Hello, And some Help Deciphering a RE service record.

Discussion in 'Service Records' started by Youngr1, Oct 20, 2017.

  1. Youngr1

    Youngr1 New Member

    My name is Robert and live in Bristol, Many thanks for the acceptance into this group!
    Many years ago i received my Grandfathers service records from WW2, i have spent so much time on Google and trying to deciphering various acronyms etc, and always hit a brick wall trying to discover where his units served specifically. He was a tank driver in the RE, mentioned once that he was in Holland but never really spoke much about his service, much the same as my other Grandfather. When i try and search for the units as per the service record i can never find any information on them. I discovered some very knowledgeable people on here who may be able to provide some more information as to the movements.
    I have attached the service record in hope someone may have some time to break it down for me as i have seen on this site previously. I appreciate this is a lot of work and would be very grateful for any help i could recieve.
    Many thanks in advance for anyone who could help.


    Attached Files:

  2. Alex1975uk

    Alex1975uk Well-Known Member

  3. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Naval service records are more my thing but no doubt an expert will be along shortly. All I can make out is he crashed a motor bike (always amuses me that punishments are awarded) and got married.
  4. Youngr1

    Youngr1 New Member

    Thanks very much, I have looked at the acronyms but not many match, such things as AETH, And trying to discover some of the units he served in never seem to appear when I google..as for naval service records, my other grandfather served on the Gloucester so will message you when I get that scanned in!
    Thanks very much for your replies I really appreciate it. And it certainly made me laugh to see had a crash, he never mentioned that!!
  5. sjw8

    sjw8 Well-Known Member

    Hi Rob
    A bit late to the party but on a wet windy day, I have looked at the posted records. I have not been able to identify exact locations of your grandfather's units. Due to the number of entries, I will split my reply over several posts. Regarding the units in which he served, following cessation of hostilities and the change of unit roles many units were redesignated, merged or disbanded and it can be difficult to track their peacetime movements; there will be members who have better knowledge of these than I. Anyway here goes -

    Sheet 1 -

    20/07/44 – enlisted into General Service Corps (G.S.C.) and posted to 96 Primary Training Centre (96 P.T.C.) for initial training - Rank: Private.

    30/08/44 – following initial training, transferred to Royal Engineers and posted to “K” Company, No 3 M.T.T. Depot (M.T.T. = Motor Transport Training) for Driver training – Rank: Driver.

    There follows a period of Driver Training -

    08/09/44 – passed standard Drivers’ Test.

    10/10/44 to 24/10/44 – attended No 15 Heavy Duties Drivers Course at S.M.E (School of Military Engineering), qualifying as a H.G. (Heavy Goods) Driver.

    07/11/44 – following Driver training, posted to 874 M.E. (Mechanical Equipment) Company, R.E.

    05/12/44 – temporarily posted to No 2 (P) DBRE (Depot Battalion R.E.) pending re-posting.

    03/01/45 - assigned to Draft RJAZM (an apparent random code for posting abroad, repeated on kit/equipment/paperwork to ensure that you were sent to the correct theatre of operations).

    11/01/45 – TOS (taken on Strength) from Draft RJAZM to 50 RHU (Reinforcement Holding Unit).

    18/01/45 – posted from RHU to 557 Ass Trg Reg (Assault Training Regiment), part of 1st Assault Brigade – see Chapter 2 of 1 Assault Bde.

    20/01/45 – reclassified as Class I, Scale D rate of pay.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2017
  6. sjw8

    sjw8 Well-Known Member

    Part 2

    Sheet 2 –

    08/07/45 – posted to 557 Armd Eng Trg & Expl Est (Armoured Engineer Training & Experimental Establishment) following change of Unit name - see Epilogue of 1 Assault Bde.

    (Unit appears to have later changed its name to 557 AETHS (Armoured Engineer Training & Holding Squadron) – see entry dated 27/01/46.)

    19/07/45 – appears whole unit is SOS (Struck Off Strength) of 21 Army Group on Unit’s return to UK.

    31/05/45 – (belated entry) PTT Op AVRE (Passed Trade Test – Operator, Armoured Vehicle Royal Engineers) Class II, awaiting reposting to Sapper (i.e. standard basic RE rank).

    27/09/45 – award of France & Germany Star.

    31/12/45 – change of NoK details.

    23/01/46 – Posted to 201 Armd Engr Sqn (Armoured Engineer Squadron) R.E.

    15/01/46 – (belated entry) moved from UK to NWE (Germany).

    27/01/46 – confirmation by 201 Armd Engr Sqn of posting from 557 AETHS (Armoured Engineer Training & Holding Squadron).

    26/02/46 – appointed U/A/L/Cpl – Unpaid Acting Lance Corporal.

