Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Obtaining RAF service records - The Rules....


  • Please log in to reply
55 replies to this topic

#1 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 21 December 2009 - 10:06 PM

A little while ago there was a thread related to obtaining RAF service records, there didn't seem to be a consensus of opinion as to the rules so I phoned the relevant department at Cranwell for their advice and they very kindly sent the following details both forms are of current use.

Request for Service Details of Deceased Ex-service Personnel (including information held on casualty records)
Disclosure to General Enquirers

Attached Files


Edited by Peter Clare, 21 December 2009 - 10:20 PM.

  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#2 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 21 December 2009 - 10:19 PM

Request for Service Records of Deceased Ex-Service Personnel Disclosure to Next of Kin or with Consent of Next of Kin
Certificate of Kinship.

Attached Files


  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#3 Savo

Savo

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 October 2010 - 07:16 PM

PC. This is great information to the uneducated like myself. The first three attachments printed off well but the second batch in your second attachment come out very blurred. Maybe my compturer or the size if the attachment is too small. Will be using these forms to request further details on two late Uncles who where with Bomber Command and Coastal Command. My dad who brother was with BC is very keen to find out more about this big bro even though he spoke in detail about what he did. It would be nice to have the facts on paper.
  • 0

#4 CL1

CL1

    .

  • Registered Users
  • 13,787 posts

Posted 03 October 2010 - 08:10 PM

hello Savo

link below for forms
gives all info and the forms you require

Ministry of Defence | About Defence | What we do | Personnel | Service Records | Making a Request for Information held on the Personnel Records of Deceased Service Personnel
  • 0

#5 beakytzw

beakytzw

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 7 posts

Posted 16 December 2010 - 12:49 PM

Use this form for all requests for records, of deceased Service Personnel.

For copies of your own records visit:

http://www.mod.uk/De...ryOfDefence.htm

For Information, the Forms/Applications needed and the addresses to send your requests to.

Hope this helps.
  • 0

#6 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 26 March 2011 - 09:02 PM

I've had a negative and a positive experience with the RAF, and I want to share this with fellow genealogists.

The negative:
I sent a cheque for £30, along with the full name, address at conscription, date of birth, his squadron and non-commissioned rank to Cranwell. They asked if I was aware of his service number (which I wasn't). They said they did not have a service record for this man, according to their records.

After this, I went to Kew, and consulted the list of RAF service numbers in AIR 78. There was only one man with this name and surname on the list. This man's son's birth certificate was ordered, and the same service number was on the certificate.

The positive:
Although WW2 campaign medal rolls are not in the public domain (unlike those of WW1), I applied for the campaign medals for the above airman. (MOD Medals Office - SPVA, Gloucester.) My assumption was that even if the medals had been issued, they could confirm when the issue had taken place, and confirm the service number. There is no cost incurred in applying for medals.

Within 3 weeks of having received the application, they sent the campaign medals, and advised that his service record had survived; they had referred to this when considering the application.

If you get the brush-off from Cranwell, it is still worth applying for the medals, as this is likely to confirm whether the service record still survives, and should be able to confirm (or even advise) of the service number.
  • 0

#7 CL1

CL1

    .

  • Registered Users
  • 13,787 posts

Posted 26 March 2011 - 09:47 PM

Keith welcome to the forum
glad you had a positive result
  • 0

#8 alieneyes

alieneyes

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 460 posts
  • LocationStockholm

Posted 26 March 2011 - 11:52 PM

I'm not sure I would refer to Keith's experience as a "positive" result. It seems that the RAF couldn't be bothered to look for the man's service file, judging that SPVA found it and seemingly with no problem. No doubt the RAF cashed the 30 quid cheque as well.

