23 December 2020

Sherwood Foresters - 7th (Robin Hood) Bn (TF)

This post will look at regimental numbering in the 7th (Territorial Force) Battalion, The Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Regiment) between 1908 and 1914. The 7th and the 8th Battalions of this regiment were administered by the 
Nottinghamshire County Association whereas the 5th and 6th Battalions were administered by the Derbyshire County Association.

Until the 1st April 1908, the 7th (Robin Hood) Battalion, Sherwood Foresters had been the Robin Hood Rifles, 1st Nottinghamshire Rifle Volunteers. The battalion had an inauspicious start in 1859 when just six names were put forward after the Lord Mayor and the Lord Lieutenant sought to raise a volunteer unit. However, by March 1908 the 'Robin Hoods' was a two-battalion corps with no fewer than eighteen companies and a strength of 1500 men. 

The new 7th Battalion was headquartered at Derby Road, Nottingham and all eight companies drew men from the city of Nottingham. By August 1914 the battalion formed part of the Notts & Derby Infantry Brigade in the North Midland Division. 

Here are some sample regimental numbers and joining dates for the the 6th Battalion, The Sherwood Foresters.

293 joined on the 1st May 1908 
899 joined on the 3rd March 1909
1198 joined on the 24th February 1910 
1285 joined on the 10th January 1911 
1475 joined on the 8th January 1912 
1760 joined on the 4th April 1913 
1946 joined on the 29th January 1914 
2624 joined on the 16th September 1914 

A reserve or ‘second-line’ battalion was formed at Notingham on the 19th September 1914, the original 7th Battalion now becoming the 1/7th Battalion and the new reserve battalion becoming the 2/7th Battalion. A 3/7th Battalion would be formed at Nottingham on the 1st March 1915. The 2/7th Battalion would serve overseas from February 1917 but the 3/7th never did so, becoming the 7th Reserve Battalion in April 1916 and ultimately absorbing the 8th Reserve Battalion. 

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 he would have joined this battalion in early 1912.  

The photograph on this post shows men of D Company, 7th Battalion; winners of Sir Charles Seely's Football Challenge Shield in 1909. The original photograph appears in the regimental annual for 1910.

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To search for photos of your Sherwood Foresters ancestors, check my British Army Ancestors website.

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