    27/02/46 – granted – P/A/L/Cpl – Paid Acting Lance Corporal.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2017
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  7. sjw8

    sjw8 Well-Known Member

    Part 3

    Sheet 3 –

    15/01/46 – (belated entry) re-posted from Dvr (Driver) Class to Spr (Sapper) Class NR (see entry dated 31/05/45). Passed TT & mustered as Op A.V.R.E., Group C, Class 2.

    (Date unknown - posted to 26 AE Sqn (26 Armoured Engineer Squadron), part of 42 Armoured Engineer Regiment)

    (Jan 1947 - Unit changes name to 26 Ass Sqn – 26 Assault Squadron)

    01/02/47 –Promoted U/A/Cpl (Unpaid Acting Corporal) and granted P/A/Cpl (Paid Acting Corporal).

    02/05/47 – granted W/rank (Wartime rank) of Cpl.

    01/7/47 – details of offence on 27/06/47 and award of punishment By CO.

    Sheet 4 & Statements of Service

    27/11/47 – authority to be posted back to UK from (SOS) BAOR prior to discharge to Reserve.

    22/02/48 – posted to Z (T) Reserve.

    05/05/51 – posted to ACC (Army Catering Corps) - Rank: Corporal.
  8. Youngr1

    Youngr1 New Member

    Thanks very much, that is absolutely outstanding, I am glad the weather is rubbish over there as this obviously grabbed your attentions whilst I have just logged in whilst in holiday in Spain ( sorry). I think my next course of action is going to the RE museum for some more research. So thanks again for your hard work.
  9. Gareth Woodward

    Gareth Woodward New Member

    Hello Robert. My name is Gareth and i am currently researching several of my families 1 & 2 WW records. From that i have stumbled across this forum and in particular your post. Like yourself, it is difficult to decipher war records, however from the information given by sjw8, it seems both our Grandfathers tread a very similar path and at times on the same date at the same place! For example;
    Posted to 3MTT 27 Jul 44 - No12 Heavy Drivers Course SME Ripon 12 Sep 44 - Posted 874 Mech Coy RE 09 Oct 44 - Posted 2(P)DBRE 05 Dec 44 - Proceed on Draft RJAZM 03 Jan 45 - 50 RHU 11 Jan 45 - 557 ATReg 18 Jan 45 - Class 1 Scale D 20 Jan 45 - Then on the 15 Jul 45 my Grandfather is posted to 149 AE Sqn and then 203 AEPK Sqn until his release on the 01 Nov 47.
    With all this in mind, i would be really interested to know of any facts you may have discovered and any useful sources of information that i can at, to further my search. Did you visit the RE Museum and if so was it worth the visit?
    Hope you pick up this message and look forward to further discussions. Regards Gareth.
    dbf likes this.
  10. Youngr1

    Youngr1 New Member

    Hello Gareth,

    So sorry for taking so long to reply, i hadn't noticed i had got a message until i was trawling through my emails and I must have missed this one all that time ago.
    Unfortunately I have gone no further in my search, life gets very hectic and my planned trip to the RE Museum was thwarted by my wife and 2 daughters who have no interest at all! got as far as london and the weekend was taken up with general sight seeing.
    Hopefully this year now that's been done i can plan another trip and visit for the day on my own.
    Looking at the dates, there is every chance they have known each other then!..what an amazing coincidence, if only we had done the research 20 odd years ago then who knows what stories they could have told us.
    All I really know at the moment is what my Grandfather said about his time in 557 Armd Eng Trg & Experimental, which was that they were driving the experimental tanks,and testing the various equipment that was being developed at the time such as the bridging tanks for ditches and rivers, he said you drove straight into the river, the tank was submerged and divers were present just in case as the tanks leaked quite a bit!
    For his 70th birthday (a long time ago now) we took him to Salisbury plain for a tank driving experience and within 5 minutes the instructor got out and took us all for a brew saying that he wasn't needed and to just let him have a play! we have photos somewhere of him with the biggest grin on his face mashing around the course!

    I will keep a closer eye on my email from now on, and if i find anything else out i will of course let you know, and would be interested to hear of your research as well.


  11. Mike Tidd

    Mike Tidd Member

    I also have been trying to work through my father's time during ww2. He was posted 874 ME RE on the 10.4.1943 and to 68 ME RE on 1.9.43. I have photo of his unit taken sometime I think in Belgium probably after hostilities. Does anyone recognise any of the guys in the photo and does anyone have any information on either 874 or 68 ME RE?? I keep coming up against a brick wall.

    Attached Files:

  12. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    874 Coy. | The National Archives
    Reference: WO 166/12270
    874 Coy.
    Date: 1943 Mar.-Dec.
    Held by: The National Archives, Kew
    Legal status: Public Record(s)

    Others are here Search results: 874 royal engineers | The National Archives

    and for 68 Section RE try looking through - Search results: 68 royal engineers | The National Archives

    You need to be careful as some files names are similar but maybe not exactly what you are looking for. We have several members who offer a service (cheaper than TNA) for copying files - so find out which ones you might need, time spans etc and the contact either Drew5233 or PsyWar.Org

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