Wonder how many times this has happened?
  • 0

#9 ramacal

ramacal

    336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA

  • Registered Users
  • 10,135 posts
  • LocationGloucester

Posted 27 March 2011 - 06:53 AM

I had an interesting conversation with the Grandson of a surviving Bomber Command Vet a week ago. The Vet applied for his own records and was told they had been destroyed as per MOD standard procedure. Luckily the Vet had his Flying Log Books, so could look back on his war time service.

It makes you wonder what the hell is going on at their archives and worth asking what the hell is going on.
  • 0

TAC14-VEHICLEMARKINGS_zpsfecb8ddc.jpg


#10 RemeDesertRat

RemeDesertRat

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 1,614 posts
  • LocationLeeds, West Yorkshire.

Posted 27 March 2011 - 07:57 AM

they had been destroyed as per MOD standard procedure.

Thought that was the Luftwaffe's job :D

It makes you wonder what the hell is going on at their archives and worth asking what the hell is going on.

sounds worrying, worth finding out about :(
  • 0
Common sense is so rare these days it should be considered a superpower!

#11 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 27 March 2011 - 10:39 AM

Originally Posted by ramacal Posted Image
they had been destroyed as per MOD standard procedure.


If I get the chance, I'll give records a call tomorrow morning and see what they have to say re the above statement. In my experience they have always been very helpful.
  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#12 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 27 March 2011 - 12:25 PM

I'm not sure I would refer to Keith's experience as a "positive" result. It seems that the RAF couldn't be bothered to look for the man's service file, judging that SPVA found it and seemingly with no problem. No doubt the RAF cashed the 30 quid cheque as well.

Wonder how many times this has happened?


Yes, this is a concern of mine. I think it is outrageous that RAF Disclosures say they are unable to find the record, and willingly process the £30 cheque. yet their colleagues in Gloucester are able to use the same details to find the record, despite there being no fee for this service.

So, if anyone out there does get the same treatment from Cranwell, don't forget to apply for the campaign medals.
  • 0

#13 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 09:27 AM

Just phoned RAF records and they told me that some personnel records were destroyed in the 1970s - 1980s as per MOD procedure, the young lady I spoke to could not give me a reason for this happening as she didn't have that information but she did say that the MOD held the administration files for airmen but that they were not in the public domain.

Sorry can't more helpful
  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#14 Pete Keane

Pete Keane

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 754 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 12:30 PM

I have a question about RAF records - this relates to the long running plaque thread.

Doug Pegrums brother received his service history years ago, but not a Form 280? Apparently this form would contain his address at joining?

Would the form 280 normally be included in a disclosure - if so I will ask his brother to contact them and ask for it.

Cheers

Pete
  • 0

#15 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 01:47 PM

I have a question about RAF records - this relates to the long running plaque thread.

Doug Pegrums brother received his service history years ago, but not a Form 280? Apparently this form would contain his address at joining?

Would the form 280 normally be included in a disclosure - if so I will ask his brother to contact them and ask for it.

Cheers

Pete



Likewise, I applied for my fathers service record some years ago. I got Form 543 and not Form 280, maybe I should phone them again? If the Form 208 is the Administration Form then as I have said, they are not in the public domain.


Regards

Peter
  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#16 Pete Keane

Pete Keane

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 754 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 02:51 PM

I would appreciate it if you could, I think I have found the geographical connection between Doug Pegrum and the others, the form 280 may confirm it - although in my case his brother will have to enquire I suppose.

Cheers

Pete
  • 0

#17 Tab

Tab

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 228 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 03:29 PM

I sent of all the certificates and the £30.00 cheque in December and I am still waiting, they have acknowledged that they have received my request and are dealing with it, so don't expect any thing to happen to quickly.


Well the documents turned up about a week ago and they were quite interesting. They also sent me three pages of information so that I could work out what all the code letters stood for on the records. Guess what they have stopped using the ones concerning my father and I am still trying to sort that out.

Edited by Tab, 13 April 2011 - 10:45 PM.

