The Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey) - 2/7th Bn.

Discussion in 'Searching for Someone & Military Genealogy' started by PhilN, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. PhilN

    PhilN Junior Member

    Hello Everyone

    Just joined this forum in the hope that someone here will be able to help me in my search to find out details of my great uncle W T (Bill) Grainger.

    All the members of my family who remember him and could give me any information are now dead, but I remember my maternal grandfather telling me about his younger brother Bill who was killed in WWII. I would like to find out a lot more about him, but have very little to go on. A search of CWGC comes up with only one name that fits the bill - and he is the correct age. He is listed as serving with the above regiment, with the service number: 14325116, and being killed on the 18/12/1943 - buried at IMTARFA MILITARY CEMETERY, Malta. These are the only details that I have - and I'm not even absolutely certain that this is my great uncle, although it does seem very likely that it is. Bill Grainger came from the West Midlands and had no connection with Surrey, which is a slight worry.

    Can anyone advise how I could track him down and find out more information?
     
  2. grunson

    grunson Member

    Hello,

    The corresponding entry in the WW2 Roll Of Honour is...

    Name: William Grainger
    Given Initials: W T
    Rank: Private
    Death Date: 18 Dec 1943
    Number: 14325116
    Birth Place: Staffordshire
    Residence: Staffordshire
    Branch at Enlistment: Infantry
    Theatre of War: Italy
    Regiment at Death: Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey)
    Branch at Death: Infantry

    Does the birth and residence of Staffordshire match up? If so...

    The 2/7 Queens were in 169 Infantry Brigade under 56th (London) Infantry Division. In late 1943 the division was active in Italy, landing at Salerno. In December 1943 the division were at the battle of Monte Camino. I believe there was a military hospital at Imtarfa which might explain his presence in Malta, though I defer to those who know what they are talking about. His service records may explain more.

    G.
     
  3. PhilN

    PhilN Junior Member

    Hello,

    The corresponding entry in the WW2 Roll Of Honour is...

    Name: William Grainger
    Given Initials: W T
    Rank: Private
    Death Date: 18 Dec 1943
    Number: 14325116
    Birth Place: Staffordshire
    Residence: Staffordshire
    Branch at Enlistment: Infantry
    Theatre of War: Italy
    Regiment at Death: Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey)
    Branch at Death: Infantry

    Does the birth and residence of Staffordshire match up? If so...

    The 2/7 Queens were in 169 Infantry Brigade under 56th (London) Infantry Division. In late 1943 the division was active in Italy, landing at Salerno. In December 1943 the division were at the battle of Monte Camino. I believe there was a military hospital at Imtarfa which might explain his presence in Malta, though I defer to those who know what they are talking about. His service records may explain more.

    G.


    Many thanks, Grunson. The birthplace and residence of Staffordshire is spot on - just what he was doing in a West Surrey regiment though is difficult to work out. How would I get his service records?
     
  4. grunson

    grunson Member

    Many thanks, Grunson. The birthplace and residence of Staffordshire is spot on - just what he was doing in a West Surrey regiment though is difficult to work out. How would I get his service records?

    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

    talks about the getting service records, though other members may be able to comment if the process is better described elsewhere.

    I'll have to defer to those who know what they are talking about with regard to postings to regiments as I really know very little on the subject. I can well imagine that one was posted where the demand was but I'd be interested to know how it worked.

    Graham
     
  5. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    PhilN -
    That report by Grunson is fairly accurate inasmuch as by December '43 anyone being badly wounded after Naples would have been treated firstly in Naples- and depending on the seriousness of the wounds been evacuated to either Malta - Tunis - Algiers or Blighty - he obviously died of his wounds.

    Regarding how he was in a Surrey regiment is neither here or there as his number tells me he was called up from Birmingham close to July/ August 1942- did his six weeks at a training regiment- (might have been Bury St.Edmonda as I was posted there from Birmingham)- qualified as an Infantryman - sent to a holding battalion which needed some more people -for extended training - possibly joined the 2/7th in Tunisia and took part in the Salerno landings of September 9th '43.

    Give the Glasgow record office a call for an application form- have his next of kin fill it in and send it off - there is a long wait...
    cheers
     
  6. Tab

    Tab Senior Member

    Men where sent to all sorts of Regiments in WW2 to save the problems caused in WW1 when thousands were killed in local Regiments which almost wiped out whole villages where they had joined up as Pals and all went in the same Regiment.
     
  7. PhilN

    PhilN Junior Member

    PhilN -
    That report by Grunson is fairly accurate inasmuch as by December '43 anyone being badly wounded after Naples would have been treated firstly in Naples- and depending on the seriousness of the wounds been evacuated to either Malta - Tunis - Algiers or Blighty - he obviously died of his wounds.

    Regarding how he was in a Surrey regiment is neither here or there as his number tells me he was called up from Birmingham close to July/ August 1942- did his six weeks at a training regiment- (might have been Bury St.Edmonda as I was posted there from Birmingham)- qualified as an Infantryman - sent to a holding battalion which needed some more people -for extended training - possibly joined the 2/7th in Tunisia and took part in the Salerno landings of September 9th '43.

    Thanks for that, this is all a great step forward for me.



    Give the Glasgow record office a call for an application form- have his next of kin fill it in and send it off - there is a long wait...
    cheers

    I think that's where I might have problems. I am his great nephew and I'm pretty sure that he has two nieces (his youngest sister's daughters) still alive but I have no idea where they are or how to get in contact with them. They would, presumably, be his next of kin.
     
  8. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    You don't need NOK approval if he died more than 26 years ago.
     
  9. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    PhilN
    well there you go - the oracle has spoken - so on the phone to Glasgow for the application form

    Cheers
     
  10. PhilN

    PhilN Junior Member

    Excellent, I shall do that.

    Many thanks to you all for your fantastic help. In one day I've found out more from this forum than than I did in several months of searching on my own.
     
  11. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    PhilN -
    while you await the nest developement concerning the service records if you would google for - "The Bernhardt Line Offensive" - it will give you some idea of the conditions in which that Battle was fought and roughly where your uncle fell wounded.

    The British 46th and 56th Divisions were in Xth Corps attached to the US 5th Army
    Cheers
     
  12. PhilN

    PhilN Junior Member

    PhilN -
    while you await the nest developement concerning the service records if you would google for - "The Bernhardt Line Offensive" - it will give you some idea of the conditions in which that Battle was fought and roughly where your uncle fell wounded.

    The British 46th and 56th Divisions were in Xth Corps attached to the US 5th Army
    Cheers


    Thank you, Tom, will do that. Were you involved in that offensive?

    I had a stepfather who was part of the 8th Army - in the RA. He fought in North Africa and in the Sicily landings, etc, and was highly contemptuous of the US military involvement in the campaign. What is your view?
     
  13. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    PhilN -
    I was on the other side of Italy as Tank support with the 1st Canadian Division-

    I have already bruised too many Americans on the Forum with my views on the Leadership and Staff strategy of our Allies in that campaign - suffice to say that I would wholeheartedly agree with your step father as being a man of good judgement

    Cheers
     
  14. jroberts

    jroberts Junior Member

    My grandfather served in the 2 / 7 Queen's West Surrey's. Would be interested in finding out more about his service record.

    His details.

    Charles Roberts, from Beckenham in Kent. He finished the war as a sergeant.

    Regards,

    James
     
  15. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    jroberts -
    then like PhilN - get onto Glasgow records office for an application form- if you read the whole thread you might find the address on posting #4

    Cheers
     

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