The Manchester Regiment Forum

The Great War => 1914 - 1918 => Topic started by: Tim Bell on March 01, 2013, 07:05:26 PM

Title: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on March 01, 2013, 07:05:26 PM
I'm looking at a chap named John Bell on the MIC.  No discharge mentioned. No SWB or 1914/15 Star and transferred to Middlesex Regt.
Does his new No. prefix G/102588 mean anything.  I can't find any other records, but he had a very common name!  He is not a known relative, but you never know.

Any ideas?

Thanks again.

Tim
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: harribobs on March 01, 2013, 08:48:45 PM
The G is for general service, ie war service

chris
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on March 02, 2013, 11:48:53 PM
Thanks Chris,


Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on June 29, 2013, 07:08:40 AM
Found him through a link on the host site to the National Roll

Private John Bell 8378

John Bell transferred to the Middlesex Regiment.  Service in England and proceeded to India in February 1916. Stationed at Allahabad.  Later service in China and Siberia.  Demobilised in May 1919 after being invalided home to 18 Gomm Street Ardwick, with heart trouble.

Just wonder why he didn't go to France with 17th Bttn in Nov 1915.  Possibly health issues stopped him going on the more 'Active' service.  Any ideas?

Still no evidence as being a relative.

T
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Robert Bonner on June 29, 2013, 10:34:03 AM
Tim.

It looks as if John Bell was originally with the 2nd Bn but was medically downgraded  BI or BII and transferred to the newly formed !st Garrison Bn Manchester Regiment formed at Knowsley Park, Liverpool in September 1915. Officers and men for this battalion were classified as permanently unfit for active service but fit for service abroad in a garrison or labour battalion.

The battalion sailed to India on 25 February 1916 and HQ was initially based in Allabahad. After India the battalion was split in two and stationed in Singapore & Hong Kong. Meanwhile a British naval force had already landed at Murmansk in March 1918, and five months later troops of the 25th Battalion Middlesex Regiment sailed into Vladivostok. They too were a Garrison Battalion, sent out to the tropics in 1917.

In September 1918 a platoon of the Manchesters based in Hong Kong was sent to Vladivostock to reinforce the Middlesex, remaining with them until returnng to the UK late in 1919. 
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on June 29, 2013, 01:34:00 PM
Hi Robert,

Thanks very much.  John Bell 8378 was originally in III Platoon, A Company of 17th Battalion.  Does this still make it likely for him to have transferred direct to the 1st Garrison Bttn.?  Or did he join this via the 2nd Bttn?

The explanation of these men is new on me.  It makes a lot of sense and fits in with another person - whose name escapes me at the moment.

Cheers

Tim
Title: Re: John Bell 8378 & G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on June 29, 2013, 04:50:47 PM
Robert,
It seems a major coincidence for one John Bell who served in 17th Bttn and Middx, Regt (MIC), not to be the same J Bell that served in the 2nd Bttn and Middx Regt (Roll). 

The roll says he enlisted in August 1914, but the 17th was formed in September 1914 (backdated to August) and I think 8378 is not one of the original numbers from 2nd Sept 1914 (A Bell is 8055).  The dates of discharge are also a month different.

The confusion could be the 2nd City Btn being the 17th and the date of formal discharge may have followed a period of civilian life.

I've written a separate post about the strength of the National Roll.  I will handle with care.  Your clarification is great though.

T
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Robert Bonner on June 29, 2013, 05:27:55 PM
Tim.
Agreed.  The 2nd Regular Army Battalion was already on active service when John Bell enlisted.  The confusion is, as you say, 2nd City and the 17th being the same unit.

Let me know should you hear of anyone else from the Mcr Garrison Bn - they usually like to include China on their cv.
Title: Re: John Bell G/102588
Post by: Tim Bell on July 11, 2013, 02:17:12 PM
Robert,

I've just come across Thomas Martin 21866 in South Salford AVL.  Also Robert Bonnar!! 22305 and Richard Arthur Crook 21712. Apparently 1st Garrison Batt. M/Chr Regt.

We should probably be using a different thread for this response.  Feel free to move it...

T