  • 0

#18 fmills

fmills

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 02 April 2011 - 07:23 PM

My father trained allied pilots to fly B-17's in Alabama in 1943. We're trying to find an RAF pilot named ANGUS WATSON who became a family friend while he was in training there. Over the years we've lost track of him and would like to know more about him and where he was from. I was a young lad at the time and over the years we lost track of him. I'm sure he's deceased by now but would like to find out more.

I don't remember the name of the unit in Alabama and am researching that separately. Perhaps someone could help by telling me how to access RAF records to find those pilots who trained here in the U.S.

Thanks,

Fred
  • 0

#19 sambsmorgan

sambsmorgan

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Posted 13 April 2011 - 08:50 PM

Yes, this is a concern of mine. I think it is outrageous that RAF Disclosures say they are unable to find the record, and willingly process the £30 cheque. yet their colleagues in Gloucester are able to use the same details to find the record, despite there being no fee for this service.

So, if anyone out there does get the same treatment from Cranwell, don't forget to apply for the campaign medals.

Hi Keith

I just joined this forum tonight and am on verge of sending cheque and docs off for my fathers RAF Service records - but on reading all these posts it would seem I'm probably going to waste my money. Can you provide address for the place in Gloucester you mention - perhaps I'll try them 1st! I have little information about his time in the war other than that he served in Port Said, Rhodesia and Malta and that he flew Defiants and I believe sea-planes, but not Sunderlands. His name was Tom Scott and yes he was scottish! I believe he also cheekily used to call himself Thomas Campbell-McPherson Scott, which were not his given names!
Shirley.
  • 0

#20 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 26 April 2011 - 10:43 PM

Hi Shirley,

Hope you find the following to be of use
Claiming for campaign medals
and also
Ministry of Defence | Defence For... | Veterans | Medals | Medal FAQs

Best of luck!
Keith
  • 0

#21 dgladstone

dgladstone

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 01 May 2011 - 10:10 PM

got sidetracked while doing some research for a history paper and joined the website today

Anyways, I have some questions. Both my grandfather and his brother were British citizens and fought in ww2. My great uncle was killed, and after a little bit of research, I found him on the CWGC. I would like to find out his full records though.

The same goes for my grandfather. After the war, he moved to America. How easy would it be for me to get both his records, and my great uncles records through the MoD, since I live in America, and am an American citizen? Would it be possible to do it through an embassy (I live in NYC)?
  • 0

#22 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 01 June 2011 - 09:49 PM

How easy would it be for me to get both his records, and my great uncles records through the MoD, since I live in America, and am an American citizen?


Hi,

I don't think that your nationality is an issue; posts 4 and 5 in this thread should be of use when applying.

The MOD has very archaic working practices. I think the first hurdle is to get their service numbers. Your second hurdle will be to get a cheque for £30 sent to them. If they find the records, they will send them to you.

If you have family in the UK, why not ask them to make the application?
  • 0

#23 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 01 June 2011 - 10:06 PM

Posted: 26-03-2011, 10:02 PM
I've had a negative and a positive experience with the RAF, and I want to share this with fellow genealogists.


An update:
I contacted RAF Cranwell, and to their credit they arranged for the record to be retrieved, and sent out. Nothing was received.
I got in contact, and I was advised that a second record had been sent. At the time, their computer system wasn't working for a few weeks, and by the sound of things, they were logging everything on individual post-it notes, with a view to keying it in their system at some point in the future. (This same system advised me that the service record I requested had not survived.)
I have been told that for a third time, the record will be ordered, only this time it will be put in an envelope by someone at Cranwell, and sent by recorded post. Hopefully I will get it in 2 weeks time.

