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Here is a nice group I have in my collection. With the research I have

managed, so far.

HOWEVER: I have TWO, so far UNANSWERED QUESTIONS:

i) There is a M.I.D. Oak leaf on the Victory Medal, but I have not been able

to find any London Gazette entry for a MID for Shearcroft. ??????

ii) He has, so far as I can tell, service from 1914 to 1918 and service from

1928 to 1948. BUT this is not to say that he also does not have service

also from 1919 to 1927 - I just don't have any documentation which

shows his entire career. But we DO KNOW that he has at least 24

years of military service.

And YET, despite this - he has no LONG SERVICE MEDAL. WHY???

Surely, a man with more than 20 years service to King and Country should

earn some sort of LONG SERVICE MEDAL ??????????? Does anyone

have any idea why this particular man does NOT have one......?

This group is PICTURED in my ALBUM in the COLLECTORS IMAGE GALLERY

Lt. Col. Reginald James SHEARCROFT, M.B.E.

East Surrey Regiment

By David R. Bennett © 31 March 2013

Reginald James Shearcroft was born in Pimlico, London, on 5 December 1892 (cf. 1901 Census) and was living at that time in North Sheen, Surrey. (However, another source has him born on 14 January 1893). He enlisted as a ‘local enlistment’ in the Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) – Territorial Force Battalion, where he received the number 5776. He then transferred to the East Surrey Regiment, (and was given the number L/14214) whose 5th and 6th Battalions (Territorial) did not see action at the Somme, but were part of the Mesopotamian Expeditionary Force (who forced the Turkish surrender in Mesopotamia). The Battalion then went to India, returning later (6th Battalion) for service in the Aden Protectorate – from 29 January 1917 to 29 November 1917. In January 1918, the Battalion returned again to India, arriving in Bombay on 14 January, and they remained in India for the rest of the War. By the end of the War, the Regimental number for Shearcroft had changed again, to 240050, (as it appears on his BWM and AVM) and he had been promoted to the rank of Sergeant, according to his Medal Index Card. His medal group was also accompanied by a brass nameplate, “Sgt. R.J. Shearcroft”.

It is thought that Shearcroft then joined the India Army, for, when we next hear of him, he is appointed as a Conductor on the India Miscellaneous List, as of 1 January 1928. Next, he receives his first Commission - as a Major (Commissary) - on 15 November 1935 (India Miscellaneous List). This was also confirmed in the LG No. 34275 of 17 April 1936. At this time, the Adjutant General in India was Lt Gen. Sir Walter Leslie, KCB, KBE, CMG, DSO (who had held the position since 1 April 1932). He was then succeeded by Lt Gen. Sir John E.S. Brind, KCB, KBE, CMG, DSO on 1 April 1936. A “special appointment” to Shearcroft was made in January 1936, as an ‘Officer Supervisor’ in the Adjutant General’s Office at the AG Branch, Army Headquarters. Maj. Shearcroft (as he was then) assumed the position of officiating Personal Secretary to the Adjutant General (first Leslie, then Brind) in place of Lt.Col (Commissary) Jackson, OBE, who was on leave from India from 1 February 1936 until 6 November 1936.

Then, on 1 August, 1937 Shearcroft is attached, as Assistant Secretary (D.3) to the Defence Department in Delhi – it is thought in a very superior confidential position, right at the centre of power. He is shown in the I.A.L. of October, 1939. During this period, Major Shearcroft was made a Member of the British Empire (Military) and his M.B.E. was announced in the London Gazette No. 34518 of 9 June 1938. As of 27 October 1941, Shearcroft is promoted, again, this time to Lt Col. (Commissary), Indian Army Departments. This promotion was formalised in the London Gazette No. 35440 of Friday, 30 January 1942.

Finally, in April 1944, the Indian Army List shows Lt. Col. R.J. Shearcroft as holding the appointment of Director of Military Regulations and Forms, Defence Department. The last reference we have is the London Gazette of 25 February 1949 (LG No. 38546) which lists the retirement from the Indian Army, on 14 June 1948, of Lt Col. R.J. Shearcroft.

Readers will of course recall that India gained formal independence from Britain on 15 August 1947.

NOTES:

  1. Shearcroft’s 1914-1919 Victory Medal shows an Oak Leaf device, for having been “Mentioned in Despatches”. HOWEVER, I cannot find any London Gazette record of him having been M.I.D.
  2. Shearcroft had a fairly long military career, including War Service. He has at least four years service in 1914-1918. To qualify for a T.F.W.M. he needed four years service before August 1914. And then, from what we know, above, he has further service from at least 1928 to his retirement in 1948. At least 20 years. So a minimum length of service of 28 years

or more, some of it (for ‘long service’ purposes) counting double, in war time. And, yet, despite this service, Shearcroft’s group does not show any LONG SERVICE award??This is very strange. Why no long service award? Unless he did qualify for one, but for whatever reason, the actual medal is missing from his group?Anyone have any answers / ideas???

