In need of help re: Royal Signals

Discussion in 'Royal Signals' started by tjt6768, Aug 21, 2010.

  1. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    Hi, I just wondered if anyone could help at all.. I am totally new to this place and joined earlier this evening, read a few threads and it seems there should be someone with the noggins to help..?
    I am trying to find out where my Grandad served around 1944-47.. I have a photo of his service book and there are times at home, Korea, Iceland etc but some are just letters. I figured out that NWE is North Western Europe but there are another two places that I would like to find out about, C.M.F & B.T.A... Myself & my Mum would be intersted to know where he was. He passed away in 2006 and never really liked to speak about his time in the Army. I know that at the above times he was in the Royal Signals. My Grandma is alive but has dementia so doesn't know that much. As I said, I am a real novice at researching this and haven't got a clue where to look etc.
    His info (in case it's any use to you): George Young, born in Leeds in 1920, army number 2329572...

    I finally figured out how to add photos so I have put a couple in my album, of the service record and out of interest I also have a letter from a Field Marshall Sir William Slim, C.I.G.S.. to those who served in Korea, this is something that Mum found yesterday at Grandma's and we were really proud when we read it.

    Anyway, any help at all would be greatly appreciated.


    P.S, quick thanks to Mr Poop for the advice on starting a new thread, hope I do it right, LOL.. I am no PC genius.:rolleyes:

    P.P.S, I hope that if any of you do reply that I can find this section again, haha.
  2. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery

    hello Tony welcome
    do the service records show any more info that you have in your album if so post those im sure someone might be able to add some info.
    Also do you have the full service record

    good luck with your research and keep us posted
  3. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    Hi CL1.
    I will have to go back to Grandma's and photograph the rest of the book, it is a small red book I think.. This is no easy task as my Grandma asks what I am doing every two minutes and I have to explain it over and over bless her.. LOL
    Will do it in next couple of days though.
    Thanks for the reply & the welcome.
    I really wish I had tried to talk to my Grandad more about his life but it was just something he didn't seem comfortable doing, very understandable I guess, I dread to think of what he and many many others went through.
    I do miss him though...

  4. Mike L

    Mike L Very Senior Member

    Hi Tony and welcome. Quite a few Sigs types on here who I am sure will be only too happy to help you. Best of luck,

  5. idler

    idler GeneralList

    The Korean War was 1950-53 so he had a career post-war, either as a Regular or, maybe, a Reservist (had finished Regular Service but got dragged back). National Servicemen also fought in Korea but that wouldn't be applicable to anyone who'd fought 1939-45.

    Anyway, CMF is Central Mediterranean Force - Italy, basically.
    BTA could be BLA - British Liberation Army, the one that fought in NWE.

    Not sure what units went from Iceland to Italy to NWE yet...
  6. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    Thanks Idler.
    I appreciate it.

    Will try grill the family a bit more, see what any of them know.
    Will post any info I can find.

  7. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    I am pretty sure that the red book does mention reserves so he must've been called back.
    I wonder, what would they have been doing in Iceland, I don't really know much history but it would be nice to have an idea of what went on over there.
    I remember rumours in the family about him and the squad in Korea being nick-named 'the butchers' due to some retaliation on the enemy after finding half the squad mutilated... I don't know how much of it is true but I shudder to think what they all must have gone through..

    My generation and more don't know they're born half the time..

  8. Buteman

    Buteman 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA


    This is just a hunch.

    The 49th Infantry Division were nicknamed the Polar Bears because they went to Iceland. They then went to N.W.E. and in Normandy were called the Polar Bear "Butchers" by the Germans. The 49th Division disbanded in 1946.

    Is there anything in your Grandad's service records (another sheet) which mentions 49 Divisional Signals?
  9. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    Hello and welcome from Leeds.

    As Rob mentions above, if you can identify a unit it will stop any speculation. Many R. Sigs units served in NWE during WW2.

    Have you considered applying for his service records? They will be free as his wife (your grandmother) is still alive. They are a must if you are considering any serious research.


    ps. UP THE CORPS !
  10. Buteman

    Buteman 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA


    I forgot to mention, that he could have been attached to any unit which was part of the 49th Division, so his service records need to be applied for to find out for certain.

    Regards - Rob.
  11. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    Cheers to you all on here.. I will try get to Grandma's tomorrow and see if there is anything more to dig up..
    Real funny you should mention polar bears Rob, I spoke to my Mum on the phone today telling her what I had posted so far, she happened to mention a photograph she remembers as a kid of Grandad & others with a dead polar bear and Grandad had a big bloody knife in his hand. My Mum said she could never figure this out. Grandad was a real quiet gent, but I guess I won't even try to understand certain things.
    I will certainly look into getting his records, I know I keep on asking advice but do you reckon this will be a problem as Grandma ain't totally compus mentus with the dementia bless her.
    Where do I apply?

    Thanks again, I really do appeciate all this.

  12. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron


    Welcome aboard !

    I figured out that NWE is North Western Europe but there are another two places that I would like to find out about, C.M.F & B.T.A...

    BTA ? That's British Troops in Austria................ trust me........... I was there :)

    Good luck !

  13. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    The number is in the link below. Give them a ring and they will send you the forms or you can download them.

    You will need your grandmothers permission and you will need to enclose some form of proof of death like a copy of his death cert, a photo of his grave or a copy of a undertakers bill for example. Don't send any original documents.

    Army Personnel Centre - British Army Website

  14. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    I've just had a look of the picture of your grandfather with your grandmother in your album. The collar dogs (Badges on his collars) do not look like Royal Signals. Do you have a scanner to copy the picture rather than a photograph to make them clearer?

    I suspect he may have been with another unit pre war. Although too big that look like flaming bombs which would suggest Engineers or Artillery. That said its a wildish guess as they aren't very clear.
  15. tjt6768

    tjt6768 Junior Member

    I will try and get to scan all photos I can and put them into my album. I have no idea what part of the army he was in before the Royal Signals, I just found the red book I mentioned before, will do some more investigating soon, thanks for the link.

    Did you manage to read the letter in my album? I know the pics aren't super quality, I took them on my mobile, it's hard to take things out of Grandma's as she wants to know why etc, then I have to remind her Grandad has passed away again and it's upsetting for both of us... Will do a sneaky 'op'.. LOL


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