Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Alfred Walter Gillingham enlisted 26 August 1914

My great or grand uncle Alfred Walter Gillingham enlisted one hundred years ago on 26 August 1914 in the British Army Service Corps. Born Paddington, London the son of Richard & Ada Gillingham he was a 19 year old motor mechanic.  So far I've identified five great uncles who served in WW1 in either the British or Australian armies.  I think Alfred is the first of the five to enlist.

Not knowing much about the Army Service Corps (ASC) I took a look at the British newspaper collection with The Daily Mirror in August 1914 noting that it is the ASC's job to see that the British soldier gets it all (food, ammunition and other necessities of campaigning) - and in good time.  The Long,Long Trail website has some good information on the ASC.

From Alfred's WW1 service record I've found that he served overseas (France I think) in Oct/Nov 1914 for 51 days before being knocked down by a motor car and hospitalised for 6 days in England. He was again overseas (France I think) from July 1915 for 3 years 261 days.  I plan to look further at what his war service entailed.

I have remembered Alfred Walter Gillingham on the Lives of the First World War website and plan to add some details in due course.

I have just started participating in Operation War Diary which is a project to tag the National Archives digital war diaries.  This will be really useful & it is quite easy to do the tagging so I hope the unit diaries I want to look at in more detail get tagged as part of this project.

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