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    I collect and research British Medals, (home and colonial)awarded to recipients bearing my own clan surname, inclusive of any spelling permutation - eg Symonds; Symmonds; Symmons; Symons; simmonds; simmons; simonds; simons etc.

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  1. Bearing in mind that he was foremost a Doctor, I just wonder what unit Dr. Henry Symonds might have been in during WW1. Whereas his QSA from the Anglo-Boer war is inscribed "Doctor H. Symonds Kimb. Town Guard", both his BWM and Vic are just simply inscribed "Capt. H. Symonds", with no unit given. - I can only guess something like the South African Medical Corps or similar. He lived at "Armagh House" in Kimberley which was actually named by RH Henderson, merchant and mayor of Kimberley during the siege when he officiated at the opening of the Town Hall in September 1899, and again in 1903. Henderson hailed from Armagh, Ulster, Ireland. Armagh House was designed by Carstairs Rogers c.1896. Dr. Symonds was certainly living there by 1914 (Frieda more likely made him buy the house as it reminded her of her family home). From available directories it would appear that he lived from 1900 to 1907 at 109 Du Toitspan Road and had his consulting rooms at Gassons, 52-54 Du Toitspan Road. By 1914-1924 he lived at Armagh House and his consulting rooms were still at Gassons. For information - Du Toitspan is the village surrounding the Dutoitspan and Bultfontein Mines. It was renamed Beaconsfield and operated as a separate municipality until 1912 when it was amalgamated with the municipality of Kimberley.
  2. I have recently published on the web my Great Uncle's war-diary written when he was under seige at Kimberley during the Anglo-Boer war. It started off as a letter to his brother Edward, but ended up one of the most riveting day-by-day accounts of the siege. If of interest to members, please visit http://wasfu-man-kimberleysiege.blogspot.co.uk/. He was a doctor who lived at Du Toit Span, just outside Kimberley and who joined the Kimberley Town Guard and who ran a stretcher party and who attended to the wounded during the siege. I have his medals, including a silver star given to him by the grateful mayor of the town for his services. The attached picture shows him surrounded by his team of dedicated ambulancemen. Happy reading, Wasfuman
  3. Many thanks indeed Brett for your help - any suggestions as to a way forward on this one - any contacts you can suggest in Pretoria? Living in UK I know nobody over there. Best wishes, Richard
  4. TNA Website is "The National Archives" where most surviving records for the British Armed Forces are kept - possibly only about 10% of the whole are now digitized although many records were lost to enemy action during the Blitz.
  5. Gentlemen whilst on the subject of South African Medals, I acquired a bundle of BWMs recently amongst which was one issued to Sapper W.E.Cooke SAEC, which I take to refer to South African Engineer Corps. I cannot find his MIC on the TNA Website, nor any service papers. My question is, what theatre of war is this recipient likely to have served in, and was this a common or a scarce unit. Basically, I know very little about this unit and would like to discover more, and even better, anything about the recipient. Cheers Richard
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