Group of TEN medals to Lt. Col. Reginald James SHEARCROFT, MBE.

Member of the British Empire (t.2) GVR. Military.

British War Medal, 1914 – 1920

Allied Victory Medal, 1914-1919, British version, with M.I.D. Oakleaf

Terrritorial Force War Medal, 1914-1919

1939 – 1945 Star

Burma Star

British War Medal, 1939 – 1945

India Service Medal, 1939 – 1945

Jubilee Medal, GVR, 1935

Coronation Medal, GVIR, 1937

By David R. Bennett © 31 March 2013

Edited by David B 1812

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Hello David......

As far as an L.S.G.C. to an officer.....

Officers as Gentlemen were not normally entitled to a LSGC as Officers at that time were expected to have Good Conduct and perform Long Service and therefore did not need to be rewarded for it......

Now I have seen Officers from that period wearing a LSGC, but yes these are people who have served the required time in the ranks before being commissioned......

I have a group in my collection that starts off in the Boer War as a Corporal in the Gordon Highlanders and between the the BW / WW1 went into the Indian Army as a Sub-Conductor and then a Conductor with the Indian Ordnance Corps...... Then served with the IOC during WW1 with the rank of Captain and no L.S.G.C.......

Mike

Edited by QSAMIKE

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Yes. of course I understand that the LS&GC medal was usually only awarded to the

ranks, but what about the various Efficiency Medals and Decorations?

Or his MBE (awarded in 1939 when he was a major). He was promoted to Lt. Col

in 1941, performed more important duties, etc and served another ten years.

I would have thought advancement to an OBE or a CBE would have been

appropriate, but apparently, the Army thought otherwise.........

Seems a bit mean to me................

BW

David B 1812

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I have just discovered, through some diligent research, that SHEARCROFT did in fact qualify for, and receive an Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Indian) type GVR 3rd Issue. It was auctioned by Dix Noonan Webb - Lot 621 - of their auction of 28-29 March 2012. How or why this LS&GC Medal came to be separated from Lt Col Shearcroft's main group (of ten medals) I do not know. The main group is in my collection. I am following up with DNW to try to contact the buyer - in the hope of a re-unite.

I can also add that Shearcroft left the Indian Army in 1948. He emigrated, with his wife, to South Africa in 1949 and died in Salisbury, Rhodesia on 8 September 1967. I have owned this medal group since I bought it in Johannesburg in 1987 from Messrs P&G Coin Co. (for R533 !!!!!!  - can you believe it..... ???). Anyway, EVEN THOUGH I have owned the group for these past 28 years - and have often admired it as one of my largest groups, it was just yesterday pointed out to me by a very sharp fellow collector that the RIBBON for Shearcroft's 1939-1945 India Service Medal is NOT the India Service Medal ribbon, but is in fact the ribbon of the Distinguished Service Medal ..... !!!!!!!!!!!!!  This is very odd and most curious......   A possible answer is that the military tailor who mounted the group confused the two ribbon types (they are in fact VERY similar) ...... OR  had he run OUT of the correct ribbon, using the DSM as a "replacement" ?  We may never know the answer...................????

036 Bennett Collection 201 - Lt. Col. R.J. Shearcroft - E.SurrR and Indian Army.jpg

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Indian Army list April 1934 has him on the miscellaneous list as a Conductor A. H. Qrs (G.S. Beh.), gives his date of birth as 5/12/92. He will presumably be in the 1941 War services list but whether that will give anything relating to his pre IA service is unlikely.

Paul

 

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War Services of British and Indian Officers of the Indian Army 1941 shows:

"Major (Comsy) , IML: Asst. Secy., Defence Dept., 1 Aug 37 to 12 May 39; Estabt. Officer, Defence Dept. 13 May 39. The war of 1914-21- Aden 29 Jan 17 to 29 Nov 17

The October 1946 Indian Army List shows:

Lt Col (Commissaries) Shearcroft, Reginald James, MBE, born 14 Jan 1893, Director of Mily, Regis, and Forms, Defence Dept. effective 27 Oct 41.

Regards, Gunner 1

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Thank you, guys, for your recent comments and additional information.   A GOLD STAR and 10/10 to any man (or lady) who can produce a PHOTO of Lt. Colonel Reginald James Shearcroft, MBE....................... !!!!!!!!!! :-)

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Sounds like a serious staff wallah!  But a photo would be nice, yes, as that's an impressive rack of gongs and would look very very good on a dress uniform!  Good luck with the hunt. 

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MEDAL - Re-United with MAIN GROUP........................ AT LAST,............................ !!!!!!!

Finally I have acquired from the previous owner the ARMY LS&GC medal (INDIA) which was missing from Lt. Col. Shearcroft's impressive group. So the COMPLETE group, now looks like THIS:

 

Shearcroft, Lt Col R.J. MBE i.jpg

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