In the same way that it is possible to pay £30 for a service record request, and be given the brush-off, there is a similar situation whereby you can pay the NHS £42 for details from the 1939 Registration
1939 Register Service | Services | The NHS Information Centre
Having trawled some forum posts, it would appear that some people who have used this service have had negative experiences, in a vein similar to my dealings with Cranwell. Given that the electoral rolls are going to be digitised next year (not sure what date range), I am thinking it will be better to wait for this, rather than to give my money to the NHS for a lacklustre service.
Findmypast.co.uk and British Library project to digitise 5 million pages of records
  • 0

#24 Tab

Tab

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 228 posts

Posted 01 June 2011 - 11:04 PM

My father joined the RAF in 1923 and left in the 1930's then was recalled again in 1938 and was demobed in 1947. Well they dug his record up okay mind you it took a few months.
  • 0

#25 Keith_H

Keith_H

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 15 June 2011 - 09:13 PM

The following is useful for interpreting abbreviations, and associated locations:
Ground Units
  • 0

#26 Nicola_G

Nicola_G

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 705 posts

Posted 16 June 2011 - 08:35 AM

I got my uncle's service records but it took about 3 months and required many phonecalls to badger & otherwise chivy them along. The chap I dealt with was called Adrian Lambert & he was very helpful. I have his direct number should anyone require it.
  • 0
:poppy: In memory of my uncle F/S James Linehan and all the crew of Wellington X3757. RIP :poppy:

#27 tulip

tulip

    Junior Member

  • Registered Users
  • PipPip
  • 27 posts

Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:26 PM

I had been thinking about applying for my Grandfather's records as I had no idea what he did,however the £30 was putting me off.Really off putting now reading other posts and finding that the RAF can't really be bothered.I don't even think he got any medals,so no point looking there.It's a shame really,Im quite interested in finding out more about what he did in India Command.

Angela
  • 0

#28 Nicola_G

Nicola_G

    Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 705 posts

Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:39 PM

I had been thinking about applying for my Grandfather's records as I had no idea what he did,however the £30 was putting me off.Really off putting now reading other posts and finding that the RAF can't really be bothered.I don't even think he got any medals,so no point looking there.It's a shame really,Im quite interested in finding out more about what he did in India Command.

Angela


Don't let the wait put you off Angela, even on the Records with the smallest details, you will find info that you probably won't find anywhere else, such as where he Enlisted, where he did his initial training, any punishments he may have incurred, any awards he gained and so on. Its definitely worth it.

You can also check if he got any medals, by contacting the MOD, they have a medal section.
  • 0
:poppy: In memory of my uncle F/S James Linehan and all the crew of Wellington X3757. RIP :poppy:

#29 Peter Clare

Peter Clare

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 10,482 posts

Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:39 PM

I had been thinking about applying for my Grandfather's records as I had no idea what he did,however the £30 was putting me off.Really off putting now reading other posts and finding that the RAF can't really be bothered.I don't even think he got any medals,so no point looking there.It's a shame really,Im quite interested in finding out more about what he did in India Command.

Angela


Angela,

I think you will find that in most cases the RAF are very helpful, why not give then a call and see what they have to say for yourself. If you are serious in your quest for information then the service record is the next logical step forward
If you don't ask, you don't get.

At the very least your grandfather will be entitled to campaign medals. 1939 - 1945 War Medal / 1939- 1945 Star. In some cases the Burma Star was awarded for service in India.

Regards
Peter
  • 0


 

In remembrance of my father Sgt S. Clare R.A.F Missing from operations 13th August 1942. Never Known, Forever Loved.


#30 Drew5233

Drew5233

    Very Senior Member

  • Registered Users
  • 25,387 posts
  • LocationLeeds, West Yorkshire

Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:46 PM

I had been thinking about applying for my Grandfather's records as I had no idea what he did,however the £30 was putting me off.Really off putting now reading other posts and finding that the RAF can't really be bothered.I don't even think he got any medals,so no point looking there.It's a shame really,Im quite interested in finding out more about what he did in India Command.

Angela


You get very little for free in this game. In fact I would say its only forums like this where you will find information for free and the odd museum that is willing to help.
  • 0




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users