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Hello - can anyone help?

My father-in-law is desperate to find out more about his Dad's service in WWI. He has said he wants to know before he passes on and he is 84 so we are trying hard for him!

I have applied to Kew for his service history and it gives some info but not much detail.

He was a 2nd lieut in the Royal Garrison Artillery Hants 2/7th company based in Southampton. He went to Belgium and was injured on May 29th 1917 having his foot shot off, which was later amputated in a field hospital before returning to Dover and having more of his leg removed over here. In that hospital he met his future wife who nursed him.

We know bits and bobs but I would like to know where he went and which battles he was involved in (or could have been).

I've done lots of family tree research but never military stuff and I am stick to know where to look now to find out where he was. Messines Ridge and Vimy Ridge has been mentioned, but we aren't sure if that is where he went or was just mentioned afterwards. Those who are interested now were either too small to ask or can't remember what was said......

Can anyone help please? He was called George Frederick Nuthall (Service number NW/7/9568) born 13/3/1896.)

Thank you

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In June 1916 Nuthall was serving with No. 4 Company, Hants RGA at Plymouth.  He went to France and Flanders on 1 August 1916 but I have not yet been able to identify his unit.  The notation 'NW/7/9568' is not his service number (officers did not have service numbers at that time); it is just a notation of a minute note which is probably no longer available.  Do his officer's papers from Kew indicate any Heavy Battery or Siege Battery in which he served overseas (there should be a "Casualty Form" that lists the units in which he served overseas)?  Interestingly I cannot find him indicated as wounded in any of the Royal Artillery casualty lists in the RA Institution Leaflets issued during the period of his "injury".


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Thank you Gunner 1.

I applied to Kew for all they had and there was no Casualty listing, no mention of any Battery, only 2/7th Company. There is an Arrival report which has "9/Artillery N/67" in the top left-hand corner which I have attached. Not sure if this is of any help.

Another letter he wrote requesting his medals says he was injured on May 29th 1917 (rather than just left the field of battle) and the story he told is as written above, indicating that he was treated in the field hospital before he left for England....

I was expecting some kind of memo or note to say what happened, but Kew have not sent that and my request was for everything about him and any info on the injury.

However just the info you have supplied above is fascinating. I will have another look through all the bits I have to see if anything indicates another number.


17 (16).jpg

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Nutlet:  The information I posted came from the June 1916 Monthly Army List and his medal index card.  Interestingly I can not find him mentioned in the Hampshire Territorial Record.  Are you sure that there is not a copy of Army Form B 103 (Casualty Form - Active Service) in his service file?  If there is and you can post it, we might be able to determine his RGA postings.

Gunner 1

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Hi Gunner 1

I have looked at the medal index card and have no idea how what is there relates to what you wrote, hence I feel somewhat ill-equipped to identify what may be useful in the stuff I have.

I have looked and looked and there is no Casualty form. There are 29 pages from Kew and lots of them seem to be memos or admin notes, but as I said there may be info on them and I just don't know what to look for.

I will message you the link in case you want to have a look through all the pages. Is it possible Kew missed something or could the Casualty form be held somewhere else with something else? It is strange that he is not appearing on the lists you have.....

Thank you for your help.


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  • 8 months later...

I have been looking through endless internet searches for more clues to telling his story.

I have found a list of the various batteries in the Royal Garrison Artillery and the dates that they first went overseas. As my Grandfather in law went to France on 1st August 1916 and the 139th and 140th siege battery left on that day, I am optimistically wondering if he was in one of these units.

I cannot find any information regarding where these units went and when - living memory recalls tales of Messines and Vimy as previously mentioned.

I am hoping that somewhere there is a diary which will mention something happening on the date that he was wounded which will link in to verify something.

Any help or pointers on this would be grateful.

Many thanks

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If you have WO374/51003 is there no indication at all of the unit he served with while overseas?

This doesn't help your search but I imagine you've seen the London Gazette entry stating he's to be 2nd Lieutenant 9/6/15.

I had a quick look at the 1939 register, it gives his occupation as Army RGA retired and ARP Dover DC, is there perhaps anything to do with the RA in Dover where he may have worked behind a desk? If so it might be worthwhile asking there, that's if he's the correct GF Nuthall.

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Hello Tony

Unfortunately, when I applied for his service record, there was no sign of any documentation stating who he served with, only that he left for active service on 1st August. I have pretty much drawn a blank in finding out where he was and am now somewhat clutching at straws. I suspect that the rest of his records were destroyed in the WWII activity, but thought that if I could find something about the 139th/140th there may be some clues that would link him to them.

Thank you for the info above though; it would have been him as he went to Dover hospital following his return to England after being wounded and remained in the area for some years, working in the RGA record office. Ironic, therefore, that his own record is now incomplete

My father in law is 85 this year and asked me again the other day if I had found anything else. He has not given up hope that the information is there somewhere, and so I thought I would post again and try this avenue.

I wonder if there is any benefit in my going to Kew and having a search myself.......

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Nutlet:  Tony is correct.  You need to check his file at The National Archives. If you can't go yourself you need to have a researcher digitally copy his file for you.  If you need the name of a researcher PM me and I can give the name of mine who is quick and quite reasonable, usually charging £10-£20 for digitally copying the entire file unless it is extremely large.  What you need is the so-called "Casualty Form" which is light-blue colored and lists all of the officer's postings during the war.  He was originally commissioned into No. 4 Company, Hampshire RGA but as the "Arrival Form" that you posted in your Post #3 indicates, he was "Hants RGA, seconded got duty with the RGA" which usually means that he was serving with on the Western Front with a regular RGA unit, rather than Territorian RGA unit.  Unfortunately quite a few siege and heavy batteries went to France and Flanders in early August 1916 (date he disembarked in France and Flanders). 

Regards, Dick Flory


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