a brand new numbers series which began at 240001 and extended to 265000. 

Use the regimental numbers above to estimate when a man would have joined this battalion between 1908 and August 1914. 

Remember. I research soldiers! Drop me a line if you need help 

To search for photos of your West Yorkshire Regiment ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.