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Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

Article about: Hello all, I have always wanted to look into the service history of my Grandfather who passed away when I was a small child. I am unsure where to begin and what I can actually find out with

  1. #1

    Default Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    Hello all,

    I have always wanted to look into the service history of my Grandfather who passed away when I was a small child. I am unsure where to begin and what I can actually find out with the details I have. If anybody would care to offer any advice I would be extremely grateful.

    Here is what I know from my Grandmother, it is worth noting that some of these details may be incorrect or inaccurate. It has been a long time since my Grandmother has discussed this and my grandfather rarely talked about his experiences during WW2.

    His name was William Henry Wright, born in Birmingham on the 2nd of September (I am currently unsure of the year). He joined the British army at the age of 16 and served in Palestine before the outbreak of the Second World War.

    I have been told that he was at Dunkirk and then went on to fight in North Africa and Italy with the British Eighth Army. My Grandmother has told me that he was also somehow involved in the liberation of Bergan-Belsen however i am aware that the 8th Army were not.

    Other details I have were that he was a Sergeant Major (I am not sure which appointment) until he was demoted to sergeant after striking a French Officer (i have no idea how much truth there is to that). His medals have unfortunately been lost amongst my fathers large family and i am currently trying to track them down. He was also apparently mentioned in dispatches for bravery.

    I know this is a bit of a long shot but any advice would be most welcome!

    Ash.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.


  3. #3

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    Quote by Adrian Stevenson View Post
    Thanks Ade, thats a great help! When I first looked at the form I thought the service number was required, but below it states that "SERVICE NUMBER AND/OR DATE OF BIRTH MUST BE INCLUDED", which should be possible.

    Thanks again.

    Ash

  4. #4

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    not sure if your still trying to find any infomation on this but my grandad was also in the 8th army and served at the places you have discussed and has told us several times about the liberation of belsen and how he was a part of that and their regiment walked to a nearby town and showed the people living there what was going on under there noses. I have alot of infomation available on this as my grandad has helped write several books and done many interviews so if you want anymore info feel free . hope this helps

  5. #5

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    Quote by riirii93 View Post
    not sure if your still trying to find any infomation on this but my grandad was also in the 8th army and served at the places you have discussed and has told us several times about the liberation of belsen and how he was a part of that and their regiment walked to a nearby town and showed the people living there what was going on under there noses. I have alot of infomation available on this as my grandad has helped write several books and done many interviews so if you want anymore info feel free . hope this helps
    Hi riirii93,

    Thanks for your reply! I have since been able to get hold of his service record and have discovered that he served with the 7th Medium Regiment RA (25/26 BTY) in Egypt, Greece, and Crete. Later he was posted to 107 Medium Regiment and fought in N.W.E.

    Although some of the details I had heard originally were slightly inaccurate we are still very much under the impression that he was in some way present at Belsen at some stage, although I can't place 107 at the location. I have heard that although lots of regiments were present at Belsen, the records of their involvement often left this out or don't mention assistance provided at the camp.

    I would be interested in any information you have and indeed anything your grandfather has written on the subject. That would be fascinating at the least!

    Many thanks,

    Ash

  6. #6
    ?

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    Many Allied troops at or towards the end of hostilities were taken to see these terrible sights, they need not have been posted there. My father (RAF) was taken with an American unit to Buchenwald, and he explained that the idea was to show as many as possible why they were/had been fighting the war. He remained deeply affected by those sights until his death.

    Kind Regards,

    Andy

  7. #7

    Default Re: Tracing service history of my Grandfather, British 8th Army.

    hi my grandfather was also from birmingham and served in the 8th army all i know was he was in egypt,who knows maybe they knew each other,my family emigrated to new zealand and i dont know any english family members i can ask,so im curious as to whether you had any luck in your search ,if so can you offer me